Palm Beach may be best known for its sandy beaches and award winning golf courses, but its sub-tropical climate makes it a popular spot for gardeners, too. Look inland and you’ll discover this sun-baked county is home to myriad gardens which overflow with beautiful and rare plants, trees and flowers. When staying at The Chesterfield Palm Beach, take a stroll through some of our favourite gardens and discover what makes the area the horticultural heart of Florida.
As the largest and oldest garden of its kind in Palm Beach, Mounts Botanical Garden is an unmissable attraction for green fingered visitors. Don’t let the name deceive you, as there isn’t just one garden here, there are 18! There are gardens devoted to roses, Mediterranean foliage and edible plants; gardens dedicated to plants that bloom in the water, the desert and tropical forests; and gardens filled with butterflies, mazes and shady gazebos. Skilled gardeners are constantly experimenting with new plants, which guests can discover in the ‘trial garden’, and experts frequently host workshops for those who wish to get even closer to nature.
Palm Beach’s principle tree is, unsurprisingly, the palm tree. While hundreds of palms line the roads and coastline, Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens bring together over 250 rare varieties in one space. Interspersed between striking sculptures, the trees stand tall over a sea of rare cycads and unusual tropical vegetation – one of the largest collections in the city. Named after its founder, American artist Ann Norton, this garden is an unusual and intriguing green haven where art and nature come together in perfect harmony.
In the heart of Palm Beach is The Four Arts Botanical Garden, a green space showcasing the diversity of tropical plants that grow in Florida. Reconstructed after being destroyed by hurricanes, the garden is now enjoying some calm after the storm, and is full of peaceful enclaves where visitors can relax and soak up the serenity. There are seven gardens surrounding a library, where beds of roses, tropical fruit trees and jungle plants provide a beautiful backdrop.
Entering the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens is like travelling to another world. Giant palm trees are replaced by miniature bonsai trees and quaint Eastern gardens, and six distinctive Japanese gardens await discovery, featuring lakes with beautiful bridges, hidden waterfalls, cascading rock features, and myriad plantations featuring plants, flowers and vegetation typically found in the Far-East. It’s one of the most unique gardens in Palm Beach and, along with the museum it surrounds, is a fascinating glimpse into Japanese life.
Created by the Preservation Society of Palm Beach, Pan’s Garden showcases over 300 species of rare and endangered plants, shrubs, trees and flowers, all of which are native to Florida. While there’s plenty to discover, the society’s seasonal floral displays are a highlight for many visitors. Don’t forget to look out for the Peter Pan-inspired statues that are hidden around the garden.
If you’re interested in exploring these gardens in Palm Beach, book a few nights at The Chesterfield, where the suites are as peaceful as these green havens.
Images Courtesy of Morikami, Four Arts, Ann Norton & Mounts Botanical Garden.