This theme garden is where it all started for Parc Marie-Victorin. When the park first opened in 1985, the garden was the whole site! Implemented next to the river, with breathtaking views on exquisite waterfalls, it features wilder shadowy landscapes.
A belvedere and beautiful trees donated by the Montreal Botanical Garden adorn this garden with unique intimacy. Did you know that the belvedere was built on the foundations of an old mill?
This garden was designed to be a birds’ heaven. Fruit trees, flowers prized by hummingbirds and butterflies, nesting areas, grasses or thistles whose leaves make great pools! You can watch 157 bird species thought out the year, since the garden lies on the Nicolet river migration corridor. In fact, our feathered guests can take advantage of the white admiral butterfly mosaic, for it represents an excellent food source for them.
All around this pond—a genuine natural buffer—is where wildlife and plants meet. Shoreline plants, collection of lilies, primroses, papyrus, and big willow trees surround this unique environment. Wetlands are the home of many insects. That is why you will see here giant sculptures of insects made of recycled metal. It is also the habitat of the snapping turtle, which is often seen laying its eggs in the flower beds!
This is the newest addition to the garden, designed according to a giant leaflet. Here you will find a popular attraction, the mosaicultures. These sizeable, three-dimensional structures relate the many exploratory journeys made by Brother Marie-Victorin. The representation of Marie-Victorin stands 6 metres tall and uses more than 13 400 plants meticulously planted every year. In the centre of the garden, the Fontaine of Time illustrates the major events in the life of Conrad Kirouac, better known as Brother Marie-Victorin.
As you stroll along, you will come across new and rare cultivars, as well as unknown or underutilized species for our zone 4 climate. Among others, a fine collection of unusual conifers that vary in colour and form, a collection of miniaturized trees, and an impressive colourful rectilinear pond enjoyed by photographers. One will also discover various species of peonies, insect-eating and acid-loving plants, and even plants native from Japan, China and South Africa!
Our health garden is a delight for all senses! Its design is a tribute to biodiversity and companion planting. You will find an assortment of heirloom vegetables, aromatic and medicinal plants. Did you ever hear about strawberry spinach? Here you will discover varieties of tomatoes, herbs and other hidden treasures. Maybe you will meet Marie-Capucine. She will gladly invite you to taste edible flowers, vegetables and fresh herbal teas. Enjoy the wonders of our garden!
You can always visit the gardens on your own. Also, to learn more about its history and horticulture, a bilingual audio guide or a paper guide is available, allowing you to wander around at your own pace. No matter what time of the day you arrive, you will discover the many wonders that nature has to offer. Our tour consists of 45 sites well worth seeing! In fact, the paper guide makes a greate memory to bring back home.
Around a bend in the path, you may meet Céline, Eugene, Josephine or Marie-Capucine. Feeling their passion will allow you to discover a world long gone. At our new General Store, you will immerse yourself in the time of Marie-Victorin. At the laboratory, you will learn about his life, and the healthy garden reveals its richness. Who knows? You may get lucky and be greeted by Brother Marie-Victorin himself! Will you be bold enough to taste edible flowers? Our garden is blooming with multiple life forms, so… Come and enjoy our passion!
This pavilion holds an exhibition entitled “Life in the time of Marie-Victorin”. Visit our antique exhibition and immerse yourself in a time when ingenuity was of essence. Eugene and Josephine will greet you and share stories about these forgotten objects—from the private collection of Mr. Alain Lemaire, cofounder of Cascade. Treat yourself to some candies, herbal teas, quilts or regional delicacies.
A peaceful haven with an exotic atmosphere! This relaxing tropical greenhouse offers you an energizing break. Come and discover the many plants and fruit trees from Southern and Central America. Interpretive panels will allow you to learn more about Marie-Victorin’s expeditions to Cuba as well as his vision about the Cuban flora. Explore Cuba without taking the plane!
Make the most of your visit to the gardens and discover our educational laboratory. Demonstrations, herbariums, an exhibition about the life of Marie-Victorin, a temporary one on bees and one of the Mingan Island. On certain days you may meet Céline. She will gladly tell you more about the life of this famous Brother, plus, you will learn about the surprising virtues of certain “weeds”. Do you know that plantain and dandelions have healing powers?
A footbridge, unique in North America, invites you to beautiful strolls across the Nicolet River. Donated by Cascades, this bridge gives access to the municipal park; there you will find a water playground for children. Made from recycled material and illuminated at night, this impressive structure provides a passage on foot and meeting place.
Take advantage of your visit to the Garden to visit this multinational company. After a short multimedia presentation, you will have the opportunity to take a guided tour of a plant in full operation. A shuttle from the Parc Marie-Victorin is offer. This option costs $7 and allows you to have a peek at how daily products are made. Also, you can see the Alain-Lemaire Solar Park.
During your visit in our park, why not pair this with a visit of Cascades plant in order to discover the manufacturing process of toilet paper. Furthermore, this visit will enable you to have the chance to see a unique solar park. This park, built in 2014, captivates the energy of the sun in order to reduce the consumption of natural gas used to produce the hot water required for the operations at the Kingsey Falls industrial complex. It occupies a surface area of 1 490 m2. It is considered innovative for multiple reasons since it’s the first installation to use parabolic concentration solar panels with sensors situated on the ground and it’s a first of the pulp and paper industry.