Water Garden

The half-acre water garden engages visitors with the Botanical Garden experience, offering a panoramic view of the Des Moines skyline from the boardwalk and the precipitating sound of water falling from a rill along the terrace.  The water garden showcases three islands of seasonal and tropical plantings, in addition to over 100 water lilies, 400 Japanese water irises (Iris laevigata), 300 copper irises (I. fulva) and numerous other aquatic perennials that populate the ledges that form its perimeter.  As a permanent, year-round feature, the water garden contains over 700,000 gallons of water and visually connects with the surface of the Des Moines River in the distance, a reminder of the Garden’s unique location in downtown.