Kansas State University Gardens Expansion Under Way

The Kansas State University Gardens are not only among the most beautiful attractions on campus, they’re also one of the oldest. Eight years after the university was established, the College of Agriculture purchased the Gale farmstead, which eventually became the Kansas State University Gardens.

Kansas State University Gardens

Kansas State University Gardens

Among the different gardens are the Adaptive/Native Plant Garden, the Cottage Garden, the Conservatory Garden and the Butterfly Garden.

The Adaptive/Native Plant Garden features flowers and plants that can be found growing naturally in Kansas and the Great Plains. The Cottage Garden provides visitors with ideas for their own gardens with its use of herbs, fruits, vegetables and flowers that are planted around country homes.

Currently, the Conservatory Garden features collections of daylilies, iris and roses, but will soon include conifer, peony and hosta collections.

“They finished the peony collection garden walk this past fall,” said Scott McElwain, director of the Kansas State University Gardens. “This summer, a new irrigation system will be added to both the daylily and peony collection gardens. Initial plantings to both of these collection gardens will begin this fall.”

Kansas State University Gardens

Kansas State University Gardens

Hundreds of native butterflies return each summer to the Butterfly Garden, which is being cultivated into a Butterfly Waystation that will offer an even more hospitable destination for its winged visitors.

The gardens are currently under expansion with plans to add ten new or expanded gardens. You can learn more about the expansion plans on the gardens’ website.

Manhattan-area students and visitors to campus, including distance students arriving in town for commencement, should make it a point to stop and literally smell the roses, daylilies or any of the other hundreds of species of flowers and plants found in the gardens. Those inspired to cultivate their own gardens can find resources to help them on K-State’s Horticulture Information Center website.

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