Quebec Press Garden Tour 2003
Including Mosaiculture & Reford Gardens

Thursday morning I left from the Edmonton airport to arrive in Montreal at 3:20 p.m. From there I went to our hotel for the first leg of this tour.

Our hotel was the Hotel Le Saint-Sulpice, a beautiful boutique hotel in old Montreal, just down the street from Notre-Dame Basilica. This elegant 108 luxury suite hotel has taken shape on the historic site that was once the residence of Charles LeMoyne, Sieur d’Iberville, one of Canada’s most successful fur traders. I checked in and then went to the 3rd floor and when I opened the door I was greeted with a most wonderful and large room. Very posh with it’s own little kitchenette to make tea in the evening. The picture of the umbrellas is the inner patio that I can see from my room. Our room was courtesy of the hotel and Tourisme Montreal. Visit Visit

Quick to the room to change then in the lobby by 5 so we could all meet and head out to Chateau Ramezay Museum then on to the Montreal Botanical Garden.

On our walk over we had a professional tourist guide that was so informative we all felt very comfortable in this area knowing its history up to the present. The island of Montreal is approx. 25 x 10 kms and has 24 bridges. The Chateau is also in the heart of old Montreal and once was a residence of the Governor of Montreal. It now houses a collection of historic objects dating from pre-contact Amerindian days to the early 20th century. The architecture is of the French Regime and the first building to be classified as an historic monument by the Government of Quebec. What we visited was the Governor’s Garden, a quiet haven in the middle of a bustling city. The tour group was divided and led by the two people you see here in period costume. It is a replica of an 18th century seigneurial garden and invites you to stroll among the four distinct yet very important plots. There are herbs and medicinal plants like maidenhair fern that at one time was second to beaver pelts in export. It was used in the manufacture of shampoo. Ornamental, food plants and fruit trees and bushes complete the plots. Each was vital as this was the only source of fresh available.

Called the most beautiful house in Canada, it was built in 1705 by Claude de Ramezay who hired a master mason and architect, Pierre Couturier. At that time there was a garden and the orchard alone covered 41,880 square feet. The property has a wonderful history including that of The Beaver House, the headquarters of the American Revolutionary Army and from 1778-1893 it was a prestigious residence which included the Special Council, the Court House, the Ministry of Public Education, the Jacques-Cartier Normal School, Laval University’s faculty of medicine and law and finally the Court of Queen’s Bench.

In 1893 the Government no longer needed the building and it was to be sold at auction. The City of Montreal acquired the building after much persuasion from the Antiguarian and Numismatic Society of Montreal. They agreed to establish a museum, a portrait gallery and a library. In 1929 the City of Montreal officially recognized this building as a heritage building.

There are many events that take place from June to September.

Visit their website at


Our coach was ready to meet us (courtesy of Tourisme Quebec) and take us to the Montreal Botanical Garden, where we were met and greeted and then led over to drinks and nibbles. Then it was time to do some visiting in the gardens. The last time I had seen this garden was in 1982 and I was in for some very nice changes. This garden has a collection of 22,000 plant species and cultivars, 10 exhibition greenhouses, 30 thematic gardens, and teams of researchers and activities staff. It ranks as one of the world’s largest and most spectacular botanical gardens. Rightly so and well deserved. The Japanese Garden has a brand new Tea Garden and the Chinese Garden is the largest of its kind outside of China. If you are into insects you will get the chance to visit some of the most beautiful in the Montreal Insectarium. This is unique in North America so make sure you bring the children along for this visit.

We wound our way through many gardens and ended up in the Japanese Garden where we were again greeted with drinks and nibbles. It was a wonderful visit and I think most of us said – not enough time! Thank you Montreal Botanical Garden and Tourisme Montreal!




  • New Eden
  • Kids Garden
  • Plant a Row Grow a Row