Legacy Gardens

Read how you can help through a donation to help establish and develop the Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society Legacy Ornamental Garden. Click here: Donation information

Click Donate Now to help build the Gardens
Donate Now Through CanadaHelps.org!


Oct. 26, 2022

Prep for 2023

Cactus dahlia tubers dug up today at Legacy Garden sit washed and drying before storage in peat moss or sawdust in a coolish, dark place for the winter. A dozen tubers should become about two dozen when they come out of storage in late March, split where the nodes have appeared and potted to sprout. They’ll be planted back at Legacy in June and flowering with 6-inch blooms July to frost

Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society members, and other local gardeners, plant extra flower seeds and recycle tubers and bulbs for Legacy when they start indoors planting for later transplants into their own gardens.

If you want to be involved with plant contributions, or planting and maintenance at Legacy or at Henderson Lake garden near the tennis court which Society members also maintain, email Judy Matlock, judy.matlock@shaw.ca.

October 8, 2022

Legacy Garden on Thanksgiving weekend continues to provide pleasure for visitors. As one Friday said, “It’s a real treasure.”

Friday marked the wind-down of the garden’s fourth season, as the city turned off water to the water feature and cleared lines.

As well, volunteer Russ Wilton gives grass in the Rose Garden a final cut before winter.



















September 30, 2022

legacy garden news release – Legacy Garden a product of dedicated donors, volunteers

May 23, 2022

Grant for drip irrigation system

Caitlin Gajdostik, left, presents a plaque May 20 signifying the Community Foundation of Lethbridge and Southwestern Alberta’s $8,000 grant to the Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society to Rick Ross, centre, Society president. in the Legacy Garden rose garden. Paul Stevenson, right, vice-president of the society and holding the cheque, has been one of the driving forces behind development of the garden.

The presentation took place in the Legacy Garden Rose Garden, established through donations by local and district residents.

The grant will be used to install a drip irrigation system in the garden, fulfilling a principle of water conservation set when the ornamental garden was established in 2018 as part of the city’s legacy Regional Park, in partnership with the City of Lethbridge.

The Foundation has also provided grants toward installation of a water feature, the garden’s centre piece, and fence around the rose garden to deter deer.


May 23, 2022

Signage acknowledging donors to the Legacy Gardens at 13th Street N. and Blackwolf Blvd. was installed this week by a dedicated volunteer crew of five persons. The donor board was designed by Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society board member Linda Richards as a stylized tree with leaves noting each donor who has contributed more than $50 since 2018 to development of the ornamental garden, part of the Legacy Regional Park. Donations can be made through this website by clicking on the Donate Now button above.


June 25, 2021

Legacy Garden is in mid-seen form, thanks to the efforts of the Legacy Garden  committee and Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society volunteers. New beds have been added and the ones which have had a season or three to get established are showing what nature and some TLC can achieve.


Feb. 25, 2021

Zoom meeting recording of Monday, Feb. 22 Hort. Society meeting featuring Paul Stevenson’s presentation on Legacy Gardens.



2020 Report for Legacy Ornamental Garden

This year there was a lot happening at the garden.  We added well over $3,000 worth of trees, shrubs, perennials and native plants, as well as some that were donated.  

A new triangular entrance bed was developed near the north gate and the city is making a welcome sign to add to it.        

Further planting was done on the water feature hill and hopefully in subsequent years it will green up the hill significantly. Most of the plantings on the south side of the hill by the patio are native plants.   

A small bed was started with shrubs just east of the patio and will be extended with perennials over time.

The ‘rocky knoll’ to the west of the rose garden has native plants on the north side, which will soon be marked with a sign.  This area will be used to show gardeners some native plants that may be used in their home gardens.  The south side is covered with sedum of all kinds as it is hot and dry.

After the deer fence was installed last winter, more rose beds were developed, and thanks to donations more roses were planted in memory of loved ones.  Another corner bed was also put in with some ‘deer candy’ plants that may also be in danger of getting eaten.  There will be signs put on the gates next year, but we do want visitors to PLEASE COME IN and visit.  There is also a beautiful cedar bench with arbour installed so visitors can relax while enjoying the roses.

The west ‘heritage’ bed was the first bed started in the garden and is mostly donated plants from gardens around the area.  It has now had a bit of time to get established.  This year the Delphinium took the show and many visitors were taking pictures of it or asking what perennial it was. 

More Delphiniums have now been added as well as a few more plants on the south end, so this bed is slowly filling out.

The biggest project we had done this year was the rock garden.  We were able to have it installed by the Southern Alberta Rock Gardens & Landscaping Ltd. thanks to a very generous donation from Len and Elizabeth Hale, members of the Horticultural Society.   The rock garden has a small walled patio with an arbour.  We will be planting more rock garden plants in the coming years.  

The round bed was planted up with all annuals last year, but this year we decided to add some perennials for structure.  Since they have had a year to get rooted, we are hoping that next year they will put on a better show.  Of course the annuals that are added in will bloom for the whole summer.

In various areas of the garden, including the south edge and south west corner, we have planted trees and some large lilacs, which are deer resistant shrubs.  When they get bigger, hopefully they will block a bit of wind and provide some shade for the benches on that side of the garden.  Unfortunately, some of the small fruit trees and mountain ash trees that were donated were demolished by the deer.  We are still hoping they will come back this spring. 

Plans are now underway for a few new things for 2021.  We are going to add some small annual beds at the north entrance as well as starting to develop one or more of the remaining beds.  We will keep adding plantings to all the areas that we have started as well as getting our ‘Friends of the Garden’ appreciation sign installed.  

Our volunteers put in 1119 hours of labour into both the Henderson gardens and the Legacy garden this year.  As no one was travelling, it was probably a good way to get outside and help with the projects.  We do very much appreciate all the help.  We couldn’t have done as much as we did, without them.

Our thanks to all who have donated their time and/or money to help this project continue. 

February 18, 2020

Legacy Garden plans for 2020 (archived)

 Most of the deer fencing has been completed around the Rose Garden and we hope to plant some vines and small flower beds beside it this year, to soften the effect.

 If anyone has an interest in dedicating a rose to a loved one, you can go to Canada Helps (Donate Now) above and for a donation of $200, have your rose marked with their name. We also include the name of the rose on the tag.
 Come and visit our Rose Garden (inside the deer fence) and see how many different roses we have planted. We hope to eventually add some benches for people to sit and relax on.

   Please consider donating some of your plant divisions to the Legacy Garden this year. We are especially looking for alpine and rock garden plants, some native plants and sedum.

 If anyone would be willing to start some annuals for us, please let one of us (Legacy Committee) know and we can get you the seeds.

 If you would like to volunteer to help with the planting and your name isn’t already on our list, please call someone on the Legacy Planning Committee (see below) and we will send out emails when planting sessions are planned.A year end report to the City Parks Department outlining our contributions, including money spent and volunteer hours involved, will be used to show the Lethbridge City Council our involvement for the past year on this project.

    Plans for the upcoming year include the building of a rock garden, the cost of which was donated by Elizabeth and Len Hale, which we hope will be planted with the help of plant donations from our members, as well as some which will be have to be purchased.

Legacy rose garden

The deer fencing around the memorial rose bed, which will be paid for with a grant we received from the Community Foundation of Southwestern Alberta, is scheduled to be erected as soon as weather allows. Plans are to soften the ef- fect of this fencing with vines and flowers around some of the edges, as well as making the inside a welcoming place to come into and wander around, or just sit and relax, while enjoying the roses.

The round bed will be planted up in the spring with a mixture of perennials and annuals. We also plan to plant some trees and vines behind and around the pergolas, as well as continue our planting on the areas already started.

As you can see, we have a lot to accomplish and need as much help as possible from volunteers and with donations of certain types of plants. If you can help by putting in a few hours of volunteer labour, have some plants to donate that suit the specific beds, or would like to join our committee, please call someone from the Legacy committee (see below). Our thanks to those who have already volunteered their time to this project, and also for the plants donated

Legacy Ornamental Garden Planting

We are finally putting plants in the ground at Legacy Ornamental Garden.  Our history will record May 14, 2019 as the day the first perennials went in the west bed (that we are calling the legacy bed because it will be filled with old fashioned heritage type perennials.)

The large round bed is also now planted.  The annuals used this year were grown by some our members and donated by Green Haven.  Thanks to a few dedicated volunteers, this first planting is now complete.  Some calm and sunny days are now on order.

Our water feature has been installed! With our main attraction up and running, we have now begun our planting. Planting days are planned before the Garden’s grand opening Aug. 6 and beyond.

if you want to add your name to the volunteer list, please call Judy Matlock at 403-329-3920 or Penny Dodd at 403-308-1217. They will notify you when work days are planned. Wouldn’t it feel good to be able to say you played a part in the development of this brand new garden? 

Plant donations are still welcome. If you have divided some plants and don’t want to throw them away, we will come and get them. We are hoping to plant mostly deer resistant and easy to maintain plants. 

Phone Penny Dodd 403-308-1217 or Judy Matlock 403-329-3920. 

Our Memorial Rose bed will be started next, with thanks to those people that have already donated $200 for roses in memory of a loved one. If you want your donation to go for a memorial rose, please let Cathy Littler (403-359-3093) or Paul Stevenson (403-327-4103) know the details. 

October 20, 2018 (archive)

First planting in Legacy Garden

 Judy Matlock plants an ornamental kale she has been waiting all summer to get into the bed at Legacy Garden. Judy has been weeding in the circular bed in the centre of the Garden, a project of the Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society, in partnership wit the City of Lethbridge. Friday, Paul Stevenson, shown with Judy in the left photo, and Richard Burke pitched in to weed some more, add a bit of compost and get the first plants into the ground – the kale, which will show for as long as the weather allows, and some tulips, which you can watch for next spring. We’ll add more soon.

The project has been delayed by completion of the overall Legacy Park and the weather. A water feature scheduled for installation in late September/early October but postponed by snow,  awaits Spring 2019’s arrival. Over the winter, the committee shepherding the project will plan for considerably more planting in 2019, including an alpine rock garden around the water feature, and planting boxes and information boards in the pergola area.

LEGACY GARDEN UPDATE, Feb. 22, 2018: (Archived)

Plants for the Legacy Garden

Ken Richards

Planning for the Legacy Regional Park continues with the Lethbridge Horticultural Society being responsible for planting and maintenance of plants (perennials and annuals) to be placed into the northwest corner of the Park. We anticipate full access to the Ornamental Garden area sometime this coming spring (exact date not yet known). The walking trails, eight garden areas (beds), the raised hill for a water feature and a number of trees and shrubs are already in place.

The beds vary in size from 53m2 up to 744 m2, so we have lots of room for a diversity of plants to grow. And there is no expectation the Society needs to fill all the beds this coming spring with the planting to take place over the next two to three or more years.

Part of the exciting discussion is what to plant into each of the eight beds so that the floral mixtures are appealing, distinct and educational. Some suggestions already exist include planting alpine or sub-alpine plants (including ferns, mosses or sedums) around the water feature, a diversity of grass species common to Western Canada, fragrant flowers, an edible/herb mixture, local heritage or immigrant plants, plants appealing to children or pollinator friendly plants. Nothing is committed as yet, but active planning is taking place.

We are seeking Society members input for suggestions. We would especially like to hear what you might suggest for planting into beds, seeds you might have available which could be grown for transplanting into the beds, and what perennials you might donate to the Garden areas. First, we would like to learn what is available from Society members and then plan the various beds with appropriate care and not in a haphazard manner. The Society has also set aside some funds for purchase of selected plants.

Please contact Penny Dodd (p.dodd@telus.net; 403 380 3809), Judy Matlock (jamatlock52@gmail.com; 403 329 3920) or Ken Richards (richardsken@hotmail.com; 403 394 4123) with your suggestions.

Volunteer Coordinator for Legacy Garden

The Executive of the Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society is seeking a Volunteer Coordinator for the Legacy Garden. The duties would include compiling and keeping a list of volunteers who may assist with planting and maintenance activities associated with the Legacy Ornamental Garden and to inform volunteers when their services would be required. Please contact President, Penny Dodd (p.dodd@telus.net; 403 380 3809) or Secretary, Judy Matlock (jamatlock52@gmail.com; 403 329 3920), if you are interested.

The garden foundation completed in the Fall 2017 follows the design based on Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society principles.

Community Foundation Grant Approved

By Penny Dodd

December 2017

The Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society has great news about Legacy Ornamental Garden in the new Legacy Regional Park at 13th Street and 40th Avenue N.  We applied for a $12,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Lethbridge and Southwestern Alberta, and we have been awarded the full amount.  The water feature in the ornamental garden is closer to becoming a reality.  What a great Christmas present to us.

Our Legacy Park committee is inspired by this gift, and is hard at work finding ways to promote the park and to raise needed funds.  The items in the attached file make up part of a folder being given to prospective donors to the garden.

The Hort Society board wants all our members to stay informed about developments on Legacy Park, and to encourage everyone to contribute to this legacy project.  Throughout the winter, there will be opportunity to help at some of the public events being planned.  In the spring, we will canvas you for specific perennials and annuals for some of the flowerbeds.

Another way you can help is with a financial contribution.  If you would like to make a monetary donation toward the garden, anything over $20 qualifies for a 2017 tax receipt if it is received before the end of the year.  If you miss 2017, you can always donate in a future year and get a tax receipt. Any amount is gratefully accepted.  You can donate online, by clicking the Donate Now button at the top of this page. If you prefer, cheques (made out to Lethbridge and District Horticultural Society) can be sent to PO Box 11, Lethbridge, T1J 3Y3.

We are excited with all these developments, and hope you share our enthusiasm.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

2 thoughts on “Legacy Gardens

  1. Hello I was very impressed with the work you guys did in the Legacy gardens. Visited yesterday for the first time. I love the Rose memorial garden.
    Peter van der Heide

    • We have a small group of very dedicated volunteers. This year, we are planning to instal drip irrigation, starting with the rose garden. Some of will be starting seeds soon for plants to put in the garden. It is a labour of love.

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