Growing up in Durham, Duke Gardens was always a magical place to me. It was somewhere that my family and I would go almost every week and there was simply nothing better than going to explore the Gardens on a nice day. Children can run around in the open field near one of the ponds, or you can grab a light lunch at the cafe that is nestled inside the garden. There are also miles of pathways and trails to walk along, and in the spring with all the blooming flowers you will not want to leave. Unfortunately, I do not get to go to Duke Gardens every week now but the place still holds a sense of beauty and awe for me and I go back as often as I can.
One of my favorite things about Duke Gardens is how old and established all of the plants and trees are. The Gardens just celebrated their 75th anniversary in 2014 and many of the trees and plants have been around that long! The Magnolia trees are some of the most beautiful that I have ever seen and a stand as a symbol for Duke Gardens.
The gardens are also divided into four areas: the Historic Core and Terraces, the H.L Blomquist Garden of Native Plants, the William Louis Culberson Asiatic Arboretum and the Doris Duke Center Gardens (including the Page-Rollins White Garden). With these distinct garden areas there is always something new to see and explore, regardless of if you only have a few mixtures or few hours – you will always find something!
You can learn more about Duke Gardens by taking part in some of their programs and becoming a Friend of Duke Gardens, which insures that the Gardens are maintained and supported for years to come, so that everyone can have a change to appreciate their beauty!