Filling up your summer schedule definitely isn't difficult in Montreal, especially with the plethora of festivals that dominate the city every year. But despite all the action that's going on in the city, you should make time for one of the city's mainstays, namely the Botanical Garden.
Obviously summer would be the best time to visit Espace pour la vie's nature-centric section, what with all of the fauna coming into bloom. But there's more reason to visit than that, as the Botanical Garden has a solid setlist of special events and exhibitions that will be held throughout the summer.
Check out what's going on at the Botanical Garden this summer below.
Butterflies Go Free
Ongoing 'til April 24
Witness the life (and struggles) of the mighty caterpillar at this exhibition put on in collaboration with the Insectarium. 20,000 butterflies (of 50 different species) will also be housed within the Grande Serre Room, to be released 100 at a time, showcasing the natural beauty of these transformative insects.
The Great Gardening Weekend
May 27th to 29th
Pretty much every time spring rolls around, I have the goal of getting a garden going, even if its a small indoor setup. Unfortunately, since I have no clue what I'm doing, I never really get anywhere. If that sounds like you, then the Botanical Garden's Great Gardening Weekend might be the perfect event to check out. Learn about the art of gardening from seasoned experts and enjoy the bounty of fresh herbs and vegetables all summer long.
Face To Face With A Researcher
Every Thursday from May 19th to August 25th
Plants come in many different shapes, forms, and sizes, with some truly exotic and striking species out there. Us normal folks may not know the true breadth of nature's biodiversity, but we can learn from real researchers at the Botanical Garden who will be on-site to show you some of the coolest plants in existence.
Explore The Enchanted Fairy Garden
Begins late May
The Botanical Garden's Leslie Hancock/Ericaceae Garden is always a sight to behold. Housing over one hundred different species of Ericaceae (plants in the heath family), the garden boasts a multicoloured array of azaleas, rhododendrons, and wintergreen tea plants. But come late May, the already-beautiful natural display gets a magical upgrade and turns into a veritable enchanted forest that's a true sight to behold.
Heroes Of The Garden
June 20th to August 28th
In this interactive exhibit housed within the "poetic universe of trees," the Botanical Garden becomes a mystical journey through nature. You'll hear the tales of Ents (for all you non-fantasy fans, that means talking tree-people) for an experience that can only be described as magical.
The Arts Put On A Show At The Garden
Sundays from June 12th to August 28th
Looking for the most relaxing way to spend your Sunday? Forget Tams, because you can chill in the beautiful expanse of nature's splendour with some music played by a professional at the Botanical Gardens.
Explore The Courtyard Of The Senses
Guided tours begin June 21st
See the Botanical Garden in a new way, by which I mean without sight! In the Courtyard Of The Senses, you're given the chance to go blindfolded and go through the garden with only your ears, touch, and taste at your disposal. Yes, even your mouth plays a role, as you'll be able to taste sweet, candy-like plants throughout the journey. You can go it alone for most of the season, but guides will be available at the end of June.
Gardens Of Light
September 2nd to October 31st
An annual showcase of illuminated natural elegance, the Botanical Garden's Gardens of Light exhibition is more associated with the fall season, but the event does begin on September 2nd, which is still summer territory. During the nigh two month-long event, the Chinese and Japanese Gardens are made all the more spectacular with light fixtures and displays that pay homage to each garden's cultural roots (pun intended). To make things a tad more dynamic, you can use the Botanical Garden's app for a self-guided tour during your trip through the Gardens of Light.