We cordially invite you to join us here at Whistling Gardens, in Wilsonville, Ontario, nestled in Norfolk County just minutes south of Brantford and 20 minutes south of Hwy 403.
May 26, 2012 marked our official opening to the gardens. Since then, we have continued to expand all facets of the gardens.
We are now home to North America's largest public Peony Collection!
Our fall planting additions introduce a total assortment of over 1,200+ varieties!
The Conifer Collection now surpasses 2,000 different species, hybrids and cultivars. This collection is the largest in North America on public display. Many specimens in the collection are the only ones in the country, and also features one of the rarest plants in the world – Baishan Fir (Abies beshanzuensis). Only 3 wild specimens remain!!
Garden Centre Opens on April 25th 2020
Botanical Gardens Open on May 2nd 2020
Fountain Show Starts May 16th 2020
Did We Say? Birthdays, Anniversaries, Christmas
or Just Because You’re A Nature Lover Too…
2020 SEASON MEMBERSHIPS, GARDEN DAY PASSES
& GARDEN CENTRE GIFT CERTIFICATES! - NOW AVAILABLE!
Garden centre and botanical gardens gift certificates make a unique gift. Season Memberships offer a savings for visitors wishing to visit throughout the season while saving 10% on their garden centre purchases year-round.
2020 & 2021 GROUP GARDEN TOURS & CONFERENCE VISITS - NOW BOOKING!
2020 & 2021 EVENT GUEST, PANELIST & KEYNOTE SPEAKER - NOW BOOKING!
2020 & 2021 GARDEN "Bliss" WEDDINGS & CELEBRATIONS - NOW RESERVING!
Spring... May thru mid June... Celebrate the spring blooms with incredible displays of Peonies and Iris. Magnolia, Red Bud and many other flowering trees add to the magical renewal!
Summer - July, Mid August... 1,000's of summer blooms reveal their beauty with Red Hot Poker, Foxtail Lily, Blanket Flower, Echinacea, Aruncus, Lilies, Day Lilies and more...
Fall... Enjoy the changing of the season when annuals are at their peak, Fall perennials Echinacea, Black Eyed Susan, Aster Blanket Flower, Ornamental Grasses plus much more!
- Book A Group Education Tour (10 or more guests)
- Book Garden Experiences - Nature, Horticulture, Beekeeper, Wellness, Botanical Drawing
- CARE Day 50% Admission Donated
- Rejuvenate – Musical Fountain Show & Bird Aviary
- Photo Contests
- NEW Arrivals! Ornamental trees, shrubs, rare varieties in stock
- Peonies, perennials, grasses and more
- Free horticulture advice
- NEW Garden Gift Shop & Cafe!
Visit our National Award Winning, Internationally acclaimed and one of Canada's only privately run Botanical Gardens and see why Whistling Gardens was recently voted as one of Canada’s Best Botanical Gardens. Explore nearly 20 acres where you can view over 4,500 different plants.
~ Be sure to visit during Peony Season (approx. May15th to June 30th). Over 1,200 varieties of peonies are now on display. It is the largest public collection in North America. Our conifer collection continues to attract visitors from around the world to see 2,500 species, varieties and cultivars throughout the grounds.
~ The fountain display begins Saturday May 18th featuring well over 100 jets choreographed to new music, composed by the owner of Whistling Gardens.
~ The transformation of a former corn field to what they are today is an ongoing project with many new features, gardens and plant collections continually being added.
Our catalogue of woody plants is posted online and features many new, rare varieties of trees and conifers.
With so much to see and explore, we hope you can join us for an afternoon or even make a day of it.
Our Garden Centre continues to offer a large selection of conifers and unusual woody treasures. We are now offering more and more varieties of peonies as well. For several years already, Whistling Gardens has attracted collectors and gardeners across several provinces and the US. We are proud that we have been referred as the "go to" garden centre for new and unique plants.
2020 CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
Check Back Regularly - NEW UPDATES & ANNOUNCEMENTS EACH MONTH!
Click thumbnail to download our
Gardens Site Map
|Almost 20 acres have been cultivated and sculpted into 6 major gardens and collections. All the gardens have been seamlessly connected with wheelchair accessible walking paths. Whistling Gardens is home to the largest public collection of conifers in the world with over 2,300 species, hybrids and cultivars on site.
Click thumbnail to download our
Gardens Site Map
A Message from the Founders
As we welcome a new decade and look forward to a new season, I can't help but reflect on the past year. It was the year of "getting it done". First off, a special thank you to all the gardeners and organizations that supported us with letters and words of encouragement of, going back to the way we were in our successful zoning amendment. We will continue and even expand with the same programming and wedding events as we always have.
The gardens themselves have undergone significant changes in 2019. The final expansions of the gardens have been completed. New beds, new pathways and new plants were planted throughout the season. It took a couple seasons longer than I anticipated however, I can unofficially say we are out of land to expand in any significant way. The 20 acres are nearly filled to capacity.
The peonies continue to be the star plant attraction almost 100 varieties were added again this year totaling nearly 1,300. We now have guests to come Canada to specifically to see this collection among the rest of the collections and are amazed at the diversity and of the plants. We are honoured to be grouped in that league of significant plant collections. The growth of plants continues to amaze visitors and even myself. Shade was once a limited commodity at the gardens and now "plant shuffling" of sun loving plants is becoming an annual necessity. Visitors that came to us in 2012 or shortly after and now have returned just can't believe the changes and the maturity of the gardens. We now have Red Oak (Quercus rubra), Tulip Tree (Liriodendorn tulipifera) well over 40 feet in just ten years from 3 to 5 foot saplings.
Fountain Amphitheatre Update
The renovation of the fountains has been going smoothly. Phase 1 was completed at the end of 2019. The piping for new fountains will be finished this year and some of the new theatrical technologies will be experimented with this summer and next year as we get ready for our 10th Anniversary in 2022 and the grand opening of the evening fountain shows.
Note: The fountains will run their regular schedule for 2020.
Garden Centre Update
The garden has been rezoned and we are now able to have a Grab and Go food cooler and gift shop. The cooler will be stocked starting on the long weekend of May. It will offer self served light lunches, salads and snacks prepared by our caterer, St. James Eatery. Their catered lunches for groups receive rave reviews and we are happy that we are now finally able to offer food to smaller groups, visitors and guests. We are constantly evaluating new ideas.
This year we are offering over 50 herbaceous peony varieties as well as the long list or Itoh Peonies. Some of the perennial peony varieties have never been offered in Canada before. The list can be found on the catalogue section. Check it out! Many are very limited in quantities.
A special thank you is needed for our staff and volunteers for their dedication, support and endless energy. As we become more and more of an international destination, their vision and ideas are truly appreciated.
Finally, Whistling Gardens wouldn't be here at least in this form if it wasn't for members and visitors coming out to support and see the continual changes in the gardens. As many guests know, besides British Columbia you can probably count on one hand the number of private botanical gardens (not government funded) that are in Canada. The economic challenges are dizzying and constant. Your continued support makes this all possible. So, thank you for recognizing the value of our work and merits of the collections and gardens which continue to expand. Your genuine exchanges of encouragement are truly heartfelt as we share our private story of transforming our "corn field into a botanical garden".
Yours in Gardening
Darren & Wanda Heimbecker
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