Edwards Gardens

Edwards Gardens sits adjacent to the Toronto Botanical Garden. This former estate garden features perennials and roses on the uplands and wildflowers, rhododendrons and an extensive rockery in the valley. On the upper level of the valley there is also a lovely arboretum beside the children’s Teaching Garden.

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  • NatureGirl101

    Beautiful image and background of the edwards garden something lovely to see and enjoy also the fact that it gives you the sence of peace and comfort knowing that you can relax and just be yourself!!!

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    I have heard it from the website of Tourism Toronto. And I’ll be there(*^__^*)

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  • Steven Bodrug

    I was at Edwards Gardens this afternoon and was appalled by how much the park has degraded. I don’t know if this is due to a lack of funding, or just typical Canadian stinginess; probably both? The lawns were in brutal shape (compacted soil, bare patches galore, etc.) Are there no turf specialists working in the park anymore? This is one of Toronto’s premier parks; aesthetics should be of immaculate standards. The flower/plant beds were riddled with weeds and needed deadheading; which I did a little of. The new benches in the park are made of plastic and have ugly cement foundations that should be buried; so as not to blight the park. Can you not opt for more attractive benches; and ones made of actual wood? Better yet, allow artists to carve benches out of fallen tree trunks or wooden blocks and find creative ways to incorporate them into the natural topography. Moving on…there was garbage in the Don River. This is unacceptable. There needs to be crew collecting loose litter, all day long, everyday (including litter in the river). Furthermore re the river — why are there large stones used as a means to anchor the banks and stop erosion? This takes away from the River’s natural aesthetic. The shoreline should be stabilized with native vegetation (like rivers are in the wild). The roots will act like rebar and keep the banks in tact. There was also some large chunks of concrete lying in the River. For goodness sakes, where are our standards in this city?! This is disgraceful and utterly embarrassing. That should be removed ASAP! Another complaint I have is in regard to the garbage and recycling receptacles. Could you not use something that is actually of quality design? They’re dreadful, and you can see the plastic bags through the metal grates. It’s astonishing how blue collar this city still is. We just don’t understand details. Heck, even small towns and dying cities like Buffalo have higher standards for their public realm than we do; and we’re the 4th largest city in North America! Why are we so complacent with the cheapest solution for everything? The public realm is something that deserves the utmost attention — always — no exceptions. It’s time to stop being so utilitarian and actually start caring about making our parks and public spaces beautiful. Can we stop being ‘Toronto The Good Enough’ and be exceptional for once? This park could be incredible but, it’s just ok. If this is the standard we have set for one of the City’s most renowned parks, then it’s no wonder that basically every park in Toronto is in poor shape.

    • Alix Gallop

      Really buddy? Get a life. This park is enjoyed by many taxpayers. And unless you are willing to personally donate those funds to keep the park up to your ridiculous standards I suggest that you stop snd enjoy one the greenest cities in North America. If you don’t like the city move to Detroit, we will be better off without negative people like you.

      • Steven Bodrug

        You’re a citizen; not a “taxpayer”. Why are my standards ridiculous? Have you traveled abroad? Every major, first world city has far greater standards for their parks and public realm than Toronto. Even small towns manage to pay closer attention to detail than we do. Funny that you mentioned Detroit — their downtown public realm is actually nicer than ours — and they’re a dying city for crying out loud. What is wrong with expecting more out of this city? Should we just merely accept mediocrity? There are nice aspects about Edwards Gardens, but it leaves much to be desired. I actually am willing to pay higher taxes if it means we can have nicer things. Toronto is already under taxed compared to the rest of Ontario. We’ve been building a city on the cheap for decades and it shows in our shabby public realm. “I suggest that you stop snd enjoy one the greenest cities in North America” Greenery is what makes Toronto such a nice place to live, but the lack of care we put into our green spaces is embarrassing. Walk in any ravine in the city and look at how we’ve channeled our creeks and rivers with caged riprap (to prevent erosion — rather than lining banks with vegetation). Not to mention how we let raw sewage flow into our waterways via culverts and have pretty much surrendered to the destruction of invasive species such as dog strangling vine (which is choking out native plants across the city’s ravine network). Our ravines and waterways have been treated as a nuisance, rather than being embraced and protected. We brag about having so much greenery, yet we treat it like a dump. “If you don’t like the city move to Detroit, we will be better off without negative people like you.” And here is the default reply to anyone in Toronto that expects greater things out of this city and its leaders/civil servants. Do you honestly believe that I’m complaining because I hate Toronto? I’m upset because I love this city so much and I can see how much potential it possesses. It’s hard to grow up your entire life in this city and not feel cynical. This is a city that has 70 year old wooden utility poles on major downtown streets. Most cities buried their utilities decades ago. We don’t prioritize beautification. It’s deemed “gravy” by many in this city (see Denzil Minnan-Wong’s Sugar Beach/Waterfront Toronto recent grandstanding for instance.) This isn’t a city that strives for excellence. We’re simply happy enough with being “livable”. “we will be better off without negative people like you.” I was offering constructive criticism. Can’t you see the bigger picture, or do you only hear yammering? The whole point of my rant was to hopefully invoke an attitude of betterment and to change the status quo.

        • Jess Kuhlmorgen-Hille

          Dear Mr. Bodrug,

          Edwards Gardens was my sanctuary growing up in Don Mills. I went there as often as possible from toddler age once a week minimum until my family moved to a different town. I still return yearly as often as possible.

          I have seen over the decades the park change. It used to be flush with weddings, couples, families, animals, butterflies, the most stunning bridges, paths, mills, waterfalls anyone could ask to behold. Even the indoor facilities were breathtaking with the koi pond & various foliage. Unfortunately, due to funding cuts, the park can only afford so much. In other towns, the public tends to volunteer to maintain the public gardens. I would assume with such a large community like Don Mills, as well as the wealth a portion of the denizens possess, a possibility could be fundraising, memberships, incentives like memorial benches or path stones?

          It seems your main concern here is not necessarily the park itself but more so that it offends your demanding eyes. You hold high standards in a world that may not be able to produce them. You seem more inclined to complain about everything under the sun regarding City politics when you are clearly commenting on a Botanical Garden site – not the City Hall site. Shouldn’t you be more concerned about how to rectify the situation by looking solely at the problems related to said garden? Perhaps you could take this “passion” you seem to have in writing long diatribes and put that to use benefiting the park? Maybe spearhead some fundraiser? Volunteer your own personal time to look after some aspects of the garden?

          If I still lived in the great community of Don Mills – I would do it myself. Think before typing such non-sense next time and use your power to do good – not just whine like a 4 year old.

        • Sara

          I’m with you. You made many valid points. We need more people who care. Just wanted to say “ThankYou” for the best feedback I ever read.

        • Ed

          Excellent insight, and the fix is simple. We need to remember this is our city, and we as citizens should all be doing our part to make it better,nicer, cleaner. I see a lot of people complain about garbage and refuse scattered about, but have never seen anyone bend over and pick some up. I think it is time for the citizens to be more than just onlookers…time to become stewards and participants, and maybe donate time to physically help make our city a better place. Obviously the people we pay to do this job are not up to the task. Perhaps volunteer groups working hand in hand with the city to better the greenspaces is in order. Remember, it’s not the city’s land…it is OURS ! ( an extension of our own backyards)

    • Torontonian

      I have lived across from Edward’s Gardens for 10 years, and I have loved visiting the gardens. I don’t know what you were seeing there, but it’s a beautiful place, and well-kept for the most part. It is hard to change damage that is already done in terms of the Don River, but when I visit, most gardens are weedless, the lawns are nice and green, and there is a lot of wildlife to be seen. The benches are perfectly fine and so are the garbage and recycling bins. Stop complaining about things that don’t reach your crazy expectations.

    • Jennifer Falvy

      Love to hear that people care about the aesthetics. Hopefully your comments will be considered!

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  • Priya Kesavan

    Dear Edwards Gardens Community,

    I rarely read blog posts or comments and yet I found myself drawn into the discussion. I guess I too really care about our beautiful Jewel, the Edwards Gardens. Mr. Bodrug, you have perhaps sharper eyes and maybe have a background and experience in maintaining and elevating green spaces, so that all may enjoy their beauty.
    Would you like to have a chat with me, perhaps at the Gardens Cafe? Maybe we could create a fundraiser at the Edwards Gardens with Music, Poetry, Good Food that would raise funds for this serene space.
    I enjoyed 2 concerts at the Edwards Gardens this year that were funded by the Edwards Foundation.
    Perhaps we could get a matching grant from the Foundation? I believe those who participate in this discussion do care about the place that brings so much joy and serenity.
    Let me know if any of you would like to meet up.
    Sincerely, Priya

    • Steven

      Priya, I would rather chat online, if that’s alright? You can contact me on Facebook if you’d like.

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  • Edwards Garden supporter

    Every one who comes to the park please have the responsibility not to throw garbage such as coffee cups and cans everywhere. Also dog’s waste should be picked up by the dog owners. We should keep our garbage until we see the garbage containers along the trail. This beautiful garden is for everyone to enjoy and not for the purpose to pick up others’ garbage.

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  • BDC

    Most Gardens in Europe have an entrance fee. You want the park to look better than it is already then donate some money. It takes money to maintain and beautify this city garden with no cost to visitors.

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