Hillside Garden

The hillside garden and its impressive cantilevered waterfall are the apex of the Botanical Garden experience, gilded by a diverse collection of unusual trees and shrubs and broad swathes of perennials and meadow bulbs.  A semi-circle pathway climbs the hillside, passing by tree-form and traditionally shrubby witchhazels (Hamamelis), yellowwood (Cladrastis), silverbells (Halesia tetraptera), smooth hydrangeas (Hydrangea arborescens) and decades-old colonies of heirloom lilacs to arrive at a scenic overlook.  Home to four of the five original trees still standing on the first seven acres of the property, the hillside garden is a curatorial centerpiece of the Garden’s permanent collections, blending woodland and prairie ecotypes into a naturally inspired garden splayed on stark topography.  The hillside garden features notable colonies of bulbs in spring—an assortment of white and cream daffodils, thousands of crocuses, squill (Scilla sibirica) and Spanish bluebells (Hyacinthoides hispanica ‘Excelsior’).