The Botanical Garden is a municipal institution inaugurated in 1972. The protagonists of its birth were the Chief Engineer of the City of Bergamo, Luciano Malanchini, an eclectic figure and passionate scholar of the natural sciences, and Guido Isnenghi, agro-technician, knowledgeable of the local flora and with a strong aesthetic sensibility. Being involved in the first project and operational phases, together they contributed to the promotion of the International Botanical Gardens Alpini (A.I.G.B.A.) that was housed for years at the place of the Botanical Garden of Bergamo.
The original approach was followed by innovative ideas, as it aimed both to reconstruct natural native environments, and to stimulate the visitor’s aesthetic sensibility, thanks to the adequate compositional setting and the richness of exotic plants in some display areas. These intentions were underlined by the original name, Bergomense Botanical Garden, which was dedicated to Lorenzo Rota (1818-1855), the first researcher of the flora of the province of Bergamo.
A lot of special attention was dedicated in the beginning to the Alpine species (siliceous and calcareous soils), so that the Botanical Garden for several years was considered as an alpine botanical garden.
After a period of crisis in the management and also an absence of staff with botanical expertise, it was decided to close the Botanical Garden to the public between 1983 and 1987. In 1989 began the collaboration with the Civic Museum of Natural Sciences “E. Caffi” which, with its conservative botanist, has allowed the recovery of exhibitions and scientific consistency. For a decade, the Garden has been an integral part of the museum, and since 2004 has become an independent entity, separate from the municipal museum, with all the recognized effects by the Lombardy Region (D.G.R. November 5, 2004 n. 7/19262).
Since 1999 there is a director in the office.
In these years, the Botanical Garden has grown in terms of both consents and activity. Visitors are gradually increased from 2,439 in 1991 to over 20,000 in 2014, plus the participants in the events organized in the Sala Viscontea, multi-functional closed space, used as a laboratory and as a temporary exhibitions and thematic meetings, and from 2005 to 2014, it hosted about 143,000 people.