We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Allen Centennial Gardens

620 Babcock Drive, Madison, WI 53706
608-262-1549
Website
Improve this listing
Ranked #10 of 52 Attractions in Madison
Type: Gardens
Owner description: Located on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, these public gardens serve as outdoor classrooms in the study and research of plant... more » Owner description: Located on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, these public gardens serve as outdoor classrooms in the study and research of plant identification, ecology and site management techniques in horticulture. « less
Write a Review

41 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    31
    7
    3
    0
    0
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
St. Andrews, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
28 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2014

These gardens are right on campus, and they are so lovely. It didn't take too long to walk around, but there were several things to look at. There is no fee to enter either so it is worth a visit.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Madison, Wisconsin
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
10 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2014

This garden is an almost secret pleasure on the Ag campus - a free garden which changes every year but is always a peaceful oasis. A rock garden, herbs, perennials and annuals and a shade garden - amazingly well put together in a relatively small space. One of my favorite spots for photography.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

I agree, obviously I am photographing all of the time and there is so much subject matter in a small space. Right now, in addition to floral scenics, we have so much insect life - many additional faunal subjects! Thanks for the review! More

Dane
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2014

Fifteen minutes or hours. A visit to Allen Centennial Gardens is a refreshing escape in the heart of the UW campus. You are transported to French, English and Japanese gardens, cooking and WI backyard gardens all in this compact wonderland. Guaranteed to get your creativity flowing connecting with nature and beauty instantly. Like a spa visit for your soul.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Thanks for that wonderful review - even with limited labor and funding, a lot of hard work from dedicated volunteers is key to what allows to offer what we do to the best of our abilities! We love it and are glad you do to! More

Scottsdale, Arizona
Top Contributor
289 reviews 289 reviews
137 attraction reviews
171 helpful votes 171 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2014

This garden appears to be a demonstration garden giving local gardeners ideas on various flowers, flora, and garden design. It is very pleasant but small.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Some people see our small size (2.5 acres) as a negative but many love the fact that it is intimate and easy to negotiate - they can leave without thinking they missed large areas. And we pack things in and probably maximize our impact more than most others! Glad you enjoyed your visit! More

Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
14 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

As a gardener and green-thumb wannabe, this garden (managed by five or so horticulture students) is simply amazing. I never seen miniature garden using pea gravels and flagstone slabs. The container veggie garden is also very educational. The plants around the garden looked so healthy even after the long winter we just had. My wife said this is what our... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

I'm so glad you didn't let the parking intimidate you. It is our biggest challenge getting people in to enjoy the Gardens. Everyone, please keep in mind, parking in surface lots and meter parking is only enforced M-F 8:00 am-4:30 pm, and in those times there is a parking ramp across the street. After 4:30 and on weekdns (with the... More

Madison, Wisconsin
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
9 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014 via mobile

I expect I come here once a week because it's close to home. I notice there is something new, flowers are blooming at different times and they rotate annuals according to the season. It's a place of yin and yang, peace and excitement. Here in this small venue is everything you need to ponder the beauty of life.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Peggy, We love our regulars and we work hard to make it the kind of space you describe! We hope you continue to enjoy! More

Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
21 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2014

Beauty and variety. Different types of plants are presented in a delightful garden setting. English, French, botanical and floral settings in a small but delightful garden. There is so much more variety that can be added in a very appealing visit to Madison and it's wonderful campus, Frank Lloyd Wright's First Unitarian and nearby homes.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Thanks for your review. It is comments like yours that inspires a group of very dedicated volunteers to put in countless hours of work so we can offer our "hidden gem" to anyone and everyone absolutely free 365 days a year! And we do it 100% self-funded! More

Madison, Wisconsin
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2014

I visit Allen gardens every Sunday - it's my idea of "going to church" :) The gardens continue to be an inspiration and escape and I look forward to seeing something new whenever I go. You and your staff have turned this into a teaching garden in the best sense of the word - it is part museum, part botanical... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Deb, Your comments are exactly why we do this and are happy to offer the Gardens for free for everyone to enjoy. One of our donors/volunteers/Friends board member Sally Bilder can also often be found in her garden at the front of the house, if you see her stop and say hi. We love our regular visitors! More

Madison, Wisconsin
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

Its a jewel of a garden, with many different types of plants in distinctly different areas, such as the French garden, the English garden, the rock garden, etc. Its not very big, but I always leave happy that I took the time to stop.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Ed L, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

Thanks for the kind comments. We sometimes see our small size (2.5 acres) evaluated as a negative but others love it because they can't visit, see everything and leave without feeling like they missed areas! More

Madison, Wisconsin, United States
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2013

While going through the process of choosing a college to attend, I toured and explored the Madison campus. It wasn't until I lived in a dorm right by the gardens last year that I discovered them. Always beautiful and well cared for, they are the perfect place to spend several hours or even 15 minutes of your time. (I find... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
joedragyn, Manager at Allen Centennial Gardens, responded to this review

We love our "regulars"! Thanks for posting images and for the kind comments. We work very hard to provide this lovely and educational setting with no financial assistance from state or University. 100% of all operational expenditures including salary and benefits are self-funded. So we are pretty proud to offer the site absolutely free every day of the year! More

Travelers who viewed Allen Centennial Gardens also viewed

 

Been to Allen Centennial Gardens? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Allen Centennial Gardens, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.

Manage your listing