The Chicago Botanic Garden, with event sites nestled amid enchanting gardens, peaceful lakes and native woodlands, is a spectacular site for a special event. Indoors and out, you'll find a host of settings to choose from—all featuring wonderful vistas winter, spring, summer and fall. The Garden blends uncommon natural beauty with the finest amenities and service. You can trust our attention to detail. The Garden's convenient location close to downtown Chicago is in the heart of the North Shore.
The Japanese garden exhibit is well made and manicured. The rose gardens have many different types of roses in bloom currently. The indoor greenhouses have many different exhibits currently and there are many different plants on display.
On sunny days, there are merchants selling ground spices, jams/jellies, peppers, and other products. They also give samples as you walk by.
The Visitor Center and The Esplanade
The Esplanade showcases dramatic elm allées and a pavilion lined with sheared cone topiaries and a row of waterspouts emerging from pools of water.
My favorite place! Elizabeth Hubert Malott Japanese Garden
This 17-acre lakeside garden includes three islands. Only two—Seifuto (Island of Clear, Pure Breezes) and Keiunto (Island of the Auspicious Cloud)—are open to the public. Across the lake, the inaccessible island Horaijima (Island of Everlasting Happiness) is symbolic of paradise—in sight yet elusive.
One of the Chicago Botanic Garden’s most enchanting and popular places is the Helen and Richard Thomas English Walled Garden, which was designed by renowned English landscape architect John Brookes, Member of the British Empire (MBE).
Krasberg Rose Garden
When the roses are in bloom—more than 5,000 of them—it’s hard to get beyond the shimmers of color and scent, the everything-is-coming-up-roses metaphor come to life. In the three-acre Krasberg Rose Garden, showstoppers include the striking Ingrid Bergman® (a true-red tea rose that grows up to 6 feet tall) and the spicy, fragrant John Davis shrub rose (a very hardy pink semi-double-flowered rose that can be trained as a shrub or a climber).
One of the best times to drop by is in the morning, when the roses are the most fragrant—the warming effects of the early sun help release fragrant oils from the dewy petals. Find a bench in the shady cedar arbor, which is surrounded by climbing roses, flowering clematis, and a bubbling fountain in the shape of a Tudor rose—you’ll have the best seat in the house.
The Chicago Botanic Garden’s collection of nearly 200 bonsai includes gifts from the Midwest Bonsai Society and from Japanese bonsai master Susumu Nakamura. Among the trees donated by Nakamura was a Japanese white pine that has been trained for at least 100 years.
Model Railroad Garden. It's a G-scale World
The 7,500-square-foot Model Railroad Garden features trains running on 1,600 feet of track. The garden-scale trains are 1/29th the size of life-size trains. Train and garden enthusiasts, young and old, return year after year for the delightful sights and sounds of the miniature trains traversing high and low through tunnels, across bridges, and around buildings. All are intricately handcrafted with natural materials, including twigs, bark, leaves, acorns, and pebbles. More than 5,000 tiny trees, shrubs, ground covers, and flowering plants of close to 300 varieties re-create the topographical landscape of America. Vignettes of tiny people and animals give the exhibit a storybook feel, while sound effects and a working geyser capture visitors’ imaginations.