Date Visited: June 25, 2016
Location: 380 Corys Ln, Portsmouth, RI (about 15 minutes north of Newport, RI and 1 hour south of Boston, MA) (401) 683-1267
Hours: Open everyday 10-5 seasonally (May 21 – Oct. 10 this year but the dates may change each year)
Cost: $15.99 for adults, $6.99 for youth (ages 6-17). There are discounts available if you provide an AARP card (I’m not quite that old yet) and if you have AAA and possibly if you’re in the military. Take note that the Green Gardens is considered part of the Newport Mansions and their prices are based on how many houses you visit. In this case, the price was based on a one house tour because there is only one mansion on the premises (the Brayton House)
Parking: Free parking for 24 vehicles
Dog Friendly: No (service dogs may be allowed)
Highlights: shrubs and bushes cut into shapes of animals and other shapes, pretty flowers and gardens, mansion (Brayton House)
If you think the grass is always greener on the other side, you’ve never been to the Green Animals Topiary Garden in Portsmouth, Rhode Island.
Located adjacent to the Brayton house, the Green Animals display is the brainchild of gardener Joseph Carreiro. Carreiro began the topiary in 1905 and the 80 pieces of topiary have been in place at the garden ever since.
The topiary may be the main attraction. But the flowers and plants are also very pretty. In fact, as much as I loved the different shapes at the topiary, I found the flowers and the garden near the side of the topiary to be just as appealing.
The website states there are 80 different shapes sculpted into the greenery (although I don’t remember seeing that many). I have included the most interesting of these 80.
The Damask Rose Garden is featured at the entrance of the topiary.
The topiary has shapes of all kinds of animals. Like this giraffe.
with her/his baby giraffe (the black dot in this and some other photo is dirt on my sensor which I didn’t notice until after I got home unfortunately)
And this duck.
This is a growly bear (it is standing on its hind quarters)
Not all of the shapes are made in the image of creatures that are presently with us. This dinosaur was one of the scarier shapes in the garden.
This colorful shape is of a yew rooster
I don’t usually get this close to lions.
This swan peaked her head out among the other green animals.
This appears to be a bird
It was a little warm for a polar bear
Reindeers aren’t just in the North Pole.
There are even human shapes cut into the greenery. This human is riding a horse.
This police officer helped direct traffic around the green garden. I am not sure if he is affiliated with the Portsmouth department.
There’s even a mythical unicorn
This baby bear just wants a hug
There are even inanimate objects cut into the greenery. For instance, you can take a seat in this chair if you get tired (I am just kidding, you’re not allowed to climb and/or touch the greenery)
One of the few birds who actually sits still long enough for me to photograph him
I looked like this elephant was going to charge!
I don’t mean to boar you with this piece from the topiary.
The handout I received did not have a description for this shape. it appears to be a train.
This mommy and baby bear were sitting outside the Brayton mansion.
There is also a pet cemetery located at the topiary. Four pets of the owners are buried there. This section is very peaceful and decorative. The cemetery has a bench for sitting and reflecting and gravestones with the names of the deceased friends. It is very tranquil.
The flowers and garden are well kept and have some very vivid colors. I thought it was cute how they had “scarepeople” instead of scarecrows. I also liked the different chairs and wind vane and other decor around the grounds.
There is also a fish pond with goldfish in it.
I also liked the Brayton House. They do not allow flash photography in the house (although you can take photos with your cellphone). I don’t like how photos look on my cellphone so I didn’t take any photos in the house but it is a must see on the tour.