Brookgreen Gardens is the floral jewel of South Carolina's coastal community. Located south of Myrtle Beach, the 9,100-acre property is a testament to the natural landscapes that surrounded this site.
Known as the Archer and Anna Hyatt Huntington Sculpture Garden, this garden was designed in 1931 by Anna Hyatt Huntington in the shape of a spread wing butterfly. Pictured on the right is one of the original drawings for the sculpture garden.
On entering the Diana Garden, the breadth of this magnificent place stands before you. The Live Oak Allée garden is comprised of 300 year-old Live Oak trees that were planted in the early 1700s when Brookgreen Gardens was a thriving rice plantation. The four wings of the butterfly offer many horticultural surprises and delights as you move deeper into the Sculpture Garden. The most notable are the Dorothy P. Peace Garden Room for Children located in the lower right wing and the Kitchen Garden found in the lower left wing. The Brenda W. Rosen Carolina Terrace Garden has a spectacular array of perennials, roses, shrubs and mature trees.
Three additional major gardens departed from the butterfly design with the focus on a formality not seen up to this point in the Gardens. The Palmetto Garden, named for the use of Sabal palmetto South Carolina's state tree, was completed in 1950. The whimsical The Fountain of the Muses Garden, displays the sculpture of the same name and takes bold garden design to new heights.
The Labyrinth at Brookgreen is the latest addition to the Gardens. Located along the north end of the Trail Beyond the Garden Wall, the new labyrinth blends with its natural surroundings. It is a medieval, seven circuit Chartres style labyrinth of shell and natural grass overlooking the natural beauty of a tributary creek of the Waccamaw River. Interpretive panels describe its history and purpose and benches are placed nearby for quiet contemplation.
The Arboretum serves as the transition between the original sculpture gardens and the E. Craig Wall, Jr. Lowcountry Center in the distance. Through the years sculpture has been added to the Arboretum among gigantic specimen trees. For those interested in the rich landscape of native plants available in the southeastern region, the Lowcountry Center Garden offers a view into our natural flora. The E. Craig Wall, Jr. Lowcountry Center is also home to Bethea's Cultural Garden, a display of vegetable and herbs grown during the plantation period here at Brookgreen Gardens.
Brookgreen Gardens continues to be a leader in horticulture and gives new meaning to the phrase "year-round garden".