I haven't been blogging because I was in Montreal and Ottawa last week, the first time for me travelling that far East! Montreal is a beautiful city with a long and rich history which is also reflected in their gardening too. Montreal is gardening zone 5b, a couple higher than Calgary and one can tell with the broader selection of plant material. The city is amazing in so many ways from the 500 year old buildings to the way so many little nooks and crannies are planted with complex patterns of perennials or annuals reminiscent of the French knot gardens.
This urban garden is part of The Governors Mansion and is free to the public, the house is a museum and the garden is a learning place to illustrate how people in the 1700's grew things. So, imagine this place four times larger and growing all the food for the residents ranging from vegetables and herbs to grapes and espaliered fruit trees. The trimmed box wood and evergreens really set off that formal European look which I think influences gardens all over the city.
The rose garden was very impressive, I feel like I've seen many rose gardens from Portland Oregon to Vancouver BC to the Calgary Zoo and must say this one was very impressive. Once we started rounding the corner from the Japanese Garden we could smell the thousands of roses!
The Montreal Botanical Gardens are one of the major horticulture collections in North America and a must see if you're in the area. I wish I had a slightly cooler day, more time and a more patient companion, after 3 hours of walking in 30 degrees we had enough of the heat and had to move on. One thing I really liked was every plant has a little tag that says when it was collected or how old it is known to be no matter if it is a 40 year old elephant palm or an ash tree planted in 1992.