Bucks County’s Guide to Gardens and Arboretums
With a surplus of arboretums, public gardens and historic landscapes, no matter the season, our area boasts some of the best outdoor activities in the state (and dare we say it, the country!).
Did you know that so much of the nation’s horticultural history is rooted in the the Greater Philadelphia region that it has been dubbed America’s Garden Capital? And here in Bucks County, we take that title seriously! With a surplus of arboretums, public gardens and historic landscapes offering a wide variety of horticultural display, and events, no matter the season, our area boasts some of the best outdoor activities in the state (and, dare we say it, the country). So grab your free America’s Garden Capital Passport, pack a picnic, and go immerse yourself in the beauty that is nature!
And, as always- if you do visit any of these locations, share your pics with us on Instagram with #buckcountyparent!
1237 State Rd, Andalusia
Tour the centuries-old residence or stroll the Walled Garden and Greek Walk, all while taking in the picturesque views of the Delaware River. The 65-acre picturesque estate contains the Biddle family’s early 19th century Greek Revival home, surrounded by stunning, native woodlands and spectacular formal gardens. Bring a picnic to enjoy on the lawn or under the shade of a tree! Garden hours are Mondays, Tuesday and Fridays 10 am to 3 pm and Saturdays from 10 am to 5 pm.
1635 River Road, New Hope
No matter the time of year, it doesn’t take long for visitors to appreciate what a special place Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve is. Located in Bucks County’s historic Pidcock Creek Valley, the Preserve is recognized for its ecologically diverse landscapes and features more than 700 native plant species. Come explore more than four miles of trails that wind through forests and meadows, and along streams and ponds. Repeated visits to different portions of the Preserve will be rewarded with new discoveries of different plants in bloom and new encounters with the multitude of birds, insects, mammals and aquatic life that depend upon these plants.
501 Churchville Lane, Churchville
Take a hike along two miles of nature trails or simply stop by to picnic at this 65-acre nature preserve. Their visitor center houses interpretive exhibits, live animal displays, a gift shop and wildlife viewing areas. Experience butterflies in the seasonal Butterfly House (open seasonally, July through September, Tuesday to Sunday, 11:00 am to 3:00 pm) or participate in a Native American program in our Lenape Village. The trails are available daily from dusk until dawn.
27 Cafferty Road, Point Pleasant
Five acres of plantings on steep wooded slopes embrace diversity and experimentation. The garden collections are located around two 18th century mills and are organized by plant families of color. Guided tours encourage experimentation and sharing the joy of gardening. Be sure to sit under the weeping Katsura by the fountain. Check the garden’s website for current daily hours and admission fees prior to visiting.
700 East Butler Avenue, Doylestown
Welcome to the Henry Schmieder Arboretum of Delaware Valley University, a horticultural jewel in the heart of Bucks County, and member of the American Public Gardens Association and Greater Philadelphia Gardens. Just west of Doylestown, the Arboretum encompasses 40 acres of Delaware Valley’s main campus. The Arboretum provides a living collection of plants and serves as a “green resource” for the surrounding community.
60 Thompson Mill Road, Wrightstown
Hortulus, a destination farm, garden and nursery, is known throughout Bucks County and Eastern Pennsylvania as a picturesque public garden and purveyor of unique plant specimens. The nursery has recently been acquired by local landscape designer, Jon Kontz and his family, who are ensuring that the Hortulus mission thrives and grows for future generations. Visitors can expect the same unique plant assortment with many wonderful additions, an updated garden shop and retail greenhouses, gourmet cafe cuisine, children’s activities, and seasonal community events. The public gardens will reopen in May of 2024 after much-needed renovations, but there are plenty of outdoor areas to roam, explore, and enjoy until then.
3265 Comfort Road, New Hope
Paxson Hill Farm Nursery and Gardens has acres of gardens to explore, including a maze and an Asian-inspired garden with a bridge and waterfall. Encounter wandering peacocks amongst the annuals, tropicals, waterplants, goldfish, trees, shrubs and thousands of perennials for sale. Their gardens include: shade gardens, formal gardens, ponds, bell garden, a place known lovingly as “the land of misfit plants.” Many pleasant surprises await the lucky visitor around each bend. Come take a stroll in their walking gardens today for a fee of $10.00 per person. Children 5 and under are free.
275 Swamp Road, Newtown
Visiting this historic site is a step back in time to an era of elegance that included the Golden Age of American Gardens. The four-tier gardens, positioned on an acre of land, were greatly influenced by French and Italian gardens and demonstrated characteristics that were common in formal gardens in the Philadelphia area at that time. Architectural plans and photos from the 1930s show four terraces that included gravel walks, fountains, sculptures, staircases, parterres, planting spaces, swimming pool, and tennis courts. Take a self-guided tour or contact the campus for a guided tour. Wedding parties are asked to register with the Foundation Office and the Security Office.