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The garden has many heritage plants as well as a section devoted to wild- life. Many important and beautiful plants were developed here in the early years.


rosybloom series of crabapples in 1928, while Dr. Felicitas Svejda developed the Explorer series of hardy roses in the 1960s. Picturesque design featuring beautiful vistas and roman-


tic pathways was the de rigueur style for public parks and gardens at the turn of the 19th century. Nor was the concept of demonstration gardens new. Kew Gardens was founded in 1759, while Germany’s Sans-Souci was designed in 1825. In America, Frederick Law Olmstead was considered the father of landscape architecture: he designed both New York City’s Central Park (1859) and Montreal’s Mount Royal Park (1870s). So there were lots of precedents when it came to planning


Ottawa’s Farm. And coincident with the budding nation’s need for scientific research was a tremendous increase in international exploration during the mid-1800s. This led to exciting discoveries of new exotic plants and, just as today, Victorian and Edwardian gardeners vied with one another to grow the trendiest new variety. Therefore, greenhouses became a necessary addition to the Farm in order to test tropicals. Amid this backdrop of world events and domestic needs,


Ottawa’s Central Experimental Farm became a world-class showcase and today it is a stunning heritage treasure. For gardeners, the ornamental gardens are a major attrac-


tion, particularly the Macoun Sunken Gardens, named for W. T. Macoun, chief horticulturalist in 1898. R. Warren Oliver, the Farm’s landscape architect in the 1930s, trans- formed the foundation of the former Macoun home into a walled sunken garden after it was demolished. The formal symmetry of this garden is pleasing to the eye, while the plantings of the perennials Macoun intro-


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duced satisfy heritage appreciation. There are wonderful hybrids such as Hemerocallis ‘American Revolution’. A plane tree, a donation from Kew Gardens planted in 1896, is another notable example. Beside this towering specimen, a walkway leads the eye — then feet — down a slight incline to the ornamental peren-


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