Must-See Gardens

We all have a wish list of gardens to visit, right? Mine is getting longer every day! I try to make time for a garden visit whenever I travel, and at least once a year I travel expressly to visit gardens. I regularly share my garden tours—private and public—here at Digging. To find them simply go to Categories in my sidebar and select Garden Tours for any particular year.

Below is a list of public gardens or private gardens frequently open to the public that I have toured. Click the links for your armchair traveling pleasure, or use these posts to help make your own must-see list.

Bayou Bend, Houston
Old South at Bayou Bend, November 2006
Dallas Arboretum
Monarchs flutter into Dallas Arboretum on fall migration, October 2014
Pumpkin extravaganza at the Dallas Arboretum, October 2014
Cherry blossom bonanza at Dallas Blooms, February 2014
Gorgeous plant combos, May 2012
Chihuly glass exhibit, May 2012
Sculpture, crepe myrtle allee, & Fireworks, November 2011
Fairy tale Halloween at the pumpkin patch, October 2011
February 2008, Part 1 and Part 2
International Waterlily Collection, San Angelo
Water lily collection is hidden gem in West Texas town of San Angelo, September 2014
Japanese Tea Garden, San Antonio
March 2013
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, Austin
Spring stroll at the Wildflower Center, February 2017
Bugs and butterflies at the Wildflower Center, part 2, October 2016
Early autumn color at the Wildflower Center, part 1, October 2016
Need shade? Read my article about native vines in Wildflower, July 2016
Coneflower frenzy at Wildflower Center, June 2016
Wildflower season, owlets, and native plant sale at Wildflower Center, April 2016
Berry-eating birds flock to the Wildflower Center, February 2016
Bluebonnets already a-blue-m at the Wildflower Center, February 2016
Decked and swinging at the Wildflower Center, December 2015
Meadows abloom and a swingin’ arboretum at the Wildflower Center, April 2015
A blooming good time at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, April 2015
Birds and blooms at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, April 2015
Gorgeous weeds and walls at the Wildflower Center, March 2015
Wildflower Center aglow with the spirit of the season, December 2014
Coneflower and tower power at the Wildflower Center, June 2014
Nature Nights introduces kids to the Wildflower Center’s new Family Garden, June 2014
Wildflowers and more in bloom at the Wildflower Center, April 2014
Great horned owls on the nest at the Wildflower Center, April 2014
Interview with Luci Baines Johnson about Wildflower Center’s new Family Garden, March 2014
Winter berries, ghostly agaves, and early spring flowers at the Wildflower Center, March 2014
Blazing Indian blanket and more at the Wildflower Center, Part 3, April 2013
Bonny bluebonnets and more at the Wildflower Center, Part 2, April 2013
Blossoming spring morning at the Wildflower Center, Part 1, April 2013
Redbuds in bloom and Lawn Gone! at the Wildflower Center, March 2013
Winter into spring at the Wildflower Center, February 2013
Thankful for the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center & Native Plants, November 2011
Rockin’ Demonstration Gardens at the Wildflower Center, November 2011
Children’s Garden & Edible Garden at Wildflower Center, November 2011
Great horned owl chicks growing up fast, May 2011
Great Horned Owlets Nesting at Wildflower Center, April 2011
Going to Extremes at the Wildflower Center, April 2011
Camera Practice at the Wildflower Center, September 2010
This Place I Love So Much, May 2010
Fascinating Faces at the Wildflower Center, May 2010
Stock Tank Planters Gone Wild!, May 2010
Sculpture Show Enlivens Wildflower Center in Winter, February 2010
Winter Trees at the Wildflower Center, February 2010
Garden Structure at the Wildflower Center, February 2010
Agave Love at Austin’s Wildflower Center, February 2010
Wildflower Center Blooming After the Rain, September 2009
Wildflower Center & Jill Nokes book-signing, December 2007
Winter Wonderland at the Wildflower Center, December 2006
Goblins in the Garden at the Wildflower Center, October 2006
Peckerwood Garden, Hempstead
Garden Dialogues with John Fairey at Peckerwood, May 2017
Botanical bonanza at Peckerwood Garden, April 2015
Blogger field trip: Peckerwood Garden, November 2008
Quinta Mazatlan, McAllen
Visit to Quinta Mazatlan, birding, and Planta Nativa Festival, October 2016
Rollingwood City Hall Waterwise Garden, Austin
Blowsy autumn beauty at Rollingwood Waterwise Garden, November 2015
Going waterwise at Rollingwood City Hall, April 2015
San Antonio Botanical Garden
Spring color and edibles at San Antonio Botanical Garden, March 2013
Blogger Field Trip, November 2009
Visit to SABG, September 2007
Watersaver Lane, September 2007
Zilker Botanical Garden, Austin
Hartman Prehistoric Garden, November 2015, March 2011, and October 2007
Taniguchi Japanese Garden, November 2015, April 2011, and November 2007
Zilker Garden, November 2015, April 2011, and October 2007
Azaleas in bloom at Zilker Botanical Garden, March 2011

Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix
Visit to Desert Botanical Garden and Chihuly Exhibit: Entry Garden & Desert Wildflower Loop, April 2014
Cactus and Succulent Galleries, April 2014
Archer House garden and Desert Living Trail, April 2014
Edible Garden, palo verde splendor, and Chihuly balloons, April 2014
Desert twilight and Chihuly after dark, April 2014
Scottsdale Xeriscape Garden at Chaparral Park, Scottsdale
Xeriscape is not a zeroscape: Scottsdale Xeriscape Garden demonstrates the beauty of saving water, April 2014
Tucson Botanical Gardens
Part 1, October 2012
Part 2, October 2012

Filoli, Woodside (near San Francisco)
Old World beauty at Filoli: San Francisco Garden Bloggers Fling, July 2013
The Huntington Gardens, San Marino (near Los Angeles)
Evening photo shoot at The Huntington Gardens: GWA Pasadena, September 2015
Lotusland, Santa Barbara
Visit to Lotusland, part 1: Theatre Garden, lotus pond, & Japanese Garden, June 2013
Visit to Lotusland, part 2: House Garden with cactus and euphorbia, June 2013
Visit to Lotusland, part 3: Aloe pool, Blue Garden & Bromeliad Garden, June 2013
Visit to Lotusland, part 4: Rear terrace, parterre & lemon arbor, June 2013
Visit to Lotusland, part 5: Cactus Garden, June 2013
The Ruth Bancroft Garden, Walnut Creek (near San Francisco)
Sculptural dry gardens at the Ruth Bancroft Garden: San Francisco Garden Bloggers Fling, July 2013
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
Native California plants shine at Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, June 2013

Denver Botanic Gardens
Sun-Drenched Perennial Borders, July 2012
Grasses & Cholla, July 2012
Romantic Garden & More, July 2012
Plains Garden, Rock Alpine Garden & Dryland Mesa, July 2012
Water-Smart Garden, Wildflower Treasures & More, July 2012

Winterthur Garden, Winterthur
Dogwood enchantment and a wild windstorm at Winterthur Gardens, June 2016
Enchanted Woods children’s garden at Winterthur: Not your typical playground, June 2016

McKee Botanical Garden, Vero Beach
Palms and dinosaurs at McKee Botanical Garden
Naples Botanical Garden
Gardens with Latitude, March 2010

Chicago Botanic Garden
Chicago Botanic Garden Wows Spring Flingers, May 2009
English Walled Garden, October 2007
Japanese Garden & Bonsai Collection, October 2007
Circle Garden, October 2007
Evening Island, October 2007
Lurie Garden, Chicago
On Cloud Nine in Lurie Garden, May 2009
Big Town on the Prairie, October 2007

Bedrock Gardens, Lee
A fanciful journey through art-filled Bedrock Gardens, part 1, September 2014
Dark-fantasy woodland, Asian teahouse and more at Bedrock Gardens, part 2, September 2014

Santa Fe Botanical Garden
High desert in bloom at Santa Fe Botanical Garden, August 2016

The High Line, New York City
Up on the High Line, a skyline promenade, October 2014
The High Line park in NYC, a skyline promenade, part 2, October 2014
New York Botanical Garden, New York City
Autumn amble at New York Botanical Garden, October 2014
Wave Hill, New York City
Visit to Wave Hill, a Hudson River estate garden in New York City, October 2014
Visit to Wave Hill in New York City, Part 2, October 2014

Biltmore House Gardens, Asheville
Revisiting Biltmore Gardens at Asheville Garden Bloggers Fling, May 2012
Visit to Biltmore House: Esplanade, Terrace & Italian Garden, June 2011
Visit to Biltmore House: Shrub Garden & Frederick Law Olmsted’s trees, June 2011
Garden Designers Roundtable: Shades of Limelight on the Garden Stage, June 2011
Visit to Biltmore House: Walled Garden & Conservatory, June 2011
North Carolina Arboretum, Asheville
Wicked Plants & good fun at the North Carolina Arboretum, May 2012

Lan Su Chinese Garden, Portland
July 2014
Portland Japanese Garden
July 2014

Chanticleer Garden, Wayne
Drinking up beauty in Chanticleer’s Teacup Garden, June 2016
Hot flower border, meadowy lawn at Chanticleer’s House Garden, June 2016
Up on Chanticleer’s elevated walkway and Asian Woods Garden, June 2016
Flowers and rich foliage at Chanticleer’s Pond Garden, June 2016
Leaves of sunshine and moonlight in Chanticleer’s Tennis Court Garden, June 2016
Chanticleer’s Flower/Vegetable Garden and magical Bell’s Woodland, June 2016
Chanticleer rocks a Gravel Garden, June 2016
Chanticleer’s eerie, mysterious Ruin Garden, June 2016
Twilight in Minder Woods at Chanticleer Garden, June 2016
Teacup & Tennis Court Gardens, July 2008
Hydrangeas & House Garden, July 2008
Asian Woods & Stream Garden, July 2008
Pond Garden, July 2008
Ruin & Gravel Garden, July 2008
Cut Flower & Vegetable Garden, July 2008
Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square
Rambler roses and dancing water: Formal gardens at Longwood Gardens, June 2016
Those who play in glass houses: Conservatory and Indoor Children’s Garden, June 2016
Meadow views and fantasy treehouses at Longwood Gardens, June 2016

Bloedel Reserve, Bainbridge Island
July 2011
Seattle Japanese Garden
July 2011

Olbrich Botanical Gardens, Madison
Monday Morning Butterflies, September 2010
Curly Willow Hideaway, September 2010
Favorite Scenes, September 2010
Fall Grasses, September 2010
Tropicals & More, September 2010
Thai Sala, September 2010
Intimate Views, September 2010

Toronto Botanical Garden, Toronto, Ontario
Fling wrap-up at Toronto Botanical Garden: Toronto Garden Bloggers Fling, June 2015