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Romantic Gardens to Visit in June

by Barbara Rogers

Jun 15, 2022

© Sandra Burm | Dreamstime.com

North America

While family travels to gardens and arboretums are fun, some gardens are better suited to a romantic stroll for two. It’s not about their size or show, but rather something more intimate that makes these gardens magical. Arbors of fragrant vines to stroll beneath, tree-shaded lanes, cozy hedge-enclosed garden rooms, serene Japanese gardens, benches beside ponds and babbling streams and, of course, roses — these are the ingredients for a romantic garden interlude.


Gardens don’t get any more romantic than those at Magnolia Plantation in Charleston, South Carolina, where plants and trees grow in their natural forms, not sculpted or contained by meticulous grooming. Revel in the exuberance of plants growing as nature intended. Among garden designers, Magnolia Plantation is revered as America’s last, large-scale, Romantic-style garden. Prepare to be charmed.


Nearby, Middleton Place Plantation strikes a different note with America’s oldest landscaped gardens. Magnificent terraces of hedged galleries and pools descend in the symmetrical order of a 17th-century European garden.


Even if nobody ever promised you a rose garden, you’ll find one at Atlanta Botanical Garden, boasting the largest rose collection in the Southeast. Take photos framed by the Moon Gate in the Japanese Garden and admire the topiaries before strolling Keneda Canopy Walk for treetop views. Don’t miss the dazzling Chihuly glass fountain.


Gardens at Maymont, an opulent Gilded Age mansion in Richmond, range from the serene Japanese Garden with its waterfall and bridge to a magnificent terraced Italian garden with fountains, cascade and romantic pergola to stroll through. The garden also offers plenty of winding paths for woodland walks.


You’ll feel like a royal couple surveying their domain at Nemours Mansion in Wilmington, Delaware. The estate was inspired by the palace at Versailles. Although the Long Walk with its immense Reflecting Pool, cascading fountains and white Colonnade are designed after formal French gardens, the Nemours grounds invite strolling and exploring, not just standing in awe. An intimate sunken garden beside the mansion is filled with perennial flowers and tree-shaded paths lead to a wild brookside garden.


Sea air mingles with the scent of roses at Fuller Gardens in North Hampton, New Hampshire. Sculpted hedges frame more than 1,700 rose bushes in hundreds of varieties. Although at their height in June, the roses continue to bloom into the summer, as do the dahlia garden and lush perennial borders. The Japanese garden is also magical, concealed in a grove of cedars, giving it the feel of a secret garden where nymphs might spring from the pools.


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