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It’s hard to imagine a better view than the one through your Park Terrace Hotel window overlooking the prominent Bryant Park acreage. But as nature’s beauty emerges from the thaw of winter, New York’s loveliest gardens are now in bloom. Whether you are searching for a garden filled with tulips and roses, a secret garden tucked away from the world, or a Japanese garden filled with sculptures and Koi fish, you’re sure to find it in NYC. Grab your camera and discover the most colorful spots in all five boroughs. Check out the 9 best gardens in NYC.
When you’re in search of green space, Central Park is a natural fit. Make your way to the Conservatory Garden on the East side of the park where you’ll enter through the towering Vanderbilt Gate at 105th Street and 5th Avenue. Enjoy spring daffodils in bloom, the scent of magnolia blooms filling the air, and crabapple trees draped in pale pink blossoms. If you’re visiting in early May, check out the wisteria-covered pergola found behind the garden’s Center Fountain. The fragrant perfume of blooming wisteria surrounds you as thousands of purple buds burst forth.
As part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Met Cloisters celebrates European medieval art, culture, and architecture. Located on a hilltop in northern Manhattan’s Fort Tryon Park, the museum houses several distinct gardens. The Trie Cloister Garden sits beside the Trie Cafe and appears like a patch of wildflowers in the middle of a walled fortress. Springtime brings blossoms of bearded irises, lady tulips, pacific bleeding hearts and so much more. The Bonnefont Garden is a teaching garden featuring several themed beds replicating a typical medieval garden. The garden encompasses both medieval species and modern plants from across the globe that the horticulturists on staff have nurtured and grown from seed to plant.
Overlooking the Hudson River in the Bronx, Wave Hill is essentially a living museum of more than 4,000 varieties of foliage. Wander between flower gardens and sprawling woodlands. Marvel over the repurposed greenhouse spaces that now hold a fragrant herb garden and Mediterranean plants that thrive in the sunlight. This spring marks the return of in-person events at Wave Hill. Public Garden Highlights Walks will be hosted each Sunday in April, and Arbor Weekend returns the last weekend of the month, featuring kids’ activities, art-making, and more. View the full calendar for upcoming spring events at Wave Hill.
Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery is a natural arboretum that contains one of New York City’s greatest collections of trees and shrubs. Totaling nearly 500 acres, Green-Wood is about half the size of Central Park and contains foliage dating back to the 19th century with some of its oldest specimens predating the Cemetery’s establishment in 1838. Green-Wood’s collection continues to grow with new plantlife added annually including climate-adaptable trees, wildlife-attracting shrubs, and beauty-enhancing florals.
When locals think of the best botanical garden in NYC, most will likely name the New York Botanical Gardens (NYBG), a 250-acre oasis of gardens, arboretums, and green spaces. Visitors will discover 50 distinct gardens, expansive rolling hills, a greenhouse containing plants from around the world, an old-growth forest featuring ancient trails, and seasonal events boasting the best of nature’s beauty. Plan a visit to NYBG this spring to enjoy The Orchid Show, a jaw-dropping display of orchids in every shape and color imaginable. The 19th annual event features designs by Jeff Leatham, a floral designer to the stars.
Totaling nearly 40 acres, the Queens Botanical Garden boasts more than 20 individual gardens, an arboretum, a community vegetable garden, and an educational building. Guests are welcomed by two blue atlas cedars flanking the Main Street entrance that were transplanted from the original 5-acre garden. Throughout the months of spring, visitors can witness the blossoming of 35 different flowers including Siberian squill, crocus, grape hyacinth, glory of the snow, ornamental garlic, and anemone. Be on the lookout for ongoing art exhibitions on display throughout the gardens and regular events taking place like Spring Bird Walks and Garden Walking Tours.
The Battery is more than just a great place to view The Statue of Liberty. The Battery is also home to nearly 200,000 square feet of perennial gardens. Renowned Dutch plantsman Piet Oudolf created this NYC garden to offer blooms, colors, and fragrances in every season, but springtime releases some of the most beautiful scents and blooms. Look out for blossoms of bear’s breeches, purple flowering onion, eastern blue–star, wild petunia, Chinese peony, sharp–lobed liverleaf and so many more. View more information about the Gardens at The Battery online, including a full list of plant life.
Located just off E 6th Street between Avenues B & C, you’ll discover one of NYC’s secret gardens situated between two towering buildings. 6BC Botanical Garden is a community-run garden that was started by East Villagers in the 1980s in an effort to beautify a dilapidated plot of land. Today, 6BC is formally recognized as part of the New York City Parks system but continues to be cultivated and maintained by a community of local volunteers. The botanical garden boasts hundreds of plants, a small pond, vine-draped arbors, and quaint seating areas throughout. Live music is returning soon to 6BC, so check the events calendar for upcoming dates this spring.
The Brooklyn Botanical Garden (BBG) is a 52-acre urban oasis located next to the Brooklyn Museum. As the peak of cherry blossom season draws near, the BBG is anxiously awaiting the exuberant display of blooms that will fill their Japanese Garden. Until then, guests at BBG are enjoying the blossoms of Japanese pieris, dawn arrowwood, hellebore, and many more. The garden has announced they will not be hosting the annual Cherry Blossom Festival this year but encourages guests to visit the gardens and explore the Cherry Esplanade during bloom. Check the “cherry watch” regularly to know when peak bloom has arrived at BBG.
Book your stay at the Park Terrace Hotel in the heart of Manhattan, and take advantage of the available spring savings. Enjoy the warmer weather as you watch nature flourish around you at the best gardens in NYC.