9 Beautiful Botanical Gardens in Connecticut!

With the swirling colors of seasonal flowers, bright green leaves, and stone paths to stroll along, botanical gardens are wonderful places to spend time outdoors. Plan your visit to one of Connecticut’s botanical gardens in the spring to see blooming bulbs and trees, the summer to see native flowers, and the fall to see stunning foliage and late boomers. Here are the 9 best in the state. 

Connecticut College Arboretum, New London, CT

The Arboretum at Connecticut College is composed of 770 acres of swaying trees and native plants labeled with their names. If you visit in the right season, you’ll be overwhelmed by the bright colors of azaleas and rhododendrons, which make great backgrounds for selfies. Visiting in the spring will allow you to experience blooming mayapples with their characteristic leaves and hidden flowers, so do keep your eyes open for this unique species.

Bartlett Arboretum and Gardens, Stamford, CT

This education-focused arboretum and botanical garden features numerous classes for adults, including landscaping and plant care, and activities for children such as plant adaptation activities. Flora highlights include a stunning collection of magnolia with approximately five species and cultivars. Walk along Magnolia Drive in the spring to see the stunning display of large, white magnolia flowers.

Marsh Botanical Garden, New Haven, CT

For botany aficionados, the Marsh Botanical Garden has a unique collection of species and they post online when the rarer species are in flower or close to blooming so you can plan your visit accordingly. To accompany their seasonal outdoor gardens, they also feature several greenhouses including one focused on carnivorous plants with species from North America, Borneo, and Sumatra, among others. Succulent lovers rejoice as they also have a Desert House with benches to allow for some relaxation among the plants.

Elizabeth Park, West Hartford, CT

The highlight of Elizabeth Park is its rose garden located in the center of the park. The rose garden is the oldest municipally operated rose garden and the third largest in the U.S. The rose garden in Elizabeth Park has 800 varieties of roses in all colors and over 15,000 individual rose bushes. To see and smell the roses in full bloom, visit the gardens in late June or early July. For those uninterested in roses, there is also an herb garden, perennial garden, and rock garden.

Wickham Park, Manchester, CT

Wickham Park features 250 acres of gardens, arboretums, woodlands, and more. They also feature an impressive eight manicured gardens including an English garden, Scottish garden, lotus garden, and rhododendron garden. Their newest garden is the rhododendron garden, which come springtime, will feature over 100 flowering rhododendrons and azaleas, making this a great garden to visit to stunning, showy flowers.

Harkness Memorial State Park, Waterford, CT

Harkness Memorial State Park is a fun park to visit for strolls along the water, to have a picnic, tour the mansion, or wander the carefully maintained gardens. Surrounding the mansion, which has over 40 rooms and can be toured seasonally, are greenhouses and cared for gardens. The gardens were designed in the 1910s to 1920s. The collection consists of gnarled, old boxwoods and seasonal flowering herbs and shrubs.

Hollister House Garden, Washington, CT

Opening seasonally, Hollister House Garden is a formal English garden located in the picturesque region of Litchfield Hills. Mark your calendars for the seasonal opening day celebration. You’ll be treated to daffodils and unique hellebores in a smattering of colors. The Hollister House Garden is composed of 25 manicured acres surrounding an 18th century house, making it a beautiful and historical place to visit.

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Conservatory and Garden, Storrs, CT

Behind the Torrey Life Sciences Building in the Tech Quad, you’ll find the impressive Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Conservatory and Gardens at the University of Connecticut. This is a living plant collection with over 5,400 plants housed in a massive greenhouse and outdoor garden. The flora feature ferns, orchids, passionflowers, and succulents to name a few and their up-to-date website lists a massive number of plants blooming each day. Plan a visit to the garden for Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. or Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Glebe House Museum and Gertrude Jekyll Garden, Woodbury, CT

The Gertrude Jekyll Gardens at the Glebe House is the only remaining garden in the U.S. that was planned by the renowned Gertrude Jekyll. This English-style garden features classic English-style garden hedges, a planted terrace, and paths lined with roses. The garden is open during daylight hours, but visiting times for the Glebe House Museum vary by season so it is best to check their website to plan accordingly.

View more Connecticut Botanical Gardens and Nature Centers.
Share your favorites!
Connecticut Search
Visit a Nature Center and Botanical Garden Near You
Find Nature Centers and Botanical Gardens Near You
191 Farmington Ave., Kensington, CT
The Hungerford Nature Center in Kensington is home to many domestic animals and native wild birds. There is a farm-yard, indoor exhibits, walking t... Read More
501 Wolcott Road, Bristol, CT
The Indian Rock Nature Preserve, located at 501 Wolcott Road in Bristol, Connecticut, is ELCCT’s environmental education facility. With 280-a... Read More
156 Prospect Street, Wethersfield, CT
About Us: The Eleanor Buck Wolf Nature Center is an ecology education and community center devoted to helping central Connecticut residents explor... Read More
175 Shrub Road, Bristol, CT
Open Thursday through Saturday 10-4 and Sunday 12-4. Admission is free and donations are encouraged. Located at 175 Shrub Road in Bristol, Connecti... Read More
730 County Road, Guilford, CT
Our purpose is to inspire Curiosity, Imagination and Excitement about the wonders of the Natural Environment. Our Programs are aimed at developing... Read More
341 Milford Street, Burlington, CT
Learn About Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat Firsthand: The biggest threat facing Connecticut's wildlife species is the loss of habitat. As more land... Read More
119 Flagg Road, West Hartford, CT
About Us: Westmoor Park is an environmental, agricultural and horticultural education center dedicated to generating awareness and appreciation fo... Read More
1080 Wintergreen Avenue, New Haven, CT
In 1946 Tony Cosenza was asked by the New Haven Board of Park Commissioners to run Scout camping on the current Nature Center site. He accepts, but... Read More
227 Mansfield Street, New Haven, CT
Mission: Our mission involves support for research, support for instruction and some outreach. About: Sitting on eight acres, with six greenhous... Read More
13 Chatfield Street, Seymour, CT
Henry Hamel lived on Wooster Street Seymour. He had two sisters , Helen and Muriel. Helen was a teacher in Seymour and Muriel worked at Seymour Tru... Read More
70 Gracey Road, Canton, CT
RoaringBrookNatureCenter was founded in 1948 by Canton resident Una Storrs Riddle and was originally known as the Canton Children's NatureMuseum. I... Read More
The Meadowlands, Guilford, CT
Guilford Salt Meadows Sanctuary is located in Guilford, CT along the East River, a tidal river that drains into Long Island Sound. The tidal wetlan... Read More
10 Deerfield Lane, Ansonia, CT
The Ansonia Nature and Recreation Center is a town owned and operated park located in Ansonia, Connecticut. Use of this facility is free and open t... Read More
344 Roast Meat Hill Road, Killingworth, CT
Located on 344 Roast Meat Hill Road in Killingworth, the Platt Nature Center was formerly an old barn belonging to Marion Platt, who donated the bu... Read More
257 Copse Rd Madison, Madison, CT
The Bauer Park was established in 1990 when Erwin Bauer gave his farm to the Town of Madison. He left the farm to the townspeople, as he and his br... Read More
145 Lang Rd, Windsor, CT
About Us: Northwest Park,a 473-acre park operated by the Town of Windsor, Connecticut, offering an interpretive nature center, 12 miles of trails,... Read More
269 Oak Grove Street, Manchester, CT
The Oak Grove Nature Center is a fifty-two acre nature preserve operated by the Town of Manchester and the Lutz Children’s Museum, located at... Read More
1288 Boston Post Road, Madison, CT
About US: The Meigs Point Nature Center is an environmental education facility run and operated by the Department of Environmental Protection. I... Read More
113 Simsbury Road, West Granby, CT
Members pick up their shares at the farm once per week on either Tuesday 2pm-6pm, Thursday 3pm-7pm, or Saturday 9am-12pm. West Hartford Pickup is T... Read More
Show More
Select a Connecticut town to find
the Best Things-To-Do and Places To Go around you