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Land

Public viewing: 22 hectares (55 acres)
Overall size: 54.6 hectares (135 acres)

Official Name

Full Name: The Butchart Gardens, Ltd.
Operating Name: The Butchart Gardens
Colloquial Name: The Gardens
Pronunciation: butch-art, butch as in Butch Cassidy

Usage

The Butchart Gardens and The Gardens are referred to in the singular. “The Butchart Gardens is” or “The Gardens is”. If referring to the various gardens within The Butchart Gardens one would state “the gardens”.

Numbers

Over a million visitors annually
Over 600 staff during peak season
290 staff during off season
50 full-time gardeners
20 seasonal gardeners
26 greenhouses

Location

We’re located on Vancouver Island, 23 km (14 miles) north of Victoria, and 20 km (12.5 miles) south of the Vancouver-Victoria ferry terminal at Swartz Bay. Our street address is 800 Benvenuto Avenue, Brentwood Bay.

Names

Original owners: Jennie and Robert Pim Butchart
Owner: Robin-Lee Clarke, great granddaughter of Mr. & Mrs. Butchart

Important Dates

1904
The Butchart Gardens begins, restoration of Limestone quarry.

1906
The Japanese Garden started by Jennie Butchart, who later engaged landscape architect Isaburo Kishida.

1908
Estate named ‘Benvenuto’, Italian for ‘welcome.’

1909
Quarry exhausted.

1912
Sunken Garden started.

1920
First Benvenuto Seed Catalogue issued – mail order only.

1921
Sunken Garden completed. Rose Garden established.

1922
Private Garden and Conservatory added to main house.

1923
Jennie Butchart introduced the Tibetan blue poppy (Meconopsis betonicifolia baileyi) from seed sent to her by the Edinburgh Botanical Gardens.

1926
Tennis court converted to Italian Garden completed.

1934
California redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) planted.

1936
500 cherry trees imported from Japan – 400 planted on Benvenuto avenue.

1937
Aeolian pipe organ installed in main house.

1939
Mr. & Mrs. Butchart gifted The Gardens to Robert Ian Ross (grandson) on the occasion of his 21st birthday.

1953
To commemorate the 50th anniversary in 1954, Night Illuminations were installed throughout.

1964
In honour 60th anniversary – Ross Fountain installed.

1974
‘Tacca’ and miniature bronze horse and donkey statues revealed.

1975
Sturgeon Fountain installed.

1977
Great Grandson, Christopher Ian Ross introduced Firework shows to The Gardens.

1991
The Butchart Gardens was honoured with a stamp, 1 of 5 ‘Public Gardens’ stamps issued by Canada Post.

1994
The Gardens received its Coat of Arms as researched by Barnabas Butchart Clarke, great, great grandson of Jennie & Robert Pim Butchart.

1999
The Spring Prelude is established in the Blue Poppy Restaurant.

2001
Historical Display starts.

2002
Mediterranean Garden created.

2004
To celebrate the 100th birthday, The Gardens was designated as a National Historic Site of Canada and two totem poles were carved onsite by two local First Nations carvers and erected September 8th.

2005
Christmas skating rink installed.

2008
Weddings began in the Spring Prelude, Boat Tours offered during summer months.

2009
The Rose Carousel was commissioned and became operational on December 1st.

Accolades

OpenTable
Dining Room Restaurant Awards
Top 100 Restaurants for Outdoor Dining Canada 2024
Diners’ Choice Award
100 Most Scenic Restaurants in Canada
Most Romantic Restaurants in Canada
Best Outdoor Dining in Canada
Top 100 Restaurants in Canada
Top 100 Best Outdoor Dining in Canada

The World Federation of Rose Societies
Award of Excellence – 2018

TripAdvisor
Top 10 Travelling Experiences in the World in 2018
Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame

USA Today
Reader’s Choice, ’10 Best’ Attractions in Canada

Northwest Meetings and Events
Best Meeting/Event Venue

World Tulip Summit Society
World Tulip Garden of the Year, 2017

Victoria’s Times Colonist
Reader’s Choice Award for Best Island Tourist Attraction

Peninsula Review
Reader’s Choice Award for Best Attraction

National Geographic
Top 10 Magnificent Gardens

Condé Nast
World’s Most Beautiful Botanical Gardens

Visitor Comments

“Incredible! Very romantic after dark.”
– Greg & DeAnn, Springville

“Amazing boat ride. Chris the driver was a delight.”
– Lily, Victoria

“Kids loved it! Beautiful! Fun on the carousel.”
– Burgess Family, Whitehorse

“We walked through twice! It was that good.”
– Emily, Olympia

“We come every year! It’s wonderful.”
– Connie, Prince Edward Island

“Very special place in a crazy world, so refreshing”
– White Family, Australia

“We met here 28 years ago and came back.”
San Tam and Eric, Richmond

“80th visit!”
– Sanjeev, Victoria

“Beautiful and peaceful, like the world should be.”
– Maria, San Antonio

“Awesome place! Great activities for kids!”
– Justin and Alexa, Vallejo

“We were first here in 1957. It took our breath away then and still does every time we visit.”
– Isabelle & Sharon, Sydney

“4th visit this year. Annual pass is worth every penny.”
– Dana, Victoria

“Thank you to all the staff who made us feel like family today.”
– Cindy and Abigail, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

“A+ Gelato, A+ Gardens.”
– Jane, New West

Image Bank

We have High-quality, professional photography. To access please contact us.

Filming at The Gardens

Our visitor experience is paramount to us. As such, filming at The Gardens must be approved, please contact us for more details.

 

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