What could soothe a spirit more than a wandering lane, a partially hidden bench in the shadows, and plenty of plants? Finding all of this in the middle of a major city is like finding a unicorn. However, Denver Botanic Gardens is 24-acres of urban oasis that really does exist. Meander this sanctuary of different gardens, diverse flora, and pristine pools, and you will understand why visitors and locals alike seek the peaceful place to meditate, to learn, and to explore.
Gardens here are developed to showcase native plants and foreign counterparts that grow in the same types of environments. See wildflowers from the Great Plains. Explore the Cactus and Succulent House. Stroll down the garden promenade. Enjoy the shade of ponderosa pines and quaking Aspens in the Gates Montane Garden. Soak in the color and fragrance of drought-tolerant flowers from the Mediterranean, Colorado, Asia, and South Africa.
Travel the world with one trip to the Denver Botanical Gardens. International displays within the Denver Botanic Gardens include a fabricated Banyan tree, a Japanese Tea house, Steppe and rock gardens, and so much more. The Ella Mullen Weckbaugh Tea House Garden includes an authentic Japanese Tea House. Guests can register to experience a real Japanese tea ceremony. The Shofu-en Japanese Garden was created by Koichi Kawana so that visitors could enjoy a true Japanese ‘stroll garden’. A two-story Banyan tree will give amazing views into the tropical and sub-tropical conservatory that is home to a variety of exotic plants. Do you, like many visitors to the garden, enjoy miniatures? The Bill Hosokawa Bonsai Garden features Rocky Mountain tree species, miniaturized and displayed on pedestals.
Are you a fan of color and beauty? The Ornamental Gardens will become one of your favorite places within the Denver Botanic Gardens – especially in spring. Daylilies, lilacs, and irises bloom in profusion, perfuming the air and creating a kaleidoscope of purples, yellows and vivid oranges. Spend your time traipsing through over 200 cultivars of iris and daylilies. Linger in the El Pomar Waterway where a long reflecting pool ends in a serene waterfall. The Oriental fountain grass and blue oat grass add to the peaceful feeling of the brick walkway and stucco wall of this garden. The Ellipse in Honor of Nancy Schotters is a true rose garden. Here, along with rose specimens, are hydrangeas, peonies and delphiniums. In the Fragrance Garden aromatics like oregano, lavender, roses, and mock orange make the air heavy with different scents. There is also a pool filled with water lilies, lotuses, and other water-loving plants.
The Denver Botanic Gardens host a variety of public and private events throughout the year. Medicinal herb classes, private weddings, ‘Science chats’, and more allow guests to really utilize the gardens for more than just enjoyment and mediation. Birthday parties, meetings and even Celebration of Life events are booked for different parts of the gardens.
Produce grown and plucked fresh from Le Potager Garden are used in salads, on burgers, and on sandwiches made in the Hive Garden Bistro located within the gardens. Offshoots at the Gardens Cafe is located beside the Water Smart Garden. Here, visitors can enjoy breakfast pastries and croissants before strolling the pathways and tree-lined lanes. At lunch, come back by for delicious soups, sandwiches and salads, made with locally sourced products. There is an extensive vegetarian menu available.
After walking through the gardens and munching on fresh salads, stop by The Shop at the Gardens for locally made trinkets, herbed vinegars, and natural gifts. Books, jewelry and soaps make great gifts, or reminders of your day at the gardens.