The More You Grow: Winston-Salem’s Historic Gardens Guide

In Winston-Salem, warmer temps and longer days usher in weekly farmers market trips, garden workshops, farm-fresh tastings, and heirloom garden strolls, including historic gardens that date back over 250 years. Read on to build your own garden tour through some of our fastest-growing attractions (literally). Plus, find out where to grab fresh produce during your visit.


Stop #1: Historic Bethabara Park

One step into Historic Bethabara Park will transport you to 18th-century North Carolina. These gardens date back to 1753 when the Moravians first settled here. Explore two centuries of gardening traditions as you meander through the reconstructed Hortus Medicus, the country’s oldest known medicinal garden, and the 1759 Community Garden (then referred to as the “Kitchen Garden), the only known well-documented colonial community garden in the United States.

2147 Bethabara Road • Winston-Salem, NC 27106 • (336) 924-8191

Stop #2: Old Salem Museums & Gardens

One of America’s most authentic historic attractions, Old Salem Museums & Gardens give visitors an up-close and in-depth look into 18th and 19th-century Moravian life. Stroll through the Miksch heirloom garden, and be don’t miss the Single Brothers’ Garden, an award-winning restoration garden and the largest interpreted garden in Old Salem. If you’re looking for even more history, buy a ticket from the Old Salem Visitor Center to tour the historic buildings and learn from costumed interpreters.

Visitor Tip: Plan your visit for “Salem Saturdays,” which encourages hands-on learning with costumed interpreters.* Also, plan to arrive early for a visit to Cobblestone Farmers Market from 9 a.m. until noon. This producer-only farmers market partners with local vendors to bring fresh products like seasonal vegetables, ethically farmed meats, local dairy, and more to the heart of the city.

*Salem Saturdays is included with general admission to Old Salem Museums & Gardens.

900 Old Salem Road • Winston-Salem, NC 27101 • (336) 721-7300

Reynolda House Fall 2016-115_cmyk_s (1)

Stop #3: Reynolda Gardens

Early 20th-century Reynolda Gardens is just 10 minutes away from Old Salem, making it ideal for the next stop on your garden tour. Planned by Katharine Reynolds, wife of tobacco baron R.J. Reynolds, and landscape architect Thomas Sears, the expertly manicured gardens have served as a gift to the community continuously for more than 100 years. Open the doors to the 1913 greenhouse to reveal an oasis of colorful and lush plant life. Stroll the formal garden that incorporates elements of Japanese architecture and classical, European gardens. Admire more than three hundred rose bushes, selected from varieties of tea, hybrid tea, hybrid perpetual, and multiflora roses listed on the 1917 plan. Additionally Japanese weeping cherry, saucer magnolia, and Japanese cedar are among the featured trees that border the lawn. While here, take a self-guided tour of Katharine’s former home, now the Reynolda House Museum of American Art. And don’t forget to bring your binoculars! As part of the North Carolina Birding Trail, Reynolda Gardens make for excellent bird-watching.

Plan ahead for their Spring Workshop Lineup

100 Reynolda Village • Winston-Salem, NC 27106 • (336) 758-5593

Stop #4: The Arboretum and Gardens at Tanglewood Park

From Reynolda Gardens, venture the short drive to Clemmons, a quaint Winston-Salem suburb, to see 26 spectacular gardens in the Tanglewood Park Arboretum and Gardens. Get lost in the rose gardens next to the Historic Manor House, and marvel at rows and rows of seasonal flowers and ornamental shrubs, or wander the wildflower garden for NC native plants. Discover carnivorous plants at the Bog Garden before making your way back to the greenhouse. One of the most beautiful outdoor attractions in Winston-Salem, the 1,100-acre county park is also a terrific destination for fishing, horseback riding, and other soft outdoor adventure. 

Tanglewood hosts spring workshops on select Wednesdays. For a full schedule visit our Historic Gardens page

4201 Clemmons Road • Clemmons, NC 27012 • (336) 703-6400

Pattern Garden View

Stop #5: Paul J. Ciener Botanical Gardens

Located just 15 minutes outside Winston-Salem, Paul J. Ciener Botanical Gardens (PJCBG) offer 15 different gardens to explore, including the Kitchen Garden, an 18th-century-style American Southern Garden with four Moravian Quilt-style raised beds. In addition, PJCBG features more than 20,000 tulip bulbs, making it the largest spring bulb display in the area. Plan your visit to attend any one of the spring gardening workshops or outdoor concert events. Pop into the gift shop on your way out to pick up locally handcrafted birdhouses and seasonal plants to grow at home.

Schedule your spring garden workshop at PJCBG here. 

215 South Main Street • Kernersville, NC 27284 • (336) 996-7888

Bonus Stops: Organic Produce and Farm-Fresh Goods

Garden tours leaving you hungry for farm-fresh produce? Check out this local gem.

Let It Grow Produce is a year-round market that sells locally grown fruits and vegetables, herbs, and other seasonal harvests from nearby farmers and the organization’s own backyard. Owner Becky Zollicoffer helps customers create completely local and fresh meals based on what’s in season. Stop in to stock up on local bone broth, the freshest dairy products, as well as jams, sauces and pickled vegetables.

Enjoy these enchanting (and delicious!) experiences and much more during your next visit to Winston-Salem. View (or download) our Historic Gardens Guide to kick start your spring trip planning.