The Ornamental Gardens at the Central Experimental Farm

Ottawa, Ontario

The Ornamental Gardens at the Central Experimental Farm (Ottawa) are aptly named. They check the ornamental box– but not the educational box! I’m impressed by the quality and quantity of beds showing plants in the old-school tradition by height– like your third grade class photo. But there wasn’t a single tag. I eventually figured out that the strange plant that looked like it was from outer space was Aster ‘Hulk’ but would it have hurt to have labeled it? Someone carefully designed these gardens, someone grew the plants, someone planted them in the beds (and the plants had to be labeled throughout this process), someone gives tours (according to the website) jut when I searched online for a map, there wasn’t one. And my email received this response, “There is no such a list perhaps even if the Ornamental Garden staff would be able to ID the plants (flowers) it would require a colossal amount of time that we don’t really have.

Well, I’m glad these beautiful gardens exist– and the nearby 64 acre Dominion Arboretum too since my awesome niece is going to Carleton University nearby and she’ll have a place to recharge her brain– but I left wishing I could identify some Rudbeckias!

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