This article was published on August 4th, 2012
A botanical garden is a living museum. Botanical gardens are a collection of plants that have been carefully documented and scientifically organized and presented in a beautiful display for visitors to enjoy. Vancouver is blessed to have a 55-acre site dedicated to preserving the wonders of nature, just moments from downtown.
The site of the VanDusen Botanical Gardens has a rich history. Orginally owned by the Canadian Pacific Railway, the area was logged at the turn of the 20th century, harvested for its valuable timber. The Shaughnessy Golf Club took over the site from 1912 until 1966. For five years the Province of British Columbia, City of Vancouver and the VanDusen Botanical Gardens Association worked together to preserve the site and secure it to become the home of a special garden. In 1975, the first visitors were welcomed and it’s been open to the public ever since.
The gardens are open year-round, and change with the seasons. During the summer months visitors to the gardens will find summer perennials at their peak, tranquility in the woodlands, a bounty of vegetables and herbs and a wide variety of usual annuals throughout.
There are both guided and self-guided tours, or just wonder where your senses take you.