Close this search box.

Take a Walk in Nature at Shores & Islands Ohio Gardens

James H McBride Arboretum, part of Shores & Islands Gardens

Spring has sprung in Shores & Islands, Ohio gardens. And we couldn’t be more excited to get out and explore part of what makes this area special – the great outdoors.

You’re even beginning to see some flowers blooming, from crocus and snowdrops to tulips and daffodils. Spring bloom certainly is an excellent opportunity to enjoy the acres of beautiful gardens available throughout the region. Searching for signs of spring in these natural treasures is a perfect early spring activity.

Top six Shores & Islands Ohio Gardens. 

Schedel Arboretum & Gardens, Elmore

The 17-acre Schedel Arboretum & Gardens is a hidden treasure just off the Ohio Turnpike (I80/90 Exit 81) in Elmore. The gardens include a Japanese garden, a kitchen garden filled with ornamental peppers, a bonsai collection, water gardens, perennial gardens, and nearly 10,000 flowering annuals.

The expansive property also features sculpture, a visitor center offering snacks and beverages to enjoy while overlooking the gardens, an event space, and the Blair Museum of Lithophanes in the manor house. Schedel hosts many special events and workshops throughout the year and is a popular venue for outdoor weddings.

The gardens are open for self-guided tours in April and daily through October. There is an admission fee to visit.

Schoepfle Garden, Birmingham

Located in the small village of Birmingham, just south of Vermilion along the Vermilion River, Schoepfle Gardens is a 70-acre arboretum featuring 20 acres of topiaries, rose gardens, and perennial and annual flowers with miles of paved pathways. A children’s garden inspired by music features a working carousel, and guided group tram tours through the property are available. Trails along the river are adjacent to the arboretum. These gardens are a popular spot for photographers.

James H. McBride Arboretum, Huron

Located adjacent to BGSU Firelands, James H. McBride Arboretum features over 50 acres of gardens, plants, and flowering crabapple trees with accessible walking trails. The arboretum is open year-round and offers guests picnic tables and public restrooms. This beautiful park is especially popular for weddings and special occasion photos.

Ohio’s Most Beautiful Mile, Lakeside

Dubbed “Ohio’s Most Beautiful Mile,” this lakeside walking trail stretches from Oak Avenue on the western edge of the community of Lakeside to Perry Park. Multi-season perennial gardens and native plants adorn the entire lakefront path. Walkers will pass the historic Hotel Lakeside, the Lakeside dock, Bettinger Park with its Steele Memorial Gazebo, and more along the way.

Guests can experience the blooming daffodils along the water’s edge in spring. Visitors to Lakeside might also enjoy the Memorial Garden at nearby Chautauqua Park. If you time it right, you may glimpse the rare Lakeside Daisy.

Lakeside Daisy—a delicate and rare yellow daisy

The Lakeside Daisy—Visit the Shores & Islands Ohio region from early to mid-May when the endangered Lakeside Daisy is in bloom! It grows on the Marblehead Peninsula at the 136-acre Lakeside Daisy State Nature Preserve. This is one of this wildflower’s only natural U.S. populations. Lakeside Daisies grow in alvar, a type of limestone where very little else can grow. This small but mighty flower can also be spotted locally within Lakeside Chautauqua and on Kellys Island at the East Quarry Trail. It is viewable from an overlook at the Glacial Grooves Geological Preserve).

During the Lakeside Chautauqua season, a gate fee is charged to visit the community. Guided garden tours are often offered as part of the programming.

Washington Park, Sandusky

City employees maintain the beautiful Sandusky’s Washington Park. Dedicated volunteers and civic sponsors assist by generating over 100,000 plants each year in the city’s greenhouse. Visit floral mounds sponsored by local businesses and organizations, a working floral clock, a sunken Japanese garden, and the Boy with the Boot fountain. During the summer, the park hosts concerts in its gazebo and is home to many events, such as the annual 4th of July celebration and the weekly Farmer’s Market.

Jane Coates Wildflower Trail, Put-in-Bay

While not a manicured garden, the Jane Coates Wildflower Trail is a half-mile loop through a particularly beautiful wooded area filled with many varieties of wildflowers. Visitors enjoy Dutchman’s Breeches, Jack in the Pulpit, and Blue Phlox in the spring, according to the Lake Erie Islands Conservancy. Jane Coates was a former island artist known for her love of the island’s wild areas. This trail is also an excellent spot for birdwatching.

Get outside and enjoy a walk in the fresh air. We promise that our natural beauty will grow on you!

Share this:

Sponsored By

What to Read Next