Are you planning to visit the Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms? That’s great news!
We’re sure you’re itching to experience the thriving oasis of reflecting ponds, cooling greenery, jaw-dropping statuary, and aromatic gardens this site offers. They’re all true, by the way. In fact, anything you’ve read or been told about the place might not do justice to the actual experience.
Still, we’ll do our best to convey in words what this special place has in store. But first, let’s start with the more important questions.
The Denver Botanic Gardens has some of the most splendid gardens in all of America. If you’re going on a road trip across Colorado or America, definitely consider making this one of your stops.
It opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 5 or 8 p.m. on the weekdays, depending on what season of the year it is. General admission is $9 for kids ages three to 15 years, $9.50 for senior citizens, and $12.50 for adults.
If your kids are younger than two, they can take the tour for free.
Chances are the Denver Botanic Gardens is just one of your stops for the day, so you’ll want to know how much time to allocate for a visit. Generally, it should take an hour and a half to walk through all the gardens.
However, if you want to take your time, make it so you can stay for at least three or four hours. You may want to take pictures, eat, relax, and do other activities while you’re there.
If you want to maximize your limited time, you may opt-out of other activities and stick to simply walking around and taking pictures. That should have you proceeding to the next location in about two-and-a-half hours while still having enjoyed the experience.
Chatfield Farms is known for its five distinct gardens, namely:
This sprawling garden is a collection of 18 mini gardens showcasing Colorado’s arid climate. These clusters of tiny gardens are home to various xeriscape and arid-tolerant plants. They provide a contrasting softness against the rough and scrabble of the rocky terrain.
These gardens display some of our everyday home garden plants like roses, daylilies, irises, and other flowering plants. You can also find a vast collection of herbs in these thriving plant beds.
The true standout bloom of the ornamental gardens is the Ellipse in Honor of Nancy Schotters, which is anchored by Chihuly’s Colorado.
Another must-see in this section is the Gloria Falkenberg Herb Garden, home to a large collection of medicinal and culinary herbs, some of which should thrive in a regular home garden. Make sure you don’t miss exploring the Orangery, a French-style greenhouse where various potted citrus and tropical plants abound.
As the name suggests, these gardens house a wide array of shade-loving flora. The Woodland Mosaic is a standout section that displays dim-light-loving evergreens, including the stunning Solarium, which glows with an aged patina.
You can walk through Shady Lane, where a cornucopia of blooms envelops you in a cool, shaded cocoon.
This dual-garden combo is the most photographed of the Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms. One reason for this is the awe-inspiring and visually calming Monet Pool that gives you that feeling of peace and transports you straight to the heart of Giverny.
Here you can also find The Four Towers Pool, where two beautiful water towers flow towards. The entire structure (the towers and the pool) contributes majorly to these gardens’ water recirculation and conservation efforts.
If you’re tired of looking at American-inspired gardens, DBG can offer you a break from that. A leg of the tour offers you a peek into Asian, South-African, and tropical gardens.
In particular, the Tea Garden House and Bill Hosokawa Bonsai Pavilion are these area’s standouts. They showcase the site’s most intricately designed Bonsai, which took many years to achieve.
These Bonsai trees are displayed indoors or outdoors, depending on the time. Either way, they should be some of the best horticultural artwork pieces you will have ever seen in your life.
The June’s Plant Asia Garden is home to a beautiful bamboo forest you can walk through and take pictures of. As the delicate bamboo stalks bend and sway in the breeze, you can feel a sense of calmness and serenity overcome you, wrapping your body in a soft, zen-like blanket.
Many want to bring their canine best friends on their nature and road trips. While some places will allow you to bring your dogs with you, most don’t in consideration of other tourists.
Where this is concerned, DBG sits somewhat in the middle. It generally won’t allow you to bring pets, but they make an exception for service dogs.
You won’t be allowed to leave your pets in your vehicles, either. Frankly, we’d be disappointed if you even considered it, as that is potentially deadly to the animal.
Three hours of exploring may leave you with a hungry stomach. Don’t worry since you’re free to bring your own food and non-alcoholic drinks to the site. There are plenty of beautiful areas to take pictures, so you should definitely take advantage.
As we just mentioned, yes, you can have picnics in the gardens. In fact, we suggest you do so to have the full DBG experience.
When doing so, we recommend you support the gardens’ efforts on sustainability by using the recycling bins and compost around the different sites.
Winter, spring, summer, fall—it doesn’t matter! The gardens at Chatfield Farms should provide you with an amazing experience each and every time. Then again, if you want to avoid large crowds, try going early or late on weekdays.
If it’s wedding season, plan your trip in advance, so you don’t pick a particularly busy day to visit.
Most importantly, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy, take pictures, and make memories!