Gardens and Parks in Southern Maine



A York garden in full bloom.

Nothing inspires the aspiring gardener like viewing lush, blooming beds and plots and landscapes created and maintained by experts. For those who choose not to wield a hoe or spade, a stroll through a beautiful garden can still provide a rewarding experience. Listed below are gardens from South Berwick to Boothbay that welcome visitors. Some have an admission fee, but others can be enjoyed free of charge.


Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, Barters Island Road, Boothbay. The largest botanical garden in New England boasts 248 acres featuring display gardens, ornamental gardens, waterfalls, and incomparable stonework and sculpture, native plant collections, a library and visitor's center plus miles of trails to experience the tidal shore frontage and woodlands. Open year-round; admission charged. FMI: 633-4333 or


Elizabeth Perkins House, Southside and Seabury roads, York. Part of the Museums of Old York, the colonial revival house overlooking the York River features a reproduction of a 1940s garden designed by Elizabeth Perkins from her records. FMI: 207-363-4974 or
Gilsland Farm, Maine Audubon Society, Route 1, Falmouth. Farm is known for its more than seven acres of June-blooming peonies growing "wild" in the fields and woods of the sanctuary as well as in five neat beds near the environmental center. FMI: 781-2330 or



Hamilton House in South Berwick

has well-tended gardens

for visitors to enjoy.

Hamilton House, 40 Vaughan's Lane, South Berwick. A National Historic Landmark, the c. 1785 Hamilton House is sited on 33 acres of grounds above the Salmon Falls River and includes remnants of an early 20th-century formal garden, now renovated. Grounds are open dawn to dusk. FMI: 207-384-2454 or


Longfellow Arboretum, Payson Park, Ocean Avenue and Baxter Boulevard, Portland. Three acres of trees not native to Maine planted in 1976 by the Longfellow Garden Club and the City of Portland.


Longfellow Garden, Wadsworth-Longfellow House, 489 Congress Street, Portland. Colonial Revival Longfellow Garden is on the grounds of the childhood home of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, now the headquarters for the Center for Maine History. FMI: 207-774-1822.


Marrett House, 40 Ossipee Trail East (Route 25), Standish. An extensive Victorian perennial garden created by the Marrett sisters in the 1920s and 1930s has been restored at this historic 1789 home. Grounds open dawn to dusk. FMI: 207-642-3032 or



The gardens at White Columns,

Kennebunkport, are beautiful

in all seasons.

White Columns (formerly called Nott House) Garden, 8 Maine Street, Kennebunkport. Owned by the Kennebunkport Historical Society, the period garden at the 1853 Nott House was restored by the society after two years of historical research to create an appropriate scheme. The garden is open from sunup to sundown, and there is no admission charge. FMI: 967-2751 or


Ogunquit Museum of American Art, 543 Shore Road, Ogunquit. Museum grounds feature three acres of landscaped gardens, lawn and oceanfront ledge, including numerous large sculptures, a reflecting pool and secluded benches for quiet contemplation. Museum is open from July 1 to October 31. FMI: 207-646-4909 or


Rose Circle, Deering Oaks Park, High and State streets, Portland. A 51-acre city park features an award-winning rose garden with more than 600 species of roses. FMI: 207-874-8793 or


St. Anthony's Franciscan Monastery Grounds, Beach Avenue, Kennebunk Lower Village. Bordering the Kennebunk River, this former estate with an elegant Tudor House, purchased by Lithuanian Franciscans, features an English park ornamented with gardens and shrines and trails designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. It is known for its rhododendrons. Open between sunrise and sunset; free admission. FMI: 967-2011.


Sanford Parks, Main Street, Sanford. Two parks designed by noted Boston landscape architect Arthur Schurcliff in the 1930s: Gowen Memorial Park, site of an impressive stone gazebo, and Central Park, featuring a statue of local mill owner Thomas Goodall. Open sunrise to sunset.



A birdbath enhances any garden.

Sarah Orne Jewett House, 5 Portland Street, South Berwick. Features a garden in back and an herb garden at one side. Grounds open dawn to dusk. FMI: 207-384-2454 or


Spring Point Arboretum, Southern Maine Community College, Fort Road, South Portland. On the college campus, this one-acre arboretum overlooking Casco Bay was planted by the city of South Portland in 1981 and features 70 species of trees, shrubs, vines and groundcovers.


Stone House Gardens, 642 Wolf Neck Road, Freeport. Former estate is now a University of Southern Maine conference center and demonstration center for organic gardening. It features hundreds of heathers, as well as perennials, daylilies, azaleas, peonies and iris gardens with views of the Harraseeket River and Freeport Harbor. The Maine Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society maintains a rhododendron display garden with more than 40 species and hybrids. Open daily year-round, from dawn to dusk.