Brandywine Valley & Delaware Gardens
Longwood Gardens (pictured above)
1001 Longwood Rd., on Rte. 1, Kennett Square, PA
With more than 11,000 varieties of plants, there’s plenty to see on self-guided tours. Be sure to stop by the Indoor Children’s Garden and outdoor Bee-aMazed Garden during your visit. Both are designed for kids, who love to splash in the fountains there. Just pack an extra shirt in case your child gets wet!
Beautiful aromatic plants are on display in the Conservatory starting April 10 during Making Scents: The Art & Passion of Fragrance. Families can also learn about perfume & the science of smell in this new exhibit, which continues through Nov. 21. See if you can identify the types of perfume scents & mix your own fragrance on a scented card. Kids can also become “Scent Seekers” & follow a guide to learn more about the perfume industry.
Visiting Tips: Download learning & activity sheets for kids from the website (click: Family Fun, then Magic Shrub Activities Kit). Guided behind-the-scenes tours & garden talks are offered daily.
Cost Cutter: Visit Longwood & nearby Winterthur this month for a single $20 admission fee to both sites during the Twice As Nice Promotion.
$6-$16 admission, ages 4 & younger free. Open daily. 610-388-1000, www.longwoodgardens.org
FREE Read House & Gardens
42 The Strand, New Castle, DE
At this restored estate in New Castle’s historic neighborhood, families can experience one of the oldest gardens in the region. It features three sections: a flower garden near the front, a park-like setting in the middle & a kitchen garden that would have been used for growing food in the 1800s.
In Bloom: An unusual and tropical big-leaf magnolia tree should be in bloom by May.
Free for self-guided garden visits, $2-$5 admission for house tour. Open Wed.-Sun. 302-322-8411, www.hsd.org/read.htm
FREE Rockwood Mansion & Park
Washington St. extension at Shipley Rd., Wilmington, DE
Once the estate of banker Joseph Shipley in the mid-1800s, Rockwood is now a public park that features a historic garden & mansion with a museum. Kids can run up & down hills and climb on boulders throughout the park. Rockwood is dog-friendly, so you can bring Fido too.
Visiting Tips: Guided garden tours offered every Thursday ($3).
Perfect for Preschoolers: Wee Wednesday Stroller Walks every other Wednesday, 9-10:30am (April 7 & 21 this month) include a guided walk through the gardens, an activity for tots & a snack.
In Bloom: Flowering shrubs blossom in spring, and roses that are more than 100 years old bloom annually in May.
Free to explore the park and garden, $3-$5 museum admission. 302-761-4340, www.rockwood.org
515 Painter Rd., Media, PA
Walk along the trails, see if you can spot turtles resting on logs in the pond & explore the Meadow Maze, an outdoor labyrinth. Tyler offers 100+ kids & family programs throughout the year, including walks, stories, crafts & gardening workshops by age.
Save the Date: Gnomes, fairies, trolls & other mystical garden creatures are celebrated in Nature’s Enchantment, Tyler’s summer exhibit, opening May 29.
In Bloom: Fragrant lilacs and thousands of azaleas & rhododendrons blossom in April & May.
Fun Fact: The Giant Sequoia tree is more than 90 ft. tall, making it the largest on the East Coast.
$4-$7 admission. Open daily. 610-566-9134, www.tylerarboretum.org
Winterthur Museum & Country Estate
Rte. 52, Winterthur, DE
This late 18th & 19th century estate features sprawling gardens & meadows, including Enchanted Woods, an outdoor space just for kids. Legend has it that fairies watch over this garden. You can read the entire tale to your kids on Winterthur’s website (click: Educational Programs, then Enchanted Woods, then Tale of Enchanted Woods).
Visiting Tips: Maps & exploration activities for kids available. You can also reserve Once Upon A Family tours of the museum & gardens, best for families with kids ages 4-11 ($17-$30).
In Bloom: Look for lovely Virginia bluebells, hundreds of daffodil varieties planted in cloud-like patterns & bright-red pink azaleas.
Save the Date: Learn how to create a vegetable garden with the kids during a workshop on May 15 ($20 per family).
Cost Cutter: Visit Winterthur & nearby Longwood Gardens this month for a single $20 admission fee to both sites during the Twice As Nice Promotion.
$5-$18 admission (includes house & gardens). Open Tues.-Sun. 800-448-3883, www.winterthur.org