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Plan a Visit to Longwood Gardens

By: Sherri RibbeySherri Ribbey
Discover amazing flower borders, an inspiring conservatory, attend a fountain show or take a quiet walk in the woods at Longwood Gardens.

Longwood gardens conservatory in spring: There’s always something new in the conservatory. Here their famous hanging orbs are filled with pink moth orchids (Phalaenopsis hybrids) and bigleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla).

Longwood Gardens

Kennett Square, PA

Well-known for its amazing horticultural displays created by knowledgeable staff, Longwood Gardens has something for everyone: flower-filled borders, woodland retreats, tree houses, a meadow and illuminated fountain shows that will knock your socks off.

Longwood was once the country home of businessman, philanthropist and passionate gardener Pierre DuPont. At his death in 1954, ownership transferred to a foundation that has transformed the estate into the 1,100-acre public garden it is today.

Longwood Garden flower garden walk: These huge red Abyssinian bananas steal the show along the Flower Garden Walk in summer.

Take a stroll along the Flower Garden Walk

The first garden (installed in 1907) was the 600-foot-long Flower Garden Walk. Wander along this popular spot’s wide brick walkway and you’re sure to find a few plant combos that you’ll want to replicate at home. You’ll find inspiration any time you visit — these borders are changed regularly for maximum color. In spring they're filled with 125,000 tulips (Tulipa hybrids), daffodils (Narcissus hybrids) and other bulbs and by summer the palette changes to a rich tapestry of warm-weather-loving annuals and tropicals. You'll see salvia (Salvia spp. and hybrids), canna (Canna hybrids), red Abyssinian ‘Maurelii’ bananas (Ensete ventricosum) and many others. By fall, fading plants are swapped for late-season bloomers. You can even take a stroll in winter to enjoy thousands of holiday lights.

Longwood Garden conservatory in fall caption: Enjoy every season in the conservatory where you can find unique plant combinations around every corner.

Enjoy every season in the conservatory

There’s lots to admire in the conservatory in every season — even winter! Visit the refurbished Orchid House to see the extensive collection and learn about Longwood Garden’s conservation work. In the East Conservatory, above, uniquely planted 18-, 24- or 30-inch orbs hang from the ceiling. And just about everywhere you’ll find plantings filled with tender perennials both familiar and exotic in unique combinations.

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Longwood Public Garden Pierces woods: Majestic oak (Quercus spp.), maple (Acer spp.) and tulip trees (Liriodendron tulipfera) have a rich understory of more than 200 plant species including native wildflowers.

Walk through Peirce’s Woods

If you’re visiting in early spring, don’t miss a walk through Peirce’s Woods. This woodland is carpeted with ground covers and native spring ephemerals, such as trillium (Trillium spp.) and rue anemone (Anemone thalictroides). You may even catch the sweet scent of Carolina allspice (Calycanthus floridus), redbud (Cercis canadensis) and some azalea (Rhododendron hybrids) varieties while you wander the paths.


Plan a visit

Longwood Gardens
1001 Longwood Road
Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
General admission $25 memberships and discounts available
Follow on Instagram: @longwoodgardens


Support Your Local Botanic Garden

In addition to free visits and special member events, many botanical gardens offer reciprocity: Free or discounted entry fees to hundreds of public gardens across North America. Visit The American Horticultural Society website for a list of participating gardens.

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Published: Feb. 16, 2024
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