Our Amazing Conservatory

Welcome to our amazing Conservatory!

In 1908: The powers-that-be in Indianapolis, hired a gifted visionary, George Kessler, a German-born landscape architect with considerable engineering, and city planning ability as well.

Kessler developed, what is known as, The Indianapolis Parks and Boulevard System, which was adopted in 1909. He had drawn a complete master plan for Garfield Park that included the Conservatory and the Sunken Gardens.

Secret: George Kessler saw our Garfield Park as the jewel of his plan.

He appreciated the Park’s rich horticultural history.The Park Community had been growing plants for years in greenhouses—enough to be used in parks all around the city. Many of these skilled growers were immigrants with a strong European heritage.

Kessler’s vision would build on this European history in designing the outdoor formal Sunken Gardens.

The Conservatory was , with curvilinear patterns and arches
in the showhouse. For years, they continued growing plants in the greenhouses on the back/east side of the building.

Decades later—after the Great Depression and the country was beginning to show signs of growth after the impact of two World Wars—the Park Community, too, began recovering. By the mid-1950’s, they were eager to replace the Showhouse.

The Burns and Burns architectural firm of Indianapolis, felt strongly about eliminating the need for interior columns—as a way to, not only increase the usable square footage, but enhance the additional space as well. Great idea!

Their solution became a first-of-its-kind in the country!

This final design was a welded aluminum and glass structure—with an Art Deco flair!  Wow. Our Conservatory: A one-of-a-kind.

It’s true.
Guests love the building:
Home of high-drama plantings and critters forcompany!

There is one activity that is particularly fun in the Conservatory—Ex-ploring!
For kids and adults. The plant life often hides little critters—just so fun to find.
And at times, they even come looking for you!

Do you love tree frogs? I love tree frogs. My granddaughter loves to name them.  And who isn’t totally thrilled with the free-flying birds?

Now. If you aren’t thrilled—Yet! Then make your way to the waterfall. Everybody loves the waterfall. What’s not to love!
That sound. . . . . . Just may induce a yawn or two.

You must visit!

There are planned adventures for kids and self-guided tours for adults and families. So much to see and hear.

During the Christmas Season we have the Poinsettia Show and Santa comes to visit—Holiday time is truly magical!

There are experiences to be had all year long in the Conservatory. And of course all over the Park! Please. . .Let us make your Day!

Click here to visit the Conservatory website for current programming and tours.

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