The 8 Most Beautifully Designed Botanical Gardens in America

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The U.S. is extremely vast, so we won't even try to list all of the best places to visit. However, if you want to see and experience different types of things, such as hiking in the Teton Mountains, swimming at a black-sand beach in Hawaii, or sipping a sparkling wine at a Napa Valley vineyard, read on to learn more about some of the best places to visit in the USA.
Slide 1 of 9: The 380-acre Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden marked its 20-year anniversary in 2019. The garden is situated on the banks of Lake Wylie, with a conservatory dedicated to the display of tropical plants and orchids. Fans of Japanese landscape design will appreciate Rockford’s Anderson Japanese Garden, a 12-acre sanctuary that originally started as the privately owned backyard garden of businessman John Anderson. The Japanese garden is comprised of koi-filled ponds, winding paths, and streams. For more information, visit the website.
Slide 2 of 9: Constructed in 1916 by German landscape architect George Kessler, Garfield Park Conservatory was originally designed with traditional curving roof lines. In 1955, however, the aging and deteriorated gardens were replaced with an Art Deco–inspired welded-aluminum-frame conservatory. At the time, it was the first aluminum building in the U.S., and today, the 10,000-square-foot botanical gardens house a wide variety of plants including palms, orchids, ferns, cacao, vanilla, bananas, and coffee. For more information, visit the website.
Slide 3 of 9: The Portland Japanese Garden is home to a three-structure Cultural Village, designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who is also spearheading the national stadium for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The garden features a new courtyard serving as a venue for performances and events, three LEED-certified buildings, a library, classrooms, and a tea café. For more information, visit the website.
Slide 4 of 9: Located on San Diego’s Park Boulevard and overlooking Balboa Park’s Florida Canyon is the eclectic 2.5-acre Balboa Huntington Desert Garden. Flora lovers will enjoy the garden’s 1,300 plants, including succulents and drought-resistant plants from around the world. One of the most stunning succulents is the towering candelabra cactus, whose peak blooming period is January through March. Art lovers should visit the nearby sculpture court with works by Miró and Rodin. For more information, visit the website.
Slide 5 of 9: The site of the continent’s first Japanese garden is located in Philadelphia and was created for the 1876 Centennial Exhibition. Shofuso Japanese House & Garden includes a traditional 17th-century-style house—a 1953 postwar gift from Japan to the U.S.—and a 1.2-acre Japanese pond and garden by landscape designer Tansai Sano. Depending on the time of the year, guests can feed koi, roam, and enjoy the tearoom (sans shoes). For more information, visit the website.
Slide 6 of 9: The most awe-inspiring structure at the San Antonio Botanical Garden is the Lucile Halsell Conservatory. Unveiled in 1988 and designed by Argentinian architect Emilio Ambasz, the futuristic glass conservatory was the first of his projects ever built. The garden is home to several historic structures built in Texas in the 1800s, like the Daniel J. Sullivan Carriage House and the Auld House, moved to the grounds of the Garden so that the public can explore what life was like on the Texas frontier. For more information visit their website.
Slide 7 of 9: Opened in 1976 in the heart of midtown, the Atlanta Botanical Gardens boasts 30 acres of outdoor gardens, a Children’s Garden, and the picturesque Skyline Garden.  Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s Narcissus Garden contains artwork of 1,400 stainless-steel spheres carefully arranged among the pines and conifers of the garden’s Storza Woods, and can be viewed from the Canopy Walk. For more information, visit the website.
Slide 8 of 9: The Huntington is a Southern California destination comprised of a library, a art collection, and botanical gardens. The most intriguing plants to see in the gardens are orchids, cycads, camellias, and bonsai. The Botanical Gardens also house the Conservatory for Botanical Science, a 16,000 square-foot greenhouse with a silver kaleidoscope rotunda that you look through for an artistic view of the tropical rain forest. For more information visit their website.

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden (Charlotte, North Carolina)

Garfield Park Conservatory (Indianapolis, Indiana)

Portland Japanese Garden (Oregon)

Balboa Huntington Desert Garden (San Diego, California)

Shofuso Japanese House & Garden (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

San Antonio Botanical Garden (Texas)

Atlanta Botanical Garden (Georgia)

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens (San Marino, California)

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