Chanticleer Gardens is located just about 2 1/2 hours north of Washington, DC. Located in the region known as Brandywine Valley, the gardens home is in Wayne, Pennsylvania.
Brandywine Valley, is home to some of what could be called America’s castles. The du Pont family homes and gardens alone are worth a visit. Located in southeastern Pennsylvania, the valley is home to rolling lush green hills and two-lane country roads that transport visitors to another era, one of over-the-top gracious living. Longwood Gardens, Winterthur and Nemours are truly extraordinary. Knowing how beautiful the valley is, we were eager to experience Chanticleer Gardens, just about 30 minutes down the road from Longwood Gardens.
Like so many other estates in the Brandywine Valley, Chanticleer House was built as a second home for the Rosengarten Family. The family’s pharmaceutical company would eventually join Merck Pharmaceutical. The summer retreat home was completed in 1913. In 1924 it was expanded and became the family’s year-round residence. Son Adolph Jr. and daughter Emily, also had homes on the property.
Adolph Jr.’s home was lost to a fire. The ruins are incorporated into the gardens and it is known simply as the Ruin Garden. Emily’s home is now used as offices and classrooms.
We did not tour the house, however tours of the first floor are available by appointment. For those interested in seeing more, follow this link to a virtual tour of the home.
After Emily’s death in the 1980’s, Adolph Jr. began the process of establishing a foundation to preserve the home and gardens. The foundation owns 50 acres, 35 of which make up the gardens the public visits today. Chanticleer Gardens opened to the public in 1993.
Take a Walk With Us
Our visit to Chanticleer Gardens was a Christmas gift. We waited until spring to get the ultimate blooming experience and it definitely paid off. We have strolled through a lot of gardens in our travels, but Chanticleer proved to be very special. While 35 acres may sound like a lot, strolling the grounds was actually very relaxing and did not at all feel overwhelming. Quite the contrary. It never felt crowded.
Plenty of visitors strolled the gardens, on a Sunday afternoon, but as you can see we were able to capture people-free photos.
The paved walking trail is 1-mile in length and takes visitors on a loop through the various gardens where one can delight in the beauty of 5,000+ plants. Bell’s Woodland and Creek Garden are two of the off-trail gardens to explore. However, be mindful of where one steps. Housed along the trail are plant lists. They proved to be particularly helpful because there were so many flowers we didn’t recognize.
The “cutting garden” is home to vegetables and herbs. I loved the large washing colander and I think I need one for our greenhouse. The garden is vital to the local community, recipients of the harvest.
Take a Virtual Walk With Us
A visit to Chanticleer Gardens will not disappoint. It is the very essence of tranquility. To take a virtual walk with us, through the gardens, please click over to our Youtube Channel. And, please remember to subscribe to our channel and help us grow. It’s obligation free, just a quick email address which we never see.
If You Go
- Free parking, reservations required
- Picnic areas, one must carry out all trash
- No smoking
- No pets
- No sport activities or loud noise
- Restrooms on site
- Drinking fountain
- Wheelchair accessible path
- No food/beverage sales on-site
- Minimal gift items available, book, postcards.