11 of the world's most stunning must-visit gardens, from vineyards in America to shrunken miniatures in Japan.
Chihuly Garden and Glass – Seattle, Washington
One of Washington States’ most famous artists, Dale Chihuly brings to life and colour to the delicate work of glass blowing at Chihuly Garden and Glass in Seattle. Explosive and colourful sculptures are set within pristine gardens filled with trees, shrubs, flowers and ferns from all over the world, providing a stunning backdrop for his intricate pieces. Chihuly’s work has made it (very carefully!) all the way to England and is currently on display throughout the marvellous gardens at Kew.
Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
In Pittsburg the captivating work of Vincent van Gogh is brought to life through a new medium: flowers. Through blooms, trees and handmade sculptures , the historic glass house has Phipps Conservatory has been transformed into an artists studio, with works including the famous ‘Starry Night’ and ‘Sunflowers’.
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International Rose Test Garden – Portland, Oregon
The oldest garden of its kind in the US, the International Rose Test Garden is located just minutes from downtown in Washington Park and houses more than 10,000 rose bushes of approximately 650 varieties. The garden was established in 1917 as a testing ground for new rose families and became a sanctuary for European varieties during World War I. The roses bloom from April to October each year and are at their most vibrant in June, making them well-worth a visit over the next few weeks.
Shukkeien Garden – Hiroshima, Japan
Valleys, mountains and forests are represented in miniature in the centre of Hiroshima at Shukkeien Garden. Translated in English as “shrunken-scenery garden”, Shukkeien has been carefully cultivated to mimic a variety of natural formations and scenic views. With a long history dating back to 1620, the garden displays many features of a traditional Japanese garden, including a main pond and a number of tea houses.
Benson Sculpture Garden – Loveland, Colorado
Adorably nicknamed Colorado’s sweetheart town, Loveland is a beautiful, artistic town located an hour north of Denver. Benson Sculpture Garden is one of its highlights and has provided a unique setting for showcasing sculptures since 1985. There are currently 148 sculptures on permanent display in the garden, all set within lush green grass and vibrant flowers.
Sunnylands Center & Gardens –Greater Palm Springs, California
Sunnylands Center & Gardens is just one of many gardens well-worth the vist in the sunshine state. It offers nine acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, with more than 70 species of native and arid-adapted plants from North and South America, Africa and the Mediterranean. Taking inspiration from impressionist art, the gardens are cleverly designed to mimic brushstrokes.
Ganna Walska Lotusland – Santa Barbara, California
Ganna Walska Lotusland is a vast botanic garden. With 37 acres overflowing with over 950 plant species, the property plays a crucial role in preserving and increasing knowledge of endangered wild plants. It is also home to butterfly, cactus and topiary gardens.
Michinoku Park – Miyagi, Japan
A colourful and vast public garden, Michinoku Park offers something for everyone with its kid’s playground, huge picnic areas and beautiful fountains. Over100,000 flowers are planted seasonally so that every month offers a completely different landscape. Visitors can enjoy a boat ride on the lake and visit the Home Village, with six traditional Japanese houses from the Tohoku region, each with models and exhibits showcasing the history of the area.
Ferrari-Carano Vineyards & Winery – Sonoma County, California
In the heart of California’s lesser-known wine region, Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery, located in the picturesque Dry Creek Valley. Acres of stunning terrain surround the estate, with meandering paths and foot bridges, a lazy, rippling stream, fish ponds and dazzling displays of colour year round. Over 10,000 tulips and daffodils take centre stage in the spring.
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens – Mendocino, California
Floral favourites rhododendrons, dahlias and fuchsias are just some of the many flowers that flourish at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. The gardens have also become a haven for bird watchers (with the list of birds now at more than 180), so binoculars are recommended for close-up views of the surrounding wildlife.
Korakuen Garden – Okayama
With groves of plum, cherry and maple trees, tea and rice fields, an archery range and a crane aviary, Korakuen is regarded as one of Japan’s ‘Three Great Gardens.’ Originally constructed by a local feudal lord in the 17th century to entertain the ruling family, the garden was finally opened to the public in 1884. Korakuen incorporates the typical features of a Japanese garden; large ponds, winding streams, walking paths and hills, as well as a unique feature sure to be beloved by British visitors: spacious lawns.
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