by Suzy Casey

Ashland Nature Center

Jct. of Brackenville and Barley Mill Roads, Hockessin, DE.

Ashland Nature Center serves as Delaware Nature Society’s headquarters with 130 acres of woods, meadows, marsh, the Red Clay Creek, and many trails to explore. The site is open to the public year-round, features educational programs, a picnic area, Visitor Center, Hawk Watch, Butterfly House, Bird Banding station, Bird Blind, Hummingbird Haven garden, two Lenni Lenape longhouses, and an overnight lodge for school and public groups.

Delaware Center for Horticulture

1810 N. Dupont Street, Wilmington, DE 19806-3308

The Demonstration Garden aims to showcase urban horticulture and features plants that are well-suited to our area, provide year-round interest, and are locally available in garden centers and nurseries. The renovated garden will continue to include creative re-use of structural materials and artifacts of historic value to Wilmington, and most areas will continue to be handicap accessible.

The garden will be open to the public during daylight hours. For regular updates in your inbox, sign up for our monthly eNewsletter or visit TheDCH Facebook Page to learn more.

George Read House and Gardens

42 The Strand, New Castle, DE 19720

An 1801 14,000 square foot mansion built by one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, is graced by a 150 year old garden. The 1-1/2 acre garden has three sections: a formal parterre flower garden, a specimen garden of exotic and native favorites, and a large fruit orchard and kitchen garden with allees of pear trees and trellised grapes and formal boxwood hedges.


1405 Greenhill Avenue, Wilmington, DE 19806

This is one of those best kept secrets and a just must see. The grounds of this early 20th century estate include a formal Italian garden, a bald cypress allee, and an extensive collection of period garden ornaments.

Hagley Museum and Library

Route 141 and Brandywine River, Wilmington, DE 19807

E. I. du Pont Garden

230 acres of trees and flowering shrubs on the banks of the Brandywine River surround this museum on the site of the first Du Pont black powder works. Several restored buildings house exhibits and live demonstrations that give visitors a window into 19th life and work. Gardens include a formal French garden cultivated by E. I. du Pont.

Josephine Gardens

Brandywine Park, 18th and Market Streets Wilmington, DE 19899

This lovely 178 acre park blends monuments, formal gardens, and natural forested areas with trails. Two features of interest are the Josephine Fountain, surrounded by a rose garden, and a Sensory Trail for visually-impaired visitors. The park gardens are maintained with the assistance of the Friends of Wilmington Parks. The Brandywine Zoo is located on 10 acres within the

Mt. Cuba Center

3120 Barley Mill Road, Hockessin, DE 19707

Mt. Cuba Center inspires an appreciation for the beauty and value of native plants and a commitment to protect the habitats that sustain them.
Nine gardens to explore on the grounds featuring; azaleas on the South Terrace, tulips, delphiniums and chrysanthemums in the Round Garden, 25 cultivars of lilacs on the Lilac Path, native trees, shrubs and wildflowers in the Woods Path, Dogwood Path and West Slope Path, native grasses in the Meadow, and native shrubs, ferns and wildflowers in the Pond Garden.

Nemours Mansion and Gardens

600 Rockland Road, Wilmington, DE 19899

Owned and developed by our founder, Alfred I. duPont (1864-1935), Nemours Estate comprises an exquisite, 77-room mansion, the largest formal French gardens in North America, a Chauffeur’s Garage housing a collection of vintage automobiles used on the Estate, and nearly 200 acres of scenic woodlands, meadows and lawns.

Rockwood Park and Museum

610 Shipley Road, Wilmington, DE 19809

The Estate grounds, created in the mid-1800s, feature a Gardenesque style, a naturalistic approach to landscape architecture. In addition to the extensive landscaping mixing native and exotic plants, the visitor will find a lovely walled rose garden (replacing a former kitchen garden), a Conservatory and the former owner’s Pleasure Garden.

University of Delaware Botanic Gardens

South Campus at the Dept. of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Townsend Hall, 531 S. College Avenue, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716

Since its founding, UDBG has endeavoured to collect and organize plantings with the purpose of supporting the undergraduate and graduate curriculum in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. The diversity of plants and the naturalistic design offer beauty, respite, and horticultural interest during many times of the year. Visitors are invited to enjoy a number of featured destinations within UDBG’s 15 acres.

Winterthur Museum

DE 52, Winterthur, DE 19735

Winterthur’s 1,000 acres encompass rolling hills, streams, meadows, and forests. Founder Henry Francis du Pont (1880-1969) developed an appreciation of nature as a boy that served as the basis for his life’s work in the garden. He selected the choicest plants from around the world to enhance the natural setting, arranging them in lyrical color combinations and carefully orchestrating a succession of bloom from late January to November. Du Pont translated his love of the land into a unified work of art that embodies a romantic vision of nature’s beauty.