Every Tuesday, the Places to Go, Things to Do segment highlights an event or location for gardeners and nature-lovers to enjoy in the Southeastern U.S. Know of an event or location you’d like to see featured here? Make your suggestions in the comments section below.
Places to Go, Things to Do:
Harry P. Leu Gardens in Orlando, FL
Spring break is just around the corner, and Orlando is a popular destination for people of all ages. While the theme parks offer plenty of beautiful landscaping and flowers, garden lovers should be sure to make time to visit the Harry P. Leu Gardens, just off I-4 on the northeast side of town.
Leu Gardens was established in 1951 “to inspire people to appreciate and understand plants, the environment of Central Florida, and the Gardens’ historic significance”. At the center of the property is the Leu home, built as a farmhouse in 1888, now meticulously restored and available for daily tours (except July). Surrounding the home are 50 acres of southern gardens, including America’s third largest Camellia collection and the largest formal rose garden in Florida. Visitors strolling the landscaped paths will also find vegetable and herb gardens, palm and cycad gardens, and a butterfly garden. The gardens also host art exhibits and offer a gift shop with a large selection of Florida gardening books.
If You Go:
This is information is accurate as of Feb. 22, 2010. Check the garden’s website for the most up-to-date information.
- The gardens are open 9:00 – 5:00 daily except Christmas. Last admission to the garden is 4:00.
- Admission is $7 for adults; $2 children K-12; children below school-age are free. Free admission the first Monday of every month for all guests.
- Be aware that no pets are allowed in the gardens.
- Click here for driving directions. Parking is free.
While the theme parks of Orlando have a lot to offer, visitors to the center of the Sunshine State shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to see Florida shine in a more natural setting. Have you been to the Harry P. Leu Gardens? Tell us about your experience in the comments!