Allen Centennial Gardens, located at 620 Babcock Drive, here in Madison, is a free, public garden that surrounds the former Agricultural Dean’s Residence. The Dean’s Residence is a Victorian Gothic beauty that was built in 1891 and home to the first four Agricultural Deans. It is presently being used as office space, having been placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. The Victorian home is stunning, while the gardens are absolutely spectacular.
Open 365 days a year, this free garden showcases many spectacular features. There is a woodland walk that is serene and calm, filled with paths, wildflowers, and stone features. Strategically placed benches invite visitors to slow down and take in the beauty.
The formal gardens are lovely with clipped hedges, perennials, symmetrical plantings, urns and tasteful garden art. If you visit soon, be sure to check out the pair of white tree peonies on either side of the arbor. All I can say is “Wow!”
The rock garden is one of the midwest’s finest, with alpine plants, outcroppings, tiny little plants that beg for closer inspection, with water features that are unsurpassed.
This morning the koi were swimming lazily in the pond, easily visible to visitors and the volunteers helping to transplant dozens of hostas. Iris in many different shades were blooming and in bud, adding to the delight.
The kitchen garden, also known as a potager, along with the herb garden, are personal favorites of mine. How wonderful that these useful plants are just as attractive as the peonies and iris.
As mentioned, the garden is free and open to the public from dawn to dusk each day. Donations are welcome, as this garden is completely 100% privately funded. That means no University or State of Wisconsin dollars are used for salaries or operating budgets.
For more information, please go to Allen Centennial Garden’s website http://www.allencentennialgardens.org or contact Ed Lyon who is the Garden Director. He can be reached at 608-576-2501. It may be easier to contact Ed by sending an email to email@example.com as he is often working in the gardens.
If you wish more information on scheduling a wedding ceremony, please contact Kristen Jacobson, who is the Garden Events Coordinator. She can be reached at 608-262-8406 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To make a contribution, please contact Jodi Wickham, University of Wisconsin Foundation. Her phone number is 608-263-2027, reach her by email at email@example.com. She will see that your donations will go toward keeping this Madison gem available for everyone to enjoy.