Thursday, August 11, 2022

Hiking Trails in Niles

Fernwood Botanical Garden is a 105 acre natural garden in Niles, Michigan.  It is only about 15 miles from the Day house.  Dick and I went a few years ago to see a specific exhibit, but Michelle had never been.  This was the perfect time.

The Welcome Center contains a two-level 
arboretum, gift shop, and large exhibit and teaching center.  There is also an educational center and library on site.

We even found a cool, secluded "hideout" suitable for adults.

Michelle is demonstrating the size of this enormous hibiscus bloom, and she has what she calls "basketball" hands.

There are numerous hiking trails full of beautiful vegetation and the occasional snake and squirrel.

Unlike the previous botanical garden we visited, Fernwood is much more natural and less manicured.

Included in the acreage is a 55 acre Nature Preserve consisting of hiking trails, numerous streams and a 125 foot drop in elevation down to the Saint Joseph River.

These tree-covered hiking trails on the ridge provided much cooler temperatures.

The Saint Joseph River, a tributary of Lake Michigan is one of the most beautiful rivers.  It flows in mostly a western direction across south Michigan and then southward into Indiana.  It flows right through the middle of Mishawaka where John's hospital is located.

The water wheel is one of the most favorite features of the garden.

As seen from above.

There are several buildings on the grounds and one is used for conferences, weddings and other gatherings.  Others are for over-night guests.  This one, however is probably not habitable.

Quaint but no thanks.  But, the chairs are cute and add a nice touch.

One of the "rooms" in the garden is this section that grows only herbs.  There was a large variety of interesting fragrances.

After trekking a good portion of the trails, we were more than ready for food and Dick and Michelle were in need of their caffeine fix.  This neat little Italian bistro in Niles had the most delicious food and self-brewed coffee.  It was worth the wait!

This was not the last of our outings and fun, but enough to help me recall in days ahead the great time we had with our Indiana family in the summer of 2022.

Elizabeth "Libby" Day
Elizabeth "Libby" Day

Hello, My name is Libby. I enjoy reading good books, painting, blogging, spending time with friends and whatever my "Heart" leads me to do. Welcome to Beauty Without Within.


  1. Tommy would love visiting there for sure and I'd happily tag along. :o)) So great that there is so much interesting things to do in close proximity to John and Michelle's.

  2. How awesome was that? You photos are so beautiful and OMG on the Hibiscus!!! So glad you were able to enjoy that.

  3. Hello my friend...looks like an incredible adventure!


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