SAH Archipedia Highlights: Gardens

by Catherine Boland Erkklia, BUS/SAH Archipedia Managing Editor | Apr 05, 2021

Celebrate the long-awaited arrival of spring by exploring gardens in SAH Archipedia! From sunken grounds to rooftop oases, there are more than 300 gardens to learn about in this open-access resource. You can Browse by Type or view our ever-growing Landscapes series, a collection of entries written under the guidance of urban landscape historian Thaisa Way at the University of Washington.

Have a photograph for an unillustrated entry? Please see our FAQs page for details on how to submit.


Kiley Garden
Kiley Garden. Photograph by Matthew Paulson, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Kiley Garden
This modernist masterwork of urban park design is the result of a collaboration between landscape architect Dan Kiley and architect Harry Wolf. The design extends the geometric proportioning system of the building complex into an intricate pattern of trees, palms, turfgrass, stone and concrete paving, fountains, pools, and runnels of the rooftop garden for the regional headquarters of the North Carolina National Bank in Tampa, Florida. 


Liliuokalani Park and Gardens
Liliuokalani Park and Gardens.
 Photograph by Augie Salbosa.

Liliuokalani Park and Gardens
 (gateway) mark the entrances to this tranquil, contemplative space in Hilo, Hawaii. Open pavilions and picturesque bridges, including the stone moon bridge, and the red-painted rest house add focal points and viewing platforms. With its winding chain of lava-rock-lined ponds and placid spaces, and its integration of Japanese and local plantings within the natural topography, this park is a respite from routine. 


Garland Farm
Garland Farm. Photograph by Curtice Taylor.

Garland Farm
Garland Farm in Bar Harbor, Maine, is where the celebrated landscape architect Beatrix Jones Farrand spent her last years in 1955–1959. The farm features Farrand’s exquisitely landscaped personal gardens, which reflect her exhaustive knowledge of horticulture and genius for landscape design.


Sunset Magazine
Sunset Magazine Demonstration Desert Garden. Photograph by R. Brooks Jeffery.

Sunset Magazine Demonstration Desert Garden
The Sunset Magazine Demonstration Desert Garden in Tucson, Arizona, explores the design possibilities of native plants in a contemporary residential setting. Designed by Guy S. Greene, the garden was intended to serve Arizona homeowners by demonstrating how to use of a range of paving materials and by developing and testing useful plant varieties. This first section of the garden was completed in 1963 and celebrated in the May issue of Sunset Magazine. Another section of the garden, completed in 1971, incorporates work by members of the Tohono O’Odham and Yaqui tribes.


Donnell Garden
Donnell Garden. Photograph by Marc Treib.

Donnell Garden
Donnell Garden in Sonoma, California, stands among the most significant projects of modern landscape architecture in the United States. The essence of the garden, one based on an opening of spatial possibility and the support of outdoor living, embodies the new sense of space—modernist space—promoted by its architects, Thomas Dolliver Church, George T. Rockrise, and Lawrence Halprin.

Founded in 1940, the Society of Architectural Historians is an international nonprofit membership organization that promotes the study, interpretation and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes and urbanism worldwide. SAH serves a network of local, national and international institutions and individuals who, by profession or interest, focus on the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life. SAH promotes meaningful public engagement with the history of the built environment through advocacy efforts, print and online publications, and local, national and international programs.

SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation
for its operating support.
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