Montreal Botanical Garden Photos

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TripSavvy / Evelyn Reid

Montreal Botanical Gardens: A Rare Sight

The Montreal Botanical Garden is one of the largest nature museums of its kind in the world, with over 22,000 species planted in 30 gardens, ten greenhouses, an arboretum with 7,000 tree specimens to itself, several bird species, friendly koi fish, fearless ducks and more. For details on the garden's history and a rundown of special events and other attractions, click on any photo in this image gallery.

Montreal Botanical Gardens: A Little History

Founded in 1931 by teacher and botanist Brother Marie-Victorin, roughly two years into the worst worldwide economic downturn known to the 20th century, Montreal's then mayor Camilien Houde saw the creation of the gardens as an opportunity to employ Quebecers suffering during the Great Depression. But getting the gardens built was a painstaking process with more detractors and naysayers blocking its progress than supporters in favor of a nature museum. For a detailed time line of events, visit the Montreal Botanical Gardens website.

Stunning Variety

With over 22,000 species planted in 30 gardens, ten greenhouses and an arboretum with 7,000 tree specimens that take up over half the space, the grounds are a sight for sore eyes. From the comely appeal of the rose gardens to the contemplative minimalism of the Japanese garden to the Chinese garden's striking architecture, there's a garden for every taste with flowers and trees from across the globe.

Weekly Changes

The gardens evolve from week to week. In May, the arboretum blooms with magnolias, followed by cherry trees, apples trees and then 200 varieties of lilacs imbue the air with their scent. Flowers get a head start with spring tulips in April, then hyacinths, and the alpine garden peaks mid-May. Late June features the first roses, water lilies and orchids are on display year-round in the greenhouses. To find out what species you can expect to ogle on your next visit, consult the Montreal Botanical Garden's detailed calendar of blooms.

Birdwatching

Birdwatchers are encouraged to visit the grounds year-round, particularly in the winter and spring in the arboretum. At last count in 2009, 192 bird species were identified in the gardens and the numbers keep growing. And you don't need an eagle's eye or hours of tireless observation to catch a sight. Even your humble guide spotted a bird of prey lounging on a branch in early August.

Special Events

In the late winter and spring, it's all about Butterflies Go Free, an event where over a thousand butterflies are set free in a greenhouse. Summer attractions are many, from Asian folk dancing to Japanese tea ceremonies to First Nations performances. And in the fall, the big attraction is The Magic of Lanterns, in the Chinese garden. A calendar of events is available here.

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Olympic Stadium: View of the Stade Olympique on the Way to the Gardens

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Past the Gates

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Past the Gates

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: En Route to the Ticket Booth

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: On the Cusp of the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: On the Cusp of the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Inside the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Inside the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Fountain in the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Inside the Rose Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Entering the Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Lotus Pond in the Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Tower of Condensing Clouds

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Ducks in the Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Chinese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Aquatic Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Aquatic Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Aquatic Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Aquatic Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Aquatic Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Hop on the Mini-Train

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Entering the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Tatami Room in the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Japanese Garden Pond

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Japanese Garden Pond

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Japanese Tea Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Inside the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Japanese Rock Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: Resin Exhibit in the Japanese Pavilion

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Koi in the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Koi Closeup

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Shade Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Shade Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Shade Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Inside the Japanese Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - The Lily Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Lily Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - The Lily Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Lily Garden by the Pond

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Botanical Gardens Montreal: The Lily Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Arboretum

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Arboretum

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Arboretum

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Arboretum

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Sparrowhawk at the Montreal Botanical Gardens

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Sparrowhawk at the Montreal Botanical Gardens: Fuzzy Closeup

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - "The Pond"

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - "The Pond"

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - "The Pond"

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - "The Pond"

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - First Nations Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - First Nations Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Exhibit in the First Nations Garden

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Botanical Gardens Montreal - Sweat Lodge

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