The gardens are coming back to life after a long cold winter. Considered one of the most popular hobbies in the country, gardening is great exercise and relaxing. Whether you're a beginning gardener or seasoned horticulturist, visiting a public garden is a great way to get inspired, learn about plants and garden design and a nice excuse for a road trip.

Here is a list of my favorite gardens to visit in Maine.  Spring is one of the best times to visit as plants are emerging and flowering.

  1. Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens - Considered one of the top gardens in the country, lovers of gardens come from the world to view this garden in Boothbay, Maine. They offer programs, events, exhibits and so more.  Like a garden, it is ever changing and growing.
  2. McLaughlin Garden & Homestead - Situated in South Paris, Maine, this garden was developed by Bernard McLaughlin. For most of his life, he tended this garden by himself. He passed away at age 98 in 1995. The garden has continued to flourish and grow as a non-profit organization.
  3. Asticou Azalea Garden - This is one of my favorite places to visit on Mt. Desert Island especially in the spring when the azaleas are in bloom.  While in Northeast Harbor, you must stop by the Thuya Gardens as well.
  4. Wild Gardens of Acadia - You'll get a finer appreciation of bog and wetland gardens at these gardens with plenty of frogs to view. The original Abbe Museum is nearby as well as walking paths.
  5. Hamilton House Gardens - We visited the Hamilton House Gardens on one of the nicest summer days.  The home and gardens are on the river in South Berwick, Maine. It 's such a beautiful location. It's part of Historic New England who offer numerous gardening programs throughout the year.

This is just a small sampling of gardens to visit in Maine.  I would love to hear about your favorite gardens to visit and tour.

Sandra Harris