Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden: Natural Beauty in Indianapolis

The Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden in Garfield Park of Indianapolis is a beautiful, serene escape from the bustle of downtown Indianapolis. The tropical flowers, flowing waterfall and tranquil fish pond will allow you to escape into a place of peace and introspection. The Sunken Garden outside allows visitors to stroll through a grassy, landscaped lawn filled with walkways and three fountains.

Video clip of the Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden in Indianapolis

The 10,000 square foot conservatory is constructed of welded aluminum and glass and is the first of its kind in the nation. The conservatory is one of the most visited attractions in the park, with visitors guiding themselves through the vast variety of plant specimens in the conservatory. Visitors can also enjoy a selection of gardening demonstrations and workshops held throughout the year.

Bridge in Garfield ParkThe Amazon River rainforest setting in the interior of the conservatory provides an environment in which a variety of tropical plants thrive. Visitors can enjoy an expansive collection of bromeliads, epiphytes, and orchids in a setting successfully replicating their natural environment. Also featured in the conservatory are tree frogs, free flying birds, butterflies, Koi fish, and other small animals native to a tropical environment. Bonsai trees and other flowering tropical plants are also included in the conservatory.

The highlight of the conservatory is a 15 foot tall granite waterfall which gracefully flows into a fish-filled pond below. Benches surround the pond, allowing visitors to sit in reflection while watching the water flow and fish swim about. This is also a popular wedding site, with many couples exchanging vows beneath the flowing waterfall inside this unique Indianapolis attraction.

Garfield Park creekOutside the windows of the conservatory, lies the Garfield Park Sunken Gardens, featuring winding walkways, benches, and three fountains for the enjoyment of visitors. Dedicated in 1916 and designed by landscape architect George E. Kessler, these European style formal gardens are a perfect complementary setting for the facing conservatory. The gardens are replanted three times yearly to coincide with the changing seasons. Tulips are featured in spring, annuals in the summer months, and mums are showcased in the fall. The Garfield Park Sunken Gardens are rivaled only by the gardens at the Indianapolis Museum of Art.

A variety of Indianapolis education opportunities exist for the beginner as well as seasoned gardener at the conservatory. Guest lecturers in horticulture, gardening workshops and demonstrations, and programs for Indianapolis kids are regularly offered throughout the year. Youth activities include the “Junior Gardener Club:, featuring gardening lessons for the 6-12 year old age group, and “Jungle Tales”, a story series with activities and crafts included for the 2-5 age group. Adult activities include conservatory tours led by the master gardeners, Taijiquan exercise sessions, and workshops in flower arrangement and backyard gardening.

Shelter at Garfield ParkA wide variety of shows and exhibits also draw visitors to the conservatory throughout the year, making it one of the best things to do in Indianapolis. Shows include the annual Holiday Poinsettia Show and Orchid Fest. During the summer months, visitors can bring a blanket and come to the Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden to enjoy the “Music in the Garden” concert series. The Sunken Garden is also available for weddings April through October, as this beautiful garden setting makes for the perfect environment for couples to exchange wedding vows.

For more information on the Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden, please visit the conservatory’s homepage.

Sunken gardens at Garfield ParkSunken gardens at Garfield Park

Sand sculpture outside the Garfield Park ConservatorySand sculpture outside the Garfield Park Conservatory

Garfield Park Conservatory and Sunken Garden
2505 Conservatory Dr
Indianapolis, IN 46203-4279