We're here to help

Whether you’re looking for high-quality photos of The Gardens or fact-checking for an article, helping you in a timely fashion is our priority. We are associate members of TMAC and SATW.

Fact Checker

Proper names, numbers and years can be easy to forget when you’re steeped in research and writing. Refer to our handy fact checker when you’re cloudy on the details and need a friendly reminder.

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. That is, “The Butchart Gardens is” or “The Gardens is”. “The Gardens” is used in the same way one would use “The Butchart Gardens”. 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
110 million litres of non-municipal water used from our reservoirs

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 in Brentwood Bay.

Names

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

Important Dates

1904
The Butchart Gardens began. Limestone quarry established.

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. First Rose Garden established.

1922
Private Garden and Conservatory built.

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

1926
First Italian Garden completed.

1929
Present Rose Garden established (1929-30).

1934
California redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) planted.

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

1937
Aeolian pipe organ installed.

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

1953
To commemorate the 50th anniversary in 1954, Night Illuminations throughout The Gardens was installed.

1964
60th anniversary of The Gardens – Ross Fountain installed.

1974
‘Tacca’ installed.

1975
Sturgeon Fountain installed.

1977
Christopher Ian Ross introduced Firework shows to The Gardens.

1986
Plant identification Centre started.

1991
Canada Posts issued 5 ‘Public Gardens’ stamps, The Butchart Gardens is one of them.

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 starts.

2004
Designated as a National Historic Site of Canada. Celebration of the 100th anniversary of The Gardens, including two totem poles carved onsite by recognized First Nations carvers, erected September 8th.

2005
Christmas skating rink installed.

2008
Weddings begin in the Spring Prelude, Boat Tours begin through summer months.

2009
The Rose Carousel is built and becomes operational on December 1st.

Accolades

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 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

OpenTable
Top 100 Restaurants in Canada
Top 100 Best Outdoor Dining in Canada

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

“Waited 40 years to see this – worth the wait!”
-Brent, Napa

“Extraordinary! We were here 21 years ago and always wanted to come back.”
Joyce, Atlanta

“Loved the garden, memories of a lifetime.”
– Vinita, Hayward

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

“The lights are so nice at night”
– Richard, Salem

“I like flowers and I love my wife. She is happy that I came here.”
– Pontius, Sacramento

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

“Returning after honeymooning here 21 years ago”
– Bill and Mary, San Clemente

Image Bank

We know you need access to high-quality, professional photography at a moment’s notice. With our Image Bank, you have thousands of photos and video in multiple resolutions at your fingertips.

Filming at The Gardens

Our visitor experience is paramount to us. As such, filming at The Gardens is dependent on the season and volume of visitors. If you’d like to film at The Gardens, please request a media visit, and tell us why and where you’d like to film—if your request is approved, we will escort your production team to ensure our visitors’ experience is uninterrupted.

Request a media visit

Are you a member of the media? Would a visit to The Gardens help your coverage? Fill out the form below to get started.

Sign up for media news