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Better Homes and Gardens Test Garden

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Address: 1716 Locust Street, Des Moines, IA 50309, Des Moines, IA 50309
Phone Number: 515-284-3994
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Description: Right in the heart of the city is a half-block long blaze of beauty...
Right in the heart of the city is a half-block long blaze of beauty - Better Homes and Gardens' testing ground for various landscape designs that the company documents and photographs. The area is one large area made of many mini-backyards, complete with annuals, perennials, bulbs and typical backyard structures like fences and gates.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 6
    Very good
  • 2
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Pretty gardens.

Enjoyed our visit in the gardens. They have everything labeled but if you walk on the grass to read the labels a rude person may tell you to stay off of the grass. They should... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed August 26, 2015
Bootsy2
,
Texas
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24 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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English first
Texas
Level Contributor
27 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2015 NEW

Enjoyed our visit in the gardens. They have everything labeled but if you walk on the grass to read the labels a rude person may tell you to stay off of the grass. They should have signs to warn you.

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Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2015

It's like stepping into a cover of one of the Better Homes and Garden's publications. The tours are excellent. I forgot I was on the edge of downtown as the garden's are enclosed. The traffic is muffled by the landscaping and pond. Excellent place to sit down and eat a picnic lunch (table at center by fountain).

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RHODE ISLAND
Level Contributor
1,211 reviews
285 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 215 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2015

this was a wonderful garden to walk along. my wife is a master gardener and she liked it a lot. located in downtown Des Moines,Iowa. Check to make sure it is open as it is iffy. However if you call them you can get there in no time and it worth the trip. If you like gardens this one is... More 

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Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2015

It is well worth it to figure out WHICH Friday, and figure out where the entrance is (in the center of the south wall). Within this small walled compound is a beautifully designed garden with helpful staff who are happy to engage the novice or advanced gardener. Bring your lunch and enjoy!!

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Decorah, Iowa
Level Contributor
124 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2015

The Better Homes and Gardens Test Gardens in Des Moines are a HIDDEN GEM in a city!! The Test Gardens are only open to the general public from noon to 2 on Friday afternoons. The Gardens are exceptional with plenty of staff and interns to answer any questions that you may have on the plants and flowers. The end of... More 

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Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
695 reviews
490 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 242 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2015

You can walk here on Friday afternoon's and enjoy the well maintained garden or even take pictures. People of all ages come here. I recommend especially when the Art Festival is open nearby.

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vernon NY
Level Contributor
44 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2014

There is a very small window of time every week to actually see this attraction but it's worth it if you enjoy exceptional gardening and unique flora. Great place to sit and eat your lunch, hard to believe it sits in the middle of downtown.

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Wichita, Kansas
Level Contributor
128 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2014

We attended Better Homes and Gardens Cooking Experience dinner. This inaugural event, paired with an all day series of cooking classes was a delight. The hospitality was top notch and service excellent. The wine pairings with our dinner were delicious. It was truly an honor to be part of this special event and hope to have future chances to be... More 

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Metropolitan Philadelphia, PA
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2014

This garden is nice but not exceptional. It is open to the public only 2 hours a week from noon to 2 pm on Fridays. Plants are well labeled but the garden is challenging to find, especially since a security officer in an adjacent magazine building sent me in the wrong direction. I'm glad I visited because if I missed... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 5
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
74 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2014

My brother, sister and I visited the gardens. They are more "plant people" than I am, so they did have questions and they said the people there answered them knowledgeably and so they could understand what was being said. I was just there to look at the pretty flowers and plants. It is set up with winding pathways. One problem... More 

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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?