Original WPA Formal Garden

The original garden consisted of four garden rooms, a reflecting pool, and the conservatory. These rooms are now used to display a portion of the garden's collections.

East: Positioned as the northeast quadrant of the original garden, this room is nearest the Pavilion of the Two Sisters. This room contains the newest Enrique Alférez Sculpture, Renascence (1998), set among a mixed border of grasses, perennials, annuals and other plants. The exposure of this border spans from full sun to shade. The 90+ year old Peggy Read Oak is located in this room, named for the first President of the Friends of City Park who was instrumental in saving the garden from destruction. Another bed in this room contains old garden roses and hybrid tea roses.

North: Positioned as the northwest quadrant, this room contains the herbaceous perennial and tropical gardens. The most imposing feature of this room is the impressive 130+ year old Alférez Oak, named for the artist responsible for most of the sculptural elements in the garden. The tropical garden is the showcase of the garden's extensive collection of gingers including Alpinia, Hedychium, Costus, Curcuma, Kaempferia, and other genera from the family Zingiberaceae interspersed with other tropical plants. This room also contains numerous Camellia japonica specimens.

West: Positioned as the southwest quadrant, this room contains the garden's woody ornamental collection featuring a variety of shrubs and woody perennials.

South: Positioned as the southeast quadrant, this is the smallest room, containing a few ornamental grasses, and various bulbs.

Runways: The grass runways serve as the primary axis through the original garden. The primary east-west axis connects the Pavilion of the Two Sisters on the east with the Conservatory on the west. A sundial (1983) created by Enrique Alférez sits at the intersection of this main axis and the easternmost north-south axis. At the corners are four art-deco benches with animals sitting beneath them also created by Alférez (1932). This north-south axis connects the original main entrance, located at the Grass Gates (1982) to the formal rose garden, the Parterre. The secondary east-west axis transverses the Azalea and Camellia Garden through two arbors, the parterre and finally to the Demonstration Garden.

WPA Garden