Longwood Gardens, located in Kennett Square, PA, is known around the world for its established combination of horticulture, fine arts and education dating back to the 1900s.
The gardens’ early history preceded the native Lenni-Lenape tribe and English Quakers living on and owning the land in the 1600s. In 1906, the gardens’ main contributor, Pierre S. du Pont, bought the property. Over several decades, he began turning Longwood into what it is today. He got his inspiration from touring architectural and plant exhibits around the world.
Longwood is known for their collection, preservation and groundwork with their plants, flowers and trees, many of which were established by du Pont, whose original gardening practices still continue to influence Longwood’s current standards. As a result, the Gardens have collaborated with the University of Delaware to offer the Longwood Graduate Program which provides students with hands-on applied research opportunities in various horticultural subjects.
Throughout the year, Longwood has five different seasons for guests to enjoy: Winter Wonder held from January to March, Spring Blooms held from April to May, Festival of Fountains held from May to September, Autumn’s Colors held from October to November and A Longwood Christmas held from November to January. Each season has its own set of plants, trees and flowers in correspondence to each theme.
Check their website for exact dates and visiting information.
Research & Crop Production
Longwood partners with gardening experts globally to implement between 500 to 1,000 new plants annually. Each plant is put to use for research and fieldwork to learn how to grow, refine and nurture vegetation, as well as detect diseases. The researchers share their work in various formats such as lectures, seminars and journals both nationwide and worldwide.
Longwood Gardens focuses on conserving their 700 acres of preserved open space and enhancing the natural resources available, as influenced by their founder’s initial practices. The landscape provides a natural environment for wildlife with the absence of harmful waste.
Longwood offers a variety of events throughout the year from fountain shows, music and fine arts, classes, displays, family and children programs and tours. For more information on upcoming events, visit their website.
K-12 Programs: Longwood offers school group events for grades K-12. Class topics vary for each age group, and include subjects such as how plants and trees grow and survive.
Longwood also offers virtual field trips taught by field experts. Some of the topics include planting and caring for trees, the life cycle of plants, and pollination among flowers.
Longwood also offers self-guided groups for schools. The curriculum includes activities centered around pollination and tree activities, with a focus on using observation skills, sketching, cartooning and analyzing the parts of flowers and trees.
Scouts Programs: The Gardens also offers tree and plant programs for both boy and girl scouts. In the tree program, attendees will learn about various types of trees, leaves and bark. In the plant program, participants will experience a horticulturists’ day on the job.
Summer Activities: Longwood also offers “Summer Camp in a Box.” Three separate programs are available from gardening, seeds and nature, each lasting for one whole week. Each program can be done from home. To participate, pick your choice of activity and week, and the box will be mailed to you in the continental U.S. only. More information can be found on Longwood’s website.
Internships: Longwood Gardens also offers internships for both U.S. students and international students. For U.S. students, there are a variety of programs to choose from, and each lasts for either 3 months or 12 months depending on the curriculum. Some areas include arboriculture, greenhouse production, marketing & communications and natural land stewardship. For international students, four select program options are available from horticulture, education, library science and marketing & communications. For more information on Longwood’s internship programs, visit their website.
Professional Horticulture Program: The Gardens also offers a program specially formulated for high school graduates. Attendees participate in applied educational projects with Longwood’s staff with topics ranging from fundamentals of horticulture, plant health care and horticultural crop production.
Continuing Education: Longwood also offers online classes with various subjects including Floral Design Certificate, Everything About Orchids Essentials, Floral Spotlight: Longwood In Season and Landscape Design and Sketching for Floral Designers.
Visiting Longwood Gardens
Longwood Gardens is located on US Route 1, about 3 miles northeast of Kennett Square, PA at 1001 Longwood Road, Kennett Square, PA 19348. Free on-site parking is available.
Reserved handicapped parking is available near the entrance. Guests may drop off passengers at the entrance using the double traffic lane in front of the Visitor Center. During peak visitation times, free off-site parking may be used if our on-site lot is full. Transportation is provided between the off-site parking and the Visitor Center entrance.
For additional information on parking and getting to Longwood, visit their website.
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