Beauty to behold at Reiman Gardens

AMES — Roy and Bobbi Reiman are longtime supporters of Iowa State University, and their gifts in 1995 allowed the university to move its horticulture gardens to its present site and to establish and endowment to expand and make dramatic changes through the years.

The year-round attraction known as Reiman Gardens now features distinct gardens both indoors and outdoors on its 17-acre campus, a conservatory with seasonal displays, a 2,500-square-foot Butterfly Wing with emergence cases, a Gift Shop, and beauty for all to enjoy and share.

Communications Coordinator Maria Tepley said although it is associated with Iowa State University, the gardens are open daily to the public as well as for rentals for special occasions.

“We are open daily year round and are extremely popular for rentals and educational tours,” Tepley said. “Our summer hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and our winter hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.”

Tepley said every year a new theme is picked for the gardens and the 2018 theme is Movement.

“The gardens are changed each year to fit the theme and even some things in the gift shop are changed to match the theme. Each year a special sculpture exhibit is brought in with this year’s 13-piecee exhibit being called “Wind, Waves and Light,” she added.

The kinetic sculpture exhibit was made by George Sherwood and is designed to explore space, time and the relationships of objects in motion. They are made of stainless steel and the reflective qualities integrate each sculpture into its environment. Wind speed and direction, shades of light and precipitation all transform the qualities of light and movement of this show.

Tepley said the entire Reiman Gardens are divided into many areas — each having its own special features. Popular areas include the rose garden, the hillside water-wise gardens, the town and country garden, the children’s garden and Lake Helen.

Reiman Gardens is a year-round destination where visitors can experience and explore a large variety of plants, aromatic herbs, beautiful roses, towering palm trees, native grass species and much more. Tips for gardening are available or just enjoy unique art and architecture. Take in a tour, a class or one of the special events offered throughout the year and see the changing displays in the conservatory. More than 800 exotic butterflies are in flight in the 2.500 square foot butterfly wing, and the gift shop has something for everyone.

For a complete listing of the events and educational programs go to www.reimangardens.com/events or call 515-294-2710.