You might know Chicago as the "Windy City" or the "City of Broad Shoulders", but one of our city's most appropriate nicknames is the "Garden City." Indeed our city's seal states clearly Urbs in Horto, Latin for city in a garden. As springtime rolls around, the reason for this flowery nickname is evident: everywhere you turn, you'll see gardens big and small, in our backyards, on our parkways, even on our balconies and rooftops! Here are four gardens and flower shows where you'll find some of the best spring blooms in Chicago.
Chicago Flower & Garden Show at Navy Pier | 600 E. Grand Avenue
March 12 - 20
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show at Chicago's Navy Pier is an experience for the senses, a place where gardeners gather ideas and inspiration among blooming perennials, annuals and trees. Whether you're looking to expand your veggie patch or even just add a few pots to your patio, the beautiful gardens here — all designed by local landscape designers, builders and suppliers — will give you realistic solutions for all your gardening, greening, floral and home-related needs.
Top horticulture experts will share insights at workshops and seminars throughout the event and top Chicago chefs sharing their expertise on creating sumptuous dishes using natural and home-grown ingredients. A great menu of kid-friendly activities make this a fun event for the entire family. Visit chicagoflower.com for updated event info and a full schedule of workshops and seminars.
Macy's on State Street Flower Show | 111 N. State Street
March 20 - April 3
Every spring, Macy's on State Street bursts and blooms with the spirit of the season. During the annual Macy's Flower Show, expert florists adorn the entire store with gorgeous flowers, creating a shopping experience like no other. A wonderful array of free workshops and related events rounds out the flowery fun. This year's show, America the Beautiful, will usher in spring with a lovely in-store garden filled with flowers that celebrate our country's vast and varied landscapes-from purple mountain majesties and across the wilderness, celebrating all the destinations that make our country so beautiful.
Highlights this year include an edible flower tasting, a performance by the Apollo Chorus, Chicago's oldest musical organization as well as an in-store presentation of The Magic Tree House: A Night in New Orleans. Free to the public, Macy's Flower Show will be open during regular store hours. A wide array of cooking and floral demos make this event not just fun but also educational.
Lincoln Park Conservatory | 2391 N. Stockton Drive
Now through May 8
One of the best places in the city to catch spring blooms is at Lincoln Park Conservatory's Spring Flower Show. The beauty of spring is in full bloom here — and the glass-paned conservatory will protect you from the occasional rain shower. Located just next door to both The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and the Lincoln Park Zoo, the conservatory is a wonderful place to catch your breath after a busy day. Expect plenty of tulips and daffodils!
The Lurie Garden in Millennium Park | 201 E. Randolph Street
The Lurie Garden in Millennium Park is a peaceful, 5 acre garden that celebrates Chicago's transformation from a muddy marsh to a bold and powerful city. A 15-foot-high "shoulder" hedge encloses the garden on two sides, representative of Carl Sandburg's famous description of the "City of Big Shoulders" and a hardwood footbridge over shallow water divides the garden diagonally. Explore the pathways and footbridges and check out the blooming bulbs and perennials. Download the Look for Me in the Lurie Garden! worksheet for a guided adventure in the garden, perfect for children ages 3-6.