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Finnerty Gardens

Finnerty Gardens contain one of Canada's best collections of rhododendrons which features more than 200 species of rhododendron, some reaching over six feet in height.

The gardens are located on-campus. They encompass an area north of Cedar Hill Cross Road and west of Henderson Road. The entrance to the gardens is near the Multifaith Centre, on the south-west edge of the campus.

Visit Finnerty Gardens in April and May to see the rhododendrons at their best. The gardens are free and open to the public year-round.



The gardens were developed in 1974 when the estate of Mrs. Jeanne Buchanan Simpson was left to the University of Victoria (UVic). She and her husband George built up a notable collection of rhododendron species at their Lake Cowichan home. Theirs was the largest collection in British Columbia.

In 1988, soil conditions required the rhododendrons be moved to their current location. The three-month long move was a joint undertaking by Anthony James, curator of the university gardens, and Dr. Herman Vaartnou, a valuable member of the Garden Friends.

In this new location the plants are still thriving to this day. The gardens are tended by the Finnerty Garden Friends, a group of UVic alumni and community members.