11 Best Botanical Gardens in the United States

It's deep fall now, but nothing stands in our way of reminiscing about spring or summer, and dream about visiting best and most beautiful botanical gardens again to escape the city life, the seemingly endless pavement, and scorching heat. Some of those gardens look fantastic in winter too when they become Pumpkin Villages or Santa's Winter Wonderlands just in time for the holidays.

United States

Almost every major city in U.S. has a botanical garden inviting residents to not only enjoy nature and plants, but also participate in various events, concerts, art exhibitions, sculpture gardens, fountain displays, and children's gardens. Let's take a look at the best botanical gardens in our country in preparation for spring, starting with Atlanta Botanical Garden, because Georgia is on our mind.

1. Atlanta Botanical Garden

Atlanta Botanical Garden

The botanical garden of Atlanta is located in midtown, right next to Piedmont Park, offering easy access for visitors and beautiful city views. Nature lovers can enjoy 30 acres of pristine outdoor gardens and a huge collection of orchids in the Fuqua Orchid Center.

Atlanta Botanical Garden Irises Flowers

March and April see one of the biggest events all year – Atlanta Blooms. Tens of thousands of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, and crocuses are in full bloom then and attract crowds of spectators. It takes a year to prepare for this magnificent display of color, but the efforts are really worth it. Every year the colors get added, so the event is only going to become more splendid in the future.

Atlanta Botanical Garden Glass Flower Fountain

Spring flower display is not the only attraction in the gardens. Visitors also enjoy Canopy Walk through tree tops, the Edible Garden and Outdoor Kitchen, where chefs have demonstrations and tastings, and award winning Children's Garden with play areas and special events for families. Come Christmas and the gardens are alive with millions of twinkling lights displays.

Children's Garden

Atlanta Botanical Garden aims to educate, inspire, and provide an escape from urban life for all residents and city guests.

2. Portland Japanese Garden

The botanical garden is located in Washington Park and features 5.5 acres of Japanese Garden. You can stroll through and enjoy five different garden styles while there – a pond, tea garden, sand and stone garden, flat garden, and natural garden. The atmosphere here is very calming and the garden is named the most authentic Japanese garden outside of Japan.

Portland Japanese Garden

3. Brooklyn Botanic Garden

This garden is over 100 years old and has been around since 1910. It is located close to Brooklyn's Prospect Park and features over 10,000 kinds of plants from around the world. You can visit this garden any time of the year and enjoy different seasons and plants. In winter visitors love indoor tropical garden, but the garden is best known for spring cherry blossom displays.

Brooklyn Botanic Garden

4. Desert Botanical Garden

Phoenix is a dry place, but that doesn't mean that some fantastic plants don't grow there. Deserts are definitely alive and uniquely beautiful, especially with so much flora concentrated in one place. The gardens occupy 140 acres of land with over 50,000 plants on them. There are many trails to take around the gardens and enjoy cacti, wildflowers, and even edible plants. The gardens also host various events, such as music night or a night of ballet.

Desert Botanical Garden

5. Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania

Pierre du Pont established the gardens following French tradition, so today we have a bit of Versailles in Pennsylvania. Kenneth Square now features huge fountains, Orangery, and completely symmetrical hedges to stun every visitor.

Waterlily Pond Longwood Gardens

Longwood gardens feature indoor gardens on 4.5 acres of floor space, where you will find a beautiful waterlily pond and 10,010-pipe Longwood Organ. Summer weekends see spectacular illuminated fountain displays and fireworks. Actually fountains really are a piece of art and recently underwent $90 million renovation, so they are a sight to behold for sure.

6. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond, Virginia

The garden covers over 50 acres and offers over a dozen themed gardens, so it's very hard to pick just a couple of things to feature. Most visitors leave fascinated by the classic dome-shaped Conservatory, children's gardens, and beautiful rose gardens.

Roses at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden Richmond

7. United States Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C.

This garden is one of the oldest in the country and was established by Congress on the National Mall in 1820. History alone makes this garden stand out amongst all others. Nature and plant life here is astounding too – over 65,000 plants thrive on the grounds and in the Conservatory, which features jungle and desert environments.

Botanic Garden in Washington

8. Denver Botanic Gardens

Wanna see Japan in Denver? This garden has it all and serves as one of the top attractions in the city any time of the year. It covers 24 acres and offers the best flower displays in spring and summer, when you can marvel at Japanese, waterlily, and ornamental gardens. Gardens of the West showcase local climate and native plants thriving in dry conditions. Kids have their own garden with interactive stream while parents enjoy a concert or two in the evenings.

Waterlily Pond Denver Botanic Gardens

9. Missouri Botanical Garden

79-acre Missouri Botanical Garden of St. Louis offers a lot to stay in awe the whole time. 14-acre Japanese garden and the biggest orchid collection in the world are just two highlights here. The most famous exhibit is Climatron – geodesic dome that is used as Conservatory. It was built in 1960, has no columns, and rises to 70 feet in the center. Inside you will find a tropical forest with 2,800 plants and a river aquarium with exotic fish.

Missouri Botanical Garden Orchid Collection

10. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

This 47-acre wide botanical garden right on the coast doesn't even feel like an artificial garden. It is located between Highway 1 and Pacific Ocean shore in Fort Bragg, so spectacular views and wild nature is guaranteed. In addition to plants the garden is home to 160 species of birds.

Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

11. Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

The garden is Texas style for sure – seventeen different gardens are located in this 66-acre space. The gardens celebrate holidays in a big way too – during fall festival various artists use 150,000 blooming plants and 90,000 pumpkins to arrange Pumpkin Village, the only such masterpiece in the entire country. And then, of course, there is Christmas!

Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

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