Spring to Life at these NC Gardens
Experience the wonders of nature in blossoming localesBy Rue Reynold
From the formal gardens at historic estates to the natural foliage at state parks, North Carolina is full of nature everyone can enjoy. Here are just four of the many gardens you can find in our beautiful state.
Transport to another world the moment you enter the 8,000-acre grounds of Biltmore Estate in Asheville, home to rich greenery and vibrant flora nearly everywhere you turn. A must-see for any visitor, the estate features more than 250 acres of gardens, including Italian gardens, a walled garden, ponds and lakes home to wildlife, and even a soaring glass-ceiling conservatory housing gorgeous tropical displays and a wide array of exotic orchids. Spring brings blooming flowers and vibrant greens, so April is the perfect time to be engulfed in life and color from flowering trees and walls of beautiful hybrid azaleas and shrubs.
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
Discover Raleigh’s hidden gem of walking paths encased in rich foliage and a unique crevice garden that mimics the gaps in natural rock formations where plants can grow. This botanical garden is a haven for quiet picnickers and master garden nerds alike with beautiful and rare botany and a waterfall offering visitors a break in their stroll. Its variety of plants includes a hardy tropical garden, a grape vine garden with a four seasons display, and a unique aquatic garden. This area is also home to wildlife, such as turtles and frogs. Juniper Level Botanical Garden is only open weekends in February–May and July–September, so don’t miss out on this one-of-a-kind experience.
Stepping into this Manteo garden will make you feel as if you’ve traveled back to the 16th century. Stroll along winding paths through the manicured lawns, fragrant rose gardens and charming water features just as Queen Elizabeth I had during her reign. The Elizabethan Gardens will be bursting into color this April with a stunning array of azaleas, tulips, daffodils and an assortment of native and exotic plants. Visit the Butterfly House, partake in workshops or even dine for lunch while surrounded by the tranquil setting of nature. A journey to the Elizabethan Gardens is an unforgettable experience through history and nature you won’t want to miss.
New Hanover County Arboretum
With budding trees, flowers in bloom, and wildlife from birds to rabbits to deer peeking through shrubs, the New Hanover County Arboretum is a colorful and fragrant paradise full of life, especially in the springtime. Nestled in the heart of Wilmington, this arboretum was designed to showcase the area’s natural beauty. It’s home to 33 unique gardens filled with plants from all over the world, and features more than two miles of walking trails, events held throughout the year and plenty of open space for picnics and relaxation. By the end of a visit to any of these gardens, you’re sure to find an extra spring to your step.