VanDusen Botanical Garden is situated in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Named for local lumberman and philanthropist Whitford Julian Van Dusen, it has been a public garden since its opening on August 30, 1975, it is managed by the Vancouver Park Board and run by a large staff of volunteers. VanDusen Botanical Garden is located in the Shaughnessy neighbourhood of Vancouver at the North West corner of 37th and Oak Street. The garden is open to the public every day of the year except Christmas. There are admission fees. The Garden covers 22 hectares (55 acres) and displays plants gathered from all over the world.
In 1970 the Vancouver Foundation, the provincial government, and the city of Vancouver signed an agreement to develop a public garden on part of the old Shaughnessy Golf Course. An early decision not to partake in scientific research enabled the channelling of funds and energy into garden construction and released the staff from the responsibility of building research collections or a herbarium. However, there is a specialized reference library in the Administration Floral Hall Building.
The grounds include a garden shop, a book and seed library, and a restaurant. There are several special attractions, including carved totem poles, large stone sculptures and a Korean Pavilion whose architecture is the focus for the Asian plant collection. Horticulturally, there is a large collection of Rhododendron hybrids, cultivars of Fagus sylvatica, as well as collections of Sorbus, Fraxinus and Magnolia. There is a Heather garden and a major collection of Ilex acquifolium cultivars. The garden is designed to be enjoyed by people of all ages and backgrounds. Many of the plant collections are labelled and arranged to demonstrate botanical relationships or geographical origins. There are guided tours, lectures, and workshops available. Site rentals for events are also offered. It also plays host to the yearly VanDusen Garden Show and the winter Festival of Lights.
R. Roy Forster was recognized with the Order of Canada on April 14, 1999, for his work in creating the gardens.