This peaceful and serene garden is named in honor of Lile Bernard Rasmuson and designed by renowned landscape architect Carol R. Johnson in conjunction with local firm Earthscape. Plant selections were guided by local artist and garden designer Ayse Gilbert. Lile's Garden is a true 3+ season garden and houses an American Peony Society Gold Medal Peony collection along with a wide range of Primulas, Tulips, and other groundcover perennials.
LOWER PERENNIAL GARDEN
Designed by Wendy Anderson, this garden is intended to demonstrate perennials hardy to Southcentral Alaska such as delphiniums, poppies, peonies, hostas, iris, phlox, rockcress, fall aster, primula, Asiatic lilies, meadow rue, and roses. The displays of peonies and Himalayan blue poppies in this garden are dramatic late June through July.
Designed by Cathy Sage and Land Design North, and constructed in 1996, the Herb Garden is a haven of botanical delights. It showcases a variety of annual and perennial culinary and medicinal herbs. This garden is lovingly maintained by volunteers of the Herb Study Group in partnership with Master Gardeners and the Cooperative Extension Service.
The Rock Garden is a labor of love constructed and maintained by the Alaska Rock Garden Society. Optimal conditions here allow 350+ species of specialized alpine plants to thrive, including specimens from Alaska, Scandinavia, China, and the Himalayas. One section of this garden contains Tufa rock from a deposit in British Columbia. Another portion showcases planted hand-made tufa troughs. The troughs contain small alpine plants creating tiny gardens of their own.
ANCHORAGE HERITAGE GARDEN
The Anchorage Heritage Garden celebrates the 2015 Anchorage Centennial. This charming re-creation of an old-style Anchorage garden depicts the lush plantings of vegetables, annuals, and perennials common in Anchorage from 1915 – 1950. Harvested produce is donated to local food banks.
Long gardens on each side of the paved trail outside of the Outdoor Classroom area make great comparisons to each other for shade- and sun-loving plants. The shady side of the trail features Shieldleaf Rodgersia (Astilboides), Leopard’s Bane (Doronicum), Daylilies (Hemerocalis), and Primrose (Primula). The sunny trail side features ornamental grasses, Bee Balm (Monarda), Asiatic lilies (Lilium), hardy Azaleas (Rhododendron), and colorful Yarrows (Achillea).
This special location is exclusively for children to learn and experience the joy of growing their own food and plants. The entry to the Outdoor Classroom is comprised of large raised beds filled with edible plants. The back entry features a small fruit such as currants and raspberries.
Marked by its rustic, wattle-fence edging, this trail hosts many examples of common Alaskan wildflowers and native plants. It is planted and maintained by the Wildflower Garden Club. An SUV sized glacier erratic is a remnant boulder pushed down from the Chugach Mountains by a long retreated glacier. The big boulder wears a coat of mosses and lichens in a myriad of colors.
Our entry beds welcome visitors with successive splashes of color throughout the growing season. These plantings are anchored with hardy perennials that gracefully blend into the the backdrop of native boreal forest. Varieties of plants in the entry are generally moose resistant as this area is outside of the tall fence that protects our display gardens from these herbivores.
PLAZA & SHADE GARDEN
Multiple varieties of Primrose (Primula), a flowering crabapple tree (Malus), hardy perennials, and container annuals that thrive in shady locations are featured in the welcome area just inside the entry gate. A small sheltered kiosk contains information for gardeners, birders, visitors, and homeowners.
LOWENFELS-HOERSTING FAMILY NATURE TRAIL
This two-mile trail winds down to Campbell Creek where salmon spawn. Views of the Chugach Range are featured mid-trail. Be mindful of the two sets of stairs on the trail and watch for wildlife along the route.