Botany 101

This past weekend was Mothers Day here in Canada (and I think in many other parts of the world).  All I ever ask for on that auspicious day is a cup of tea, a (gluten free) cupcake, and to be able to do whatever I please… and this year, I got my wish.  The day started with tea and cupcakes and cards and a little tulip in a cup, and then it progressed to a trip to the Toronto Botanical Garden.

Full disclosure here: I have only recently become knowledgeable that Toronto even had a botanical garden through a frantic search for a fun, experiential Christmas gift for my parents.  I am not a Toronto Botanical Garden (TBG) expert, nor do I make any claims to be an expert either in botany or gardens.

Having made those caveats, I’m going to say that I found TBG to be a beautiful place to spend time with my little family.  Our two (and three-quarters) year old son had an excellent time, despite not being in the best humour upon arrival.  Funnily enough, he perked up as soon as he saw the first bed of tulips and narcissus.  There were a lot of people there (not sure why I didn’t think of that before we decided to go on Mothers Day), but while it felt busy, it didn’t feel full with all the space and greenery around.

There’s a lot of rolling hills, and Wilket Creek runs through them – Kian loved watching the ducks and listening to the “deep, dark river” (his words, not mine).


The gardens are beautiful, of course, and are grouped by theme.  We actually missed the Teaching Garden, which I think Kian would’ve enjoyed, but I’ll know it’s there for next time.

We saw a lot of families bringing in picnics or snacks, and I think that there’s a cafe there as well.  The volunteers/employees were quite friendly and helpful, especially in the shop.  Kian’s favourite part was likely a giant felled tree that had its bark stripped and was being used as a climbing frame by a horde of other small children, as shown in my lead image.  The smile he had on his face as he mastered walking on that tree was something to behold.

If you’re looking for a great place to spend a couple of hours walking around and talking about things you see, the Toronto Botanical Garden is it.  Little kids are able to enjoy both the visual beauty of the gardens, and also the freedom of running on/rolling down grassy hills and dales.  You should go.



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