Stroll acres of formal and informal gardens at Biltmore Estate, designed by America's foremost landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted.
(Read more about Biltmore's Horticulture History.)
See a Summer Gardens Photo Tour | Winter Gardens in Snow
Olmsted originally planned to include many varieties of fruits and vegetables in the "Flower and Vegetable Garden," which came to be called the Walled Garden. George Vanderbilt, however, wanted primarily "a garden of ornament," so the garden was transformed over time.
Look for your favorite butterflies in the Butterfly Garden, which is encircled by the original holly hedge. Stop to smell not just the roses, but the woody plants in the Scented Border. As you walk down the main arbor, notice the many varieties of grapes and gourds hanging down above you, which provide shade and food for several species of birds during the summer months. Step back in time along the Victorian Border, which features perennials and annuals common to the time in which Biltmore was constructed
The lower half of the Walled Garden features 50 varieties of roses grown at the end of the 19th century plus modern varieties and All–America Roses. You'll find traditional garden structures such as a maypole and double arch surrounded by over 2,000 roses, planted exactly as it was when the Vanderbilts lived at Biltmore.
The glass–roofed Conservatory, designed by Biltmore House architect Richard Morris Hunt, nurtures flowers and plants for Biltmore House and tender bedding plants for the gardens—just as it did in Vanderbilt's day. Its central room is a Palm House where a large collection of palms, ferns, and other foliage plants thrive year round.
Feel like you’re in France’s Versailles with a stroll through the Italian Garden. Statuary and lilypad-filled reflecting pools conjure a European atmosphere.With its three symmetrical pools, manicured lawns, and classical statuary, the elegant Italian Garden is the perfect setting for quiet reflection. The three pools are filled with koi and goldfish, as well as many varieties of aquatic plants, including waterlillies, elephant ears, and papyrus. But the stars of the show are the Victoria Water Lilies, which look like giant floating cake pans with spines and bear night–blooming, pineapple–scented flowers. Less formal than the Italian Garden, the four–acre Shrub Garden is a rich, picturesque landscape with hundreds of woody plants. Adjacent is the largest of the Biltmore gardens, the Azalea Garden is renowned for its extensive collection of native and hybrid azaleas. This 15–acre garden features more than 1,000 azaleas grow alongside magnolias, dogwoods and conifers.
See a Summer 2012 Gardens Photo Tour
Biltmore is known far and wide for its annual spring "Biltmore Blooms festival of flowers". Over 100,000 tulips and other spring bulbs turn the seasonal beds around the estate into carpets of color. See our Biltmore Blooms festival of flowers Guide.
Hundreds of vibrant chrysanthemums and salvias fill the Walled Garden each Fall. See our Biltmore Fall Guide.
Walk around Bass Lake below the Azalea Garden for beautiful views (1/2 walk from the Walled Garden and 1/2 mile around the lake). It's a good place to catch a glimpse of Canadian geese, wood ducks, mallards, great blue herons, and belted kingfishers. See our Biltmore Hiking & Outdoors Guide for more.
Explore a mile-long sunflower patch where the sunflowers grow up to 6 feet tall with three blooming times this year – early June, early July and early September.
Go to the Biltmore Estate Web site to buy advance discount tickets!