What’s Blooming at Allan Gardens?

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #64! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 14/ 52

While waiting for more spring flowers to show up outdoors, I cycled to Allan Gardens Conservatory, located in downtown Toronto, to see what’s blooming. I had so much fun exploring the Conservatory. The first two pictures in this post are from my archive. The remaining pictures are new from the visit.

Allan Gardens Conservatory

The domed Allan Gardens Conservatory was initially built in 1909 by Robert McCallum in a neo-Classical and Edwardian style. It was expanded several times during the 1920s, in 1956, 1957, and in 2004 with the addition of six greenhouses.

Allan Gardens Conservatory.
Allan Gardens Conservatory

Behind the ordinary white doors, in total, the Conservatory’s six greenhouses cover approximately 1,500 square metres (16,000 sq ft). Each with its own distinct climate and associated plant collection:

  1. Arid House for cacti and succulents such as barrel cactus, jade plant, agave and aloe.
  2. Orchid House for a stunning collection of orchids and bromeliads mixed with a variety of flowering tropical plants and vines.
  3. Palm House also known as ‘The Dome’ contains palms, bananas and other tall plants.
  4. Temperate House for citrus, olive trees, and seasonal floral displays.
  5. Tropical Landscape House for plants like cycads, gingers, hibiscus and a jade vine.
  6. Children’s Conservatory is closed to the public but offers horticultural programs for children.
Looking up the dome of Allan Gardens Conservatory.
Looking up the 16-sided dome of Allan Gardens Conservatory

Inside the Conservatory, from floor to ceiling and on both sides of the pathways, are numerous plants, some with stunning flowers and some with fruits.

Inside Allan Gardens.
Inside Allan Gardens Conservatory

Two small ponds with soft sounds of water and distinct features add to the charms of the gardens.

Koi fish pond.
At the Koi pond, bright koi fish swim around Leda and the Swan sculpture
Turtle pond.
At the Turtle pond, turtles pile up to warm themselves in the sun

Below is a sample of what’s blooming during my visit. I save the cacti and orchids for future posts. Click on the arrows or swipe to see the slides.

It was a wonderful visit to see so many gorgeous plants and landscape designs in a charming setting. Allan Gardens once again gave me warmth and a mood booster. I’m thankful for nature’s leafy beauty worlds away yet close to home.

Allan Gardens Conservatory is open year round. Admission is free. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the Conservatory provides a few spectacular flower shows annually. I hope the flower shows resume this year as I look forward to revisiting the Conservatory.

Was any of the flowers in my slideshow new to you? How has your week been?

Shared with #CellpicSunday, #LifesStories, #PPAC43, #SpringFestival2022.

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110 thoughts on “What’s Blooming at Allan Gardens?

  1. quiall April 8, 2022 / 8:28 am

    What a beautiful jaunt through the gardens! What a great way to spend a day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 6:59 pm

      Yes, especially when the weather was still cool outside. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. leannelc April 8, 2022 / 8:42 am

    Absolutely gorgeous Natalie – it reminded me of a small version of Singapore’s Gardens By The Bay where they have huge attriums like this smaller version – complete with statues etc

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:03 pm

      Leanne, I’m pleased you like this Conservatory. The staff have been doing such an excellent job taking care of so many plants, fish and turtles in the six greenhouses, and a park outside the Conservatory.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Janet Alcorn April 8, 2022 / 8:55 am

    So lovely! I especially like the angel’s trumpets. I may have to plant a couple of those now that I live somewhere with mild enough winters.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:04 pm

      Janet, I hope you take advantage of your climate and plant the angel’s trumpets. They have beautiful shapes, colours, and provide good shades.


  4. Susanne April 8, 2022 / 9:08 am

    How wonderful to visit that conservatory!! I visited one like it in Göteborg (Sweden) with my sister a few years ago, it was total bliss. Always fascinating to explore all the plants in such a pleasant setting too.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:07 pm

      Susanne, Total bliss is an excellent description of this type of visit. I was so engrossed in the gardens and felt so good when I left.


  5. Amila April 8, 2022 / 9:27 am

    It looks like a beautiful garden. All these flowers are beautiful. I love to see all these turtles in the turtle pond. Just lovely!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:09 pm

      Amila, The turtles are fun to watch. They were stretching their limbs like people sunning on a beach.


  6. Dan Antion April 8, 2022 / 9:29 am

    I enjoy walking through conservatory gardens, but I never remember (or think to write down) the names. Your photos are beautiful.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:11 pm

      Thank you, Dan, for your compliment about my photos. I try to learn plant names and thankfully, this Conservatory labels them. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:12 pm

      Yes, they stretched their limbs like humans sunning on a beach.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Jackie April 8, 2022 / 12:50 pm

    It’s been on my mind to pay a visit. I hope the flower shows come back too.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:14 pm

      It was nice and quiet when I was there on a weekday morning. They set up a temporary entrance on the west side of the Conservatory while some renovations are in progress.


  8. Ally Bean April 8, 2022 / 2:00 pm

    Red clivia is a new flower for me. It’s gorgeous as are those koi. So nice to see photos of colorful things. Happy Weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:16 pm

      Ally, I was looking for colours, too and the Conservatory delivered. Have a great weekend!


  9. Gary A Wilson April 8, 2022 / 2:10 pm

    Like a collection of different arboretums. I love places like this. My wife and I had a chance to do one of the most famous ones in the LA basing last year but it was so hot that we decided at the last moment to give it a pass. Disappointing after looking forward to this part of the trip for a couple of weeks. It was the Huntington Botanical Gardens. They say that it takes several days to see everything and we wouldn’t have lasted more than an hour or two.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:22 pm

      Gary, I hope you get to visit the Huntington Botanical Gardens when it’s cooler. Hot weather tires me out quickly, too.


  10. Thistles and Kiwis April 8, 2022 / 3:37 pm

    I just love places like this and of course Botanic Gardens, Great pictures to Natalie! Thanks yet again for a lovely start to Saturday mornings!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:25 pm

      I’m pleased you like this Conservatory and my photos. I was engrossed with these beautiful gardens and felt so good when I left. Happy weekend!


  11. Jo April 8, 2022 / 5:04 pm

    How beautiful! I love that jade vine….

    Liked by 2 people

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:28 pm

      I learned that jade vine is from the Philippines. It’s beautiful and unique.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jo April 8, 2022 / 7:29 pm

        The Botanical Gardens in Cairns has it draped over one of those walks that usually has wisteria on it. Just magnificent.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Debbie April 8, 2022 / 7:13 pm

    Hi Natalie, that conservatory looks amazing! Such a beautiful place at this time of year. We’re enjoying our autumn but it’s been a very wet start!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 7:30 pm

      Hi Debbie, We’ve been having light spring showers here, too. April showers bring May flowers 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 9:11 pm

      I find this conservatory just the right size to explore and it always looks beautiful no matter which season I visit. If you visit Toronto again, I’d be happy to take you here.


  13. Melis April 8, 2022 / 8:45 pm

    Oh wow! What a gorgeous place! I’d have to spend a full day just wandering about inside all that Plant Magic 🙂

    Thank you for hosting us again! Hope you have a lovely weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 8, 2022 / 9:15 pm

      Melissa, Yes, this conservatory is beautiful and charming. I enjoyed my visit and felt great when I left. Have a fantastic weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Marsha April 8, 2022 / 11:31 pm

    Gorgeous plants and statues all the way through. A lot of the flowers were new to me. The jade one is particularly unusual, isn’t it? I bet you could spend hours there. Great place to take pictures. Does it smell luscious? I could almost smell the moisture and the fragrances. Fabulous post, Natale.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:10 am

      Marsha, I learned that the jade vine is from the Philippines. I saw it in full bloom a few years ago and it was gorgeous. On this visit it was about half bloom. Its colour and shape are unique. The gardens had a nice earthy smell and soft fragrance from the flowers. I’m glad you think my post is fabulous.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha April 9, 2022 / 11:25 am

        I’ve seen a lot of jade plants, and they are some of my favorites, but I’d never seen the fine. It’s fun to see new flowers and plants. I love botanical gardens.


        • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 12:43 pm

          Botanical gardens are educational. This Conservatory introduced me to the jade vine a few years ago. I haven’t seen it anywhere else. I’m happy to share it with you.

          Liked by 1 person

  15. Maria April 9, 2022 / 1:49 am

    What a beautiful place! Especially the 16-sided dome. I’ve always been amazed by dome’s, both houses and greenhouses. I’ve never lived in one, or had a greenhouse like that, but they are fascinating. Thank you for this treat 🙂 Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:38 am

      You’re welcome, Maria. Dome shape is visually interesting and 16-sided glass dome is uncommon around here. It was a wonderful visit to the Conservatory. I felt great when I left. The plant colours and warm temperatures in the greenhouses were therapeutic.


  16. Ju-Lyn April 9, 2022 / 2:25 am

    Spectacular visit, Natalie! Is that jade vine for real? I had to look at it several times, and it still looks like a sculpture!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:41 am

      Ju-Lyn, The jade vine is for real. I’ve only seen it in this Conservatory. I saw it in full bloom a few years ago and it was gorgeous. On this visit it was about half bloom and beautiful.


      • Ju-Lyn April 14, 2022 / 5:56 pm

        It’s the kind of plant I each to touch & feel – it looks so amazing!


        • Natalie April 14, 2022 / 8:22 pm

          The petals are smooth to the touch. When it’s in full bloom, it looks like a big turquoise chandelier.


          • Ju-Lyn April 25, 2022 / 9:47 pm

            I love it when nature baffles the senses!


            • Natalie April 25, 2022 / 9:52 pm

              Yes, Nature is amazing and generous with her gifts to us.


  17. Denyse Whelan Blogs April 9, 2022 / 3:39 am

    What a colour-filled delight this post was! I miss lots of colour at the moment because the dreadful rains have been pretty nasty in terms of damage in some areas. It IS Autumn here and I am glad to say that despite the challenges, our camellias are showing themselves. I miss the opportunity to visit places of magnitude like these that cities have. Thanks for the link up. I had a post I HAD to write! Denyse

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:46 am

      Denyse, How nice that your camellias are blooming. They are beautiful with layers of petals. It was therapeutic to visit the Conservatory and fill my senses with all the colours that I love. Thank you for linking up. I’ll be over to your blog this weekend. Have a great week!


      • Denyse Whelan Blogs April 13, 2022 / 2:44 am

        Thank you so much for linking your blog post up for Life’s Stories my fortnightly blogging link up at Denyse Whelan Blogs.

        I appreciate your support and continuing blogging connections and friendships.

        I will be back with the next #LifesStories link up on Monday 25 April 2022.



        • Natalie April 13, 2022 / 9:41 am

          You’re welcome, Denyse. Have a great week!


    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:48 am

      The staff did an excellent job growing and displaying plants in this Conservatory. Thank you Moumita for stopping by. Have a great week!


  18. trentpmcd April 9, 2022 / 8:26 am

    Looks like a great place to spend a little time exploring. Always nice to see what is in bloom… Hope your weekend is goign well 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:52 am

      Trent, I greatly appreciate this Conservatory. It’s well-maintained, just the right size to explore, and free to the public. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Writing Sparkle April 9, 2022 / 9:34 am

    I would love to visit the Allan Gardens Conservatory, it looks beautiful. Thanks for coffee Natalie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:54 am

      Shari, This Conservatory is a wonderful place to visit. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week!


  20. rawsonjl April 9, 2022 / 10:02 am

    Your photos are just beautiful and make me want to check out our local botanical gardens… perhaps next week during April vacation!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 11:56 am

      Spring is a good time to visit gardens while the flowers are in bloom. I hope you find time for at least one of your local botanical gardens during your vacation.


  21. Kirstin April 9, 2022 / 1:55 pm

    So beautiful. I love visiting botanical gardens.


    • Natalie April 9, 2022 / 6:15 pm

      Thanks, Kirstin. This Conservatory is beautiful and just the right size to visit.


  22. csuhpat1 April 9, 2022 / 9:44 pm

    So very beautiful. Love the turtles. Would love to visit the place. Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.


    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:08 am

      Thank you, Patrick, for stopping by. Have a great week!


  23. smkelly8 April 9, 2022 / 9:48 pm

    The lush garden photos are so uplifting on this gray, gloomy day we’re having.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:14 am

      The gardens in this Conservatory are great mood boosters.


  24. Lydia C. Lee April 9, 2022 / 10:15 pm

    I love those gardens, there’s a similar one in Melbourne but nothing like it in Sydney. How wonderful. Especially the turtles!


    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:16 am

      The turtles got the right idea, relaxing in the soft sunlight.


  25. Retirement Reflections April 9, 2022 / 11:09 pm

    Hi, Natalie – I agree that a walk through these gardens can be a very positive mood booster. Once again your photos are brilliant — thank you for sharing them with us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:21 am

      You’re welcome, Donna, and thank you for you compliment about my photos. A visit to these gardens made me feel like spring started long before March 20.


  26. Antoinette Truglio Martin April 10, 2022 / 8:45 am

    The conservatory looks amazing! ThankS for the tour.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:22 am

      You’re welcome, Antoinette. Thank you for joining me virtually.


  27. Astrid April 10, 2022 / 12:13 pm

    This sounds so cool! I’m fascinated by cycads after having read Oliver Sacks’ book Island of the Colorblind, since the second part of the book (not the part about the island of the colorblind) deals with cycads and an intriguing neurological condition indigenous people of Guam suffered after consuming lots of them.


    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 1:41 pm

      That sounds like an interesting book. Some plants are edible, some have medicinal properties and some are not for human consumption.

      Liked by 1 person

  28. photobyjohnbo April 10, 2022 / 7:45 pm

    Toronto is on my list of places to visit in Canada, and now I know of a public garden where I can let my camera run wild. Thanks for sharing this beautiful location.


    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 7:57 pm

      John, I’d recommend a visit to this Conservatory when you’re in Toronto. It’s free, opens year round, just the right size to explore and the plants are gorgeous.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Min Write of the Middle April 10, 2022 / 8:09 pm

    Hi Natalie – wow what a beautiful Conservatory! The domed roof reminds me very much of a similar structure at the Mount Cootha Botanic Gardens here in Brisbane. I think it’s called theTropical Display Dome. Anyway – the plants at your Conservatory are beautiful! What a lovely outing. Hope you have a wonderful week!


    • Natalie April 10, 2022 / 9:45 pm

      Thank you, Min, for joining me at Weekend Coffee Share linkup. Good to know about the Botanical Gardens in Brisbane as I hope to visit Australia one day. The plants at Allan Gardens Conservatory brightened up my day. I’m pleased you like them. Have a wonderful week!


  30. Rowena April 11, 2022 / 12:59 am

    Hi Natalie.
    Thank you so much for taking us on your walk through the conservatory. The building itself was outstanding, and all the different gardens were so full of colour and inspiration. It must be quite something to go there during a Canadian Winter.
    Our climate here in Sydney is so different. In one sense over the last few years, when we haven’t been copped up at home with covid, we’ve had bushfires and now floods although we’ve had a bit of bad luck…or climate change has ramped things up.
    It was also interesting for me to see all the plants copped up like this and they initially seemed a bit caged. Our garden is largely left to its own devices and my parents have a free range cottage style garden including self-seeding camellias and a carpet of self-sown snowbells and forget-me-nots each Spring. I also do a bit of bushwalking. However, a more structured approach to gardening also has it’s appeal and they’re very beautiful.
    My favourite photos were the koi pond and the turtles.
    I hope you have a great week.
    Best wishes,


    • Natalie April 11, 2022 / 8:25 am

      Hi Rowena, This Conservatory offers beautiful plants year-round and it’s a wonderful ‘escape’ during winter. It’s located in downtown Toronto where land is at a premium so it’s different from a typical and large botanical garden out in the suburbs. I find its size just right to explore for an hour or two. Outside and around the Conservatory is a park with more space and more spread out trees but that gives a different feel. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week!

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Rowena April 11, 2022 / 11:41 am

    Hi Natalie,
    I decided to head to Google Maps and visit the Conservatory and had a bit of a wonder around the area. I really liked the historic churches next to the park and the big mural. I also came across the Toronto Music Gardens and was quite intrigued. Have you been there and heard the cello music? My cousin is a cellist and she would love it. She does performances in a park in Ballarat i Victoria. I’ll have to ask her about the gardens. She is also a yoga instructor. I am intrigued by music and composition but writing is my thing.
    Best wishes,
    PS I loved the ornamental onion plants and might try to plant some in our garden.


  32. Sue from Women Living Well After 50 April 11, 2022 / 4:10 pm

    Hi Natalie, what a beautiful conservatory. I love visiting the Botanical Gardens with my grandsons. Gardens are so uplifting and I’ve been fortunate to visit some in other countries such as Madrid, Barcelona. My only disappointment was we didn’t have time to visit the Butchart Gardens in Victoria BC but I did get to have dinner with you and Donna so that was a wonderful alternative. Take care and thanks for the beautiful photos as always. x


    • Natalie April 11, 2022 / 4:52 pm

      Hi Sue, Meeting you and Donna in Victoria was wonderful. Hopefully we’ll meet again and longer next time. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week!


  33. Jennifer Jones April 11, 2022 / 7:07 pm

    Beautiful post Natalie. Spring is showing its face in your part of the world. It’s good to see as our gardens are starting to go to sleep as we get closer to winter. I would love to walk through that conservatory and look up at the dome. Beautiful!


    • Natalie April 11, 2022 / 8:32 pm

      Thank you, Jennifer. After my visit to this Conservatory, it felt like Spring started earlier than the official date on the calendar. I enjoyed seeing the beautiful plants and flowers. I’m pleased you like my post. Have a great week!


  34. Julie April 12, 2022 / 1:10 am

    The jade vine looks so interesting. For a moment, I thought it was one of those Chihuly glassworks. I had to look up that jade vine is an actual plant.


    • Natalie April 12, 2022 / 8:44 am

      Yes, the jade vine looks like a big chandelier. Its turquoise colour is unusual and gorgeous.


  35. Teresa April 15, 2022 / 8:48 pm

    What a wonderful day to be out and about.


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