Travel (U.S. and International)

The Horticultural Society plans day trips to regional gardens of interest, as well as extended trips to gardens within the USA and  internationally.

U.S. Trips for 2015

  • Michigan – August 4-5, 2015- details below
  • California – April 6-11, 2015 – details below

International Trip: 2016- to be announced.

IMA Horticultural Society logo

Gardens of Grand Rapids & Ann Arbor, Michigan with the Indianapolis Museum of Art Horticultural Society

August 4-5, 2015        For trip brochure, click here. All details are below as well.

Meijer Gardens

Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park


• Visit Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids,  – one of the nation’s most significant sculpture and botanic experiences

• Tour Old House Gardens, Ann Arbor – America’s expert source for heirloom flower bulbs

• Tour Lake Cliff Gardens, St. Joseph,Mich. – a five-acre botanical wonder located on a dramatic cliff overlooking Lake Michigan

• See the display gardens at the University of Michigan’s Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor

Visit MSU Extension Grand Ideas Garden, East Lansing,  an education garden featuring thousands of plants with distinctive qualities for the home gardener

• Lunch at Zingerman’s Deli – an Ann Arbor institution

 Trip Details:

The IMA Horticultural Society invites you to join fellow Horticultural Society member and tour organizer, Ann Hathaway, and Mark Zelonis, the IMA’ Deputy Director of Environmental & Historic Preservation, for a delightful two-day trip to view some of Michigan’s beautiful gardens.


Tuesday August 4th   

Meet at the Indianapolis Museum of Art on Tuesday, August 4, and depart at 8 a.m, by deluxe motorcoach for Ann Arbor. Stop for lunch at Zingerman’s Deli, an Ann Arbor institution that serves delicious sandwiches, and also stocks an array of farmhouse cheeses, estate-bottled olive oils, varietal vinegars, smoked fish, salami, coffee, tea and much, much more.

We will then visit nearby Old House Gardens, a great source for heirloom flower bulbs. With a mission to save rare bulbs from extinction, the company searches the world for old bulbs that are at risk, researches their history, then uses their own micro-farms and small farmers to grow them. Owner Scott Kunst will lead a tour of his company’s buildings and one or two of the gardens where only heirloom bulbs are grown.

Continue to the University of Michigan’s Matthaei Botanical Gardens and view some of the many display gardens such as the Gaffield Children’s Garden, Bonsai & Penjing Garden, and Great Lakes Gardens. Afterward, head for Grand Rapids and enjoy a group dinner at Mangiamo! restaurant, which is housed in the beautiful 19th-century Wurzburg mansion.  Then check into the Country Inn & Suites for one night (details below).


Wednesday August 5th

After breakfast in the hotel on Wednesday morning depart for the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, which integrates the experience of striking gardens with fine art. The emphasis here is on horticultural displays showcasing a beautiful array of plants appropriate for the Midwest and  specialized plants from regions around the world. Presentation ranges from planned and manicured to natural and native, mingled with a collection of more than 200 sculptures. Opening this year is the new Richard & Helen DeVos Japanese Garden, an eight-acre garden that offers tranquility, simplicity and beauty. While at the gardens grab a bite to eat on your own at Taste of the Gardens Café, which has a dazzling glass ceiling sculpture by Dale Chihuly.

Lake Cliff Gardens

Lake Cliff Gardens

Visit the nearby MSU Extension Grand Ideas Garden, an education garden with exhibits of current garden trends such as a waterfall garden, rain gardens and pollinator gardens. The last stop is at Lake Cliff Gardens, a five-acre botanical wonder located on a dramatic cliff overlooking Lake Michigan. A series of gardens feature tropical plants from all over the world, along with outstanding exotic specimens of trees, shrubs and perennials. As you tour the private estate it becomes immediately clear that both an artist’s eye and passionate spirit were essential for creating this magical place. The integrated sculptures were designed by owners Barbara and Ron Weirich. After touring the Lake Cliff Gardens, head back to Indianapolis for an evening arrival.

Country Inn & Suites by CarlsonSM, Grand Rapids EastA recipient of TripAdvisor’s 2014 Certificate of Excellence, the hotel features stylish rooms and a location that offers easy access to the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. Highlights: in-room coffeemaker with complimentary coffee, refrigerator and microwave • complimentary high-speed Internet access, complimentary breakfast buffet • fitness center • heated indoor pool.



Motorcoach transportation, 1 night accommodation with hotel baggage handling, 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner, all entrance/tour fees for gardens.


$449 per person double occupancy; $509 single occupancy     Open to Horticultural Society Members only.  Click here for membership information.

Payment deadline is June 26.


Please fill out the registration form below and return it to Ann. Space is limited, so please respond promptly. Any questions, please call Ann at (317) 575-8005, or Mark at (317) 920-2673.


Please print:

NAME(S): _______________________________________________________

SHARING ROOM WITH:____________________________________________


CITY, STATE: ZIP:_______________________________________________

PHONE: (______________________ ) CELL: (________________________ )

EMERGENCY CONTACT: ________________________________________________________________

EMAIL ADDRESS: ________________________________________________

SPECIAL DIETARY NEEDS:_________________________________________

Return with full payment, payable to IMA Horticultural Society, by Friday, June 26 to: Ann Hathaway, 5947 Heaton Pass, Carmel, IN 46033-8629.


Next International Trip-Now Planning! 

2016 International Trip: Ideas are being gathered now!  E-mail Mark Zelonis,  Ruth Lilly Deputy Director of Environmental & Historic Preservation, with your suggestions.

Past U.S. and International Tours:

April 6-11, 2015     Gardens of Southern California

California trip pic

Save the dates! The IMA Horticultural Society is off to California next spring for a visit to the Pasadena/Los Angeles area an all the great horticultural an artistic marvels that region has to offer. Not only will we see some of the very famous attractions, such of the Huntington Botanical Gardens, pictures above, but also a number of more intimate private garden spaces an the area’s best museums.

Gardens on our itinerary include:  Huntington Library, Art Collection and Botanical Gardens, Lotusland, Casa del Herrero, Descanso Gardens, Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, and the Los Angeles County Arboretum.

Museums include: Norton-Simon Museum and Sculpture Garden; and The Getty Center.

A deposit of $350 (single or double occupancy) is due December 15, 2014. Final payment is due on or before January 2, 2015.

Double occupancy cost: $2,739 per person ; Single occupancy cost: $3,109

Cost includes direct air (Delta) from Indianapolis, home pickup/return Indy in the metro area, five (5) nights at Hilton Garden Inn, Arcadia California; baggage handling; private tour transportation; admission fees; five (5) breakfasts, two (2) lunches, four (4) dinners; all taxes and gratuities.

Scotland: The South and the Borders – July 2014

By Mark Zelonis, Ruth Lilly Deputy Director of Environmental & Historic PreservationScotland photo

Little Sparta garden captures the essence of the Scottish countryside.

Horticultural Society members travelled to central and southeastern parts of Scotland, visiting art galleries, important architectural monuments, sculpture parks, and, of course, gardens in July. Led by Mark Zelonis, the IMA’s Deputy Director of Environmental & Historic Preservation, the tour was expertly organized by Frances Roxburgh of London-based Specialtours.

The third such overseas excursion for the society, this itinerary included magnificent homes, such as Ardgowan, Dumfries House, Mellerstain, Traquair and Balcarres. Art was enjoyed in Glasgow at the Hunterian Gallery and the Burrell Collection, and in Edinburgh at the National Gallery of Scotland.

Some of the world’s best contemporary art was witnessed at Ian Hamilton Finlay’s Little Sparta, Jupiter Artland art festival, and the mind-boggling Garden of Cosmic Speculation of Charles Jencks.

And the group relished private visits to some of the country’s most magnificent gardens: Drumlandrig, Dawyck Botanic Garden, Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, Kailzie Gardens, Tyninghame and the jaw-dropping rose garden of Carolside.

Scotland’s beautiful sheep-dotted countryside and delicious meals also helped make this a memorable journey for all.

June, 2013  Wisconsin:

Anderson Gardens, Rockford, Ill., is considered one of the best Japanese Gardens in the United States. The IMA Horticultural Society will be visiting this and other gardens in the area in June. Photo courtesy Anderson Gardens, Rockford, Ill.

Highlights included such attractions as Olbrich Botanical Gardens, Mitchell Park Conservatory, Allen Centennial Garden, Boerner Botanical Garden and the Anderson Japanese Gardens.  We viewed the opening of the spectacular “wings” of the Milwaukee Art Museum, and took in a sculpture park nearby. We’ll also visited several special private gardens near Madison and stopped for plant shopping on the way home.

May, 2012    Gardens of Northern Italy

By Mark Zelonis, The Ruth Lilly Deputy Director of Environmental & Historic Preservation

no. italy a morguefile000431454657Fourteen members of the IMA Horticultural Society ventured to one of the most beautiful areas of northern Italy in May 2012, visiting Renaissance, Baroque and contemporary gardens on the shores of Lakes Maggiore and Como, as well as in the historic towns of Verona, Vicenza and Padua. Towering rhododendrons bloomed beside palm trees, with the snow-capped Alps and azure lakes forming a gorgeous backdrop. Colorful and fragrant anemones, poppies, iris and roses were at their peak of bloom, competing with strutting peacocks for most colorful display.

Magnificent villas along lakeshores and out in the country afforded the group glimpses of extraordinary wealth, history and art. The fabulous work of architect, Andrea Palladio, was evident at his Villa La Rotonda, the fascinating Teatro Olimpico, and at numerous churches.

Finally, water taxis brought the group of travelers to the magical city of Venice, where countless works of Venetian art were enjoyed at the Accademia, the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore and on the island of Torcello. A very special highlight was a private evening showing of St. Mark’s Basilica and its astounding mosaics.

In addition, eight of the travelers stayed on for an optional extension to Florence, Sienna and Lucca. Tour planner, Susie Orso, of SpecialTours and the Ultimate Travel Company, was an excellent hostess and guide. She provided fabulous meals and other special treats for the group. A special presentation about this trip will be March 10, 2013 at the IMA’s Toby, with refreshments following in the Garden Terrace. Stay tuned for that, and for the next overseas adventure.


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