After spending our first day touring Victoria, it was time to head away from the city to get back into nature–even if it was staged nature. I have an appreciation with flowers. Growing up, I helped my mom pick out her yearly flowers to plant in the flowerbed in front of our house. My front yard was filled with a vegetable garden that my grandfather would spend hours on in his retired years sitting outside and watching it grow. I even went as far as requesting my own “private” garden. My dad and brother dug a small 8′ by 8′ square section to plant sunflowers that were my own.
Getting to Butchart Gardens was a task since we did not have a car. After deciding biking to the gardens was out of the question, we hopped on a bus full of other tourists flocking to see the summer flowers. The bus drivers were informative throughout the drive. I unfortunately ended up sleeping most of the trip to avoid motion sickness. Booking the tour was very convenient. After talking to the Visitor Centre, we booked tickets the night before. Knowing we could decide when to go and jump on any of the buses heading to the gardens even though we had already decided to catch the first bus in the morning. Once at the gardens, we were free to explore all day if wanted and depart on any of the returning buses. Included in the bus ticket price was our admission tickets, so it was a one step easy process.
The Butcharts’ were in the cement industry and headed to Vancouver Island to expand their business. Once the limestone was removed, the quarry was turned into its present state with the help of a Japanese garden influence. The Sunken Garden was completed in 1921 with a rose garden added to the grounds. To this day, the gardens are still owned by Butchart descendants.
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