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Enid A. Haupt Garden, Washington DC

Categories: Gardens, Nature & Parks
Inspirock Rating:
4.7/5 based on 55+ reviews on the web
The Enid A. Haupt Garden is a 4.2 acre public garden in the Smithsonian complex, adjacent to the Smithsonian Castle on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. It was designed to be a modern representation of American Victorian gardens as they appeared in the mid to late 19th century. It replaced an existing Victorian Garden which had been built to celebrate the nation's Bicentennial in 1976.HistoryThe garden opened on May 21, 1987 as part of the redesigned Castle quadrangle. It is named for Enid A. Haupt, who provided the $3 million endowment which financed its construction and maintenance. Initially approached with a request that she finance a small Zen garden within the quadrangle, after a review of the plans Haupt said that she was "not interested in putting money into a Zen garden...I'm only interested in financing the whole thing."The quadrangle redesign project and the Smithsonian Gardens more broadly were part of the vision of the eighth Secretary of the Smithsonian, S. Dillon Ripley, who felt that the museum experience should extend beyond the museums' buildings into the outdoor spaces.The landscape design of the Garden featured the collaborative efforts of architect Jean Paul Carlhian, principal in the Boston firm of Shepley, Bulfinch, Richardson and Abbott; Lester Collins, a landscape architect from Millbrook, New York; Sasaki Associates Inc. of Watertown, Massachusetts; and James R. Buckler, founding director of the Smithsonian's Office of Horticulture.The central feature of the garden is a symmetrically patterned parterre, flanked by the Moongate Garden to the west and the Fountain Garden to the east. The parterre measures 144 feet long by 66 feet wide; the low-growing plants that fill out the series of diamonds, fleurs-de-lis, and scallops or swags that make up the design are changed every six months, typically in September and May.
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  • This garden is out the back door (south) of the Smithsonian Castle. It is a peaceful and quiet area with beautiful garden landscaping that is actually the roof of the underground Sackler and African A...  read more »
  • We found this by accident while walking to the air museum a few blocks away. It caught our attention as there is a cafe and it was very very hot. The cafe is very nice and the food was excellent (alth...  read more »
  • An excellent hidden gem of an attraction . The lantana itself smelled wonderful . Otherwise , nestled between the Smithsonian offices this collection is rather inclusive and well laid out . Worth a vi...  read more »
  • If you stick to the Mall side of everything only, you could easily miss this gem. Beautiful landscaping. Huge array of plants, trees and flowers, and unique benches that provide respite. Wifi signal is strong in the garden and there is some shade.
  • Magnificent buildings, artwork, history, gardens, sculptures, and more. All Smithsonian buildings in this are are free to the public. You could easily spend an entire day just checking out the splendid Smithsonian locations.
  • It's a wonderful spot, meticulously manicured considering how many people and kids run around touching things that they shouldn't. This is a look, don't touch situation. I'd definitely walk through here if you're nearby as it's quite pretty to look at in the spring and summer, and it will take you all of 5 minutes to walk through the entire place.
  • Good place to take a break. Botanical, architectural, and artistic variety in the garden and/or in the adjacent museums.
  • Quiet. Beautiful--it is a garden. But...quiet, restful; the mind can work.
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