Adkins Arboretum, 12610 Eveland Road, Ridgely, (410) 634-2847, adkinsarboretum.org. Located on the Eastern Shore, this 400-acre sanctuary is home to a huge collection of plants native to Maryland as well as 600 species of local plant life total. There are also trails along streams, meadows, and gardens, and plenty of year-round programs for nature lovers to enjoy.
Brookside Gardens, 1800 Glenallan Ave., Wheaton, (301) 962-1400, montgomeryparks.org/brookside. The 50-acre garden has aquatic cards, woodlands areas, a fragrance garden, and many other displays to check out. See a plant that catches your interest? Look it up in the on-site horticultural reference library.
Cylburn Arboretum, 4915 Greenspring Ave., (410) 367-2217, cylburn.org. Spread over 200 acres, this urban oasis offers everything from rose gardens to wildflowers and tree collections. There are also 3.5 miles of trails on the grounds, great for a nature hike or to observe birds and wildlife.
Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens, 3100 Swann Drive in Druid Hill Park, (410) 396-0008, rawlingsconservatory.org. The conservatory’s array of greenhouses feature plants from Mediterranean, desert, and tropical climates, as well as dedicated rooms for orchids and palms.
Dumbarton Oaks, 1703 32nd St. NW, Washington, D.C., (202) 339-6401, doaks.org. Situated near the luxurious rowhomes in Georgetown, this research library and botanical garden features lawns, gardens, and a mix of flowers and other plant life, with a large mansion—part of which dates back to the 19th century—situated in the middle of the complex.
Ladew Topiary Gardens, 3535 Jarrettsville Pike, Monkton, (410) 557-9466, ladewgardens.com. The former estate of Harvey Ladew features one of the finest topiary collections around, spread out over 22 acres. Visitors can also see the manor house where Ladew, an avid fox hunter, once lived.
Longwood Gardens, 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square, Pa., (610) 388-1000, longwoodgardens.org. This may be a bit of a haul, but it’s worth the trip. The grounds feature more than 1,000 acres’ worth of gardens, conservatories, and fountains where you can spot azaleas, magnolias, hollys, orchids, and much more.
Sherwood Gardens, one block east of 4100 St. Paul St., guilfordassociation.org/sherwood. Set amongst the early-20th-century mansions in Guilford, the 6 acres of tulips—comprising more than 25 varieties—offer one of the most colorful and picturesque settings in the city.