If you’re in Tallahassee and looking for a lovely stroll through beautiful gardens next to a lake then you’d probably want to check the Alfred B. Maclay State Gardens. Been there twice, once with a friend and then again when I decided to take my father to see some of the local Tallahassee highlights and this was our second stop after the Tallahassee plantation of Goodwood Museum and Gardens. I’ll summarize it for you – It’s absolutely wonderful.
There’s not that much background on the park, but the Visit Tallahassee blog has a good intro :
Most people will be surprised to find that right off Thomasville Road there is a 1,076 acre state park called Alfred B. Maclay Gardens. […]
he park was originally purchased in 1923 by Alfred B. Maclay to be a winter home for his family. He studied landscape design and wanted to create a garden that would bloom in the winter and early spring when the family was in Tallahassee. High blooming season is from Jan. 1st– April 30th, with the peak season usually being in late March. But whatever time of year you come when you walk into the garden you will be mesmerized by the picturesque brick walkway, secret garden, reflection pool, walled garden and hundreds of azaleas, camellia plants and Japanese magnolias. […] Sit by the reflecting pool or in the walled garden and enjoy the beauty and peacefulness. It might just be the escape you need and it is just a few minutes from everything.
Wikipedia has a bit more :
The gardens began in 1923 when Alfred Barmore Maclay (1871–1944) and his wife, Louise Fleischman, bought the site. Maclay named his gardens Killearn, after the birth place of his great-grandfather in Scotland, and developed them continuously until his death. His wife continued their development, opened them to the public in 1946, and in 1953 donated some 307 acres (1.24 km2) of their estate, including the gardens, to the Florida Board of Park Service. In 1965 the gardens were renamed in Maclay’s honor.
Want to have a look?
The gardens have a good collection of beautiful flowers, plants and trees …
If you come between January and April you can also visit the Maclay house next to the gardens …
Not a bad place to live, a wonderful life project turned state park.