Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Nova Scotia National Historic Site #1: Halifax Public Gardens

After the 1750s, large, lavish gardens were very popular in Halifax. By the 1780s gardening competitions had developed. In 1867 a 2-acre plot of land was opened by then Chief Justice of Nova Scotia, Sir William Young, to an appreciative public. The park later amalgamated with the 1837 Nova Scotia Horticultural Society Garden to produce the Halifax Public Gardens.

The Halifax Public Gardens were promoted at the time by the Nova Scotia Horticultural Society as a place that would be "accessible to all classes," and where they could find "health and cheerfulness. The Halifax Public Gardens were named a National Historic Site in 1984, and today are still one of the finest examples of Victorian Gardens remaining in Canada.

(Flower beds commemorating the 2011 Canada Winter Games, to be hosted in Halifax next year, and the 100th Anniversary of the Canadian Navy celebrated this summer during International Fleet Review Week.)

(Perhaps the most beautiful section of the Gardens is this peaceful stream. It's also probably one of the most photographed areas of the Gardens.)

(I love to take a stroll under the leaning Aralia elata - Devil's Walking Sticks - at the south-west corner of the Gardens.)

(I also like to look up at tall trees in wonder, especially if they aren't standing straight.)

(The Public Gardens bandstand was designed in 1887 by prominent Halifax Architect, Henry Busch, in honour of Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee.)

(It's hard to see, but the tree in the middle, closest to the camera is a Korean Fir that was planted there on July 31, 1988. It was donated by the Korea Veterans Association to honour all those who fought and died in the Korean War from 1950-1953. Incidentally, the Korean War is still going on, and is currently in its 60th year.)

(This giant Oak tree was planted on June 15, 1939 by His Majesty King George VI, during his Royal Tour to Canada and the United States with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.)

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