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Garfield Park Conservatory | Chicago, IL

  • Attractions
  • East Garfield Park
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garfield park conservatory
Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas for Time Out

Time Out says

Everything you need to know about visiting the Garfield Park Conservatory (300 N Central Park Ave, Chicago IL 60624)

Described as "landscape art under glass" when it opened in 1908, the conservatory, while being one of the largest in the world, also boasts revolutionary architecture. With the building’s haystack shape and walls of stratified stonework, landscape architect Jens Jensen considered the Fern Room in particular, with its “prairie waterfall”—a stone and water element within a glass structure—to be one of his greatest achievements. About 120,000 plants representing some 600 species occupy the conservatory’s two acres and indoor spaces. Twice a year, flower shows premiere to celebrate the beginning of winter and spring.

Plan your visit

The Garfield Park Conservatory is free, but timed reservations are required and there is an opportunity to make a donation when you book or arrive. Once inside, you'll be able to walk through various rooms that showcase specific plant types. The Desert House is filled with prickly succulents and cacti, the Fern Room is jam-packed with lush ferns and the Aroid House is home to popular houseplants. Come summer, the outdoor gardens, which amount to a whopping 12 acres of land, offer a total sensory experience that will transport you somewhere else—if only for the day.

Dig deeper

Beyond a routine visit, plant enthusiasts are encouraged to come back for family programming, adult programs, exhibits and installations plants sales and more. The conservatory offers beekeeping demonstrations, composting workshops, a demonstration garden and yoga.

Our Chicago editorial team is constantly updating and reviewing the best attractions, activities and venues across the city, so that you're always in the know, with the best of Chicago at your fingertips. Chicago was most recently updated with new tips on October 4, 2023.


300 N Central Park Ave
Cross street:
at Fulton Blvd
El stop: Green to Conservatory/Central Park Drive. Bus: 20, 52, 82.
Opening hours:
Mon, Tue 9am–5pm; Wed 9am–8pm; Thu–Sun 9am–5pm.
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What’s on

Garfield Park Conservatory Spring Flower Show: Bee's Knees

Winter is almost over and the Garfield Park Conservatory is here to usher in warmer days with its Spring Flower Show. Make a reservation to explore this year's show, "What's in a Name?" which explains the history and science of botanical nomenclature. You'll find spring bulbs like Tulipa ‘Rococo’, Lilium ‘Josephine,’ Viola ‘Matrix Yellow’ and Anemone ‘Giant Blue Poppy.’ The show only sticks around through Mother's Day weekend, so book your visit soon!

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