About the Garden:
Garvan Woodland Gardensis the botanical garden of the University of Arkansas. Nestled in the picturesque Ouachita Mountains of Southwest Arkansas, the Gardens are a wonderful gift to all people from local industrialist and philanthropist Verna Cook Garvan.Garvan Woodland Gardens is an example of The Natural State at its best: a canopy of pines reaching skyward providing protection for delicate flora and fauna, gentle lapping waves that unfold along the 4 ½ miles of wooded shoreline, and rocky inclines that remind us of the surrounding Ouachita Mountains.
Garvan Woodland Gardens' mission is to preserve and enhance a unique part of the Ouachita environment; provide people with a place of learning, research, cultural enrichment, and serenity; develop and sustain gardens, landscapes, and structures of exceptional aesthetics, design, and construction; and partner with and serve communities of which the Gardens is a part.
From the dynamic architectural structures to the majestic botanical landscapes, Garvan Woodland Gardens offers breathtaking sights (and fantastic photo opportunities) at every turn.
Verna Cook Garvan, a long-time resident of southern Arkansas, was founder and benefactress of Garvan Woodland Gardens. The Garvans made Hot Springs their home and were involved in several businesses affiliated with ABCO (A. B. Cook) Industries, the most notable being Malvern Brick and Tile Company. Now an independent department of the University's School of Architecture, the gardens continue to flourish and grow through the support of the Arkansas Legislature, Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council, Arkansas Economic Development Commission, many generous private donors, and over 3,000 members.