You certainly don’t have to be a “flower person” to appreciate the vibrant colors and impressive variety of blooms that are showcased throughout the spring in botanical gardens across the country. Check out some of the most popular places where you really can stop and smell the roses.

5 Best Gardens to Visit in May from Drive The Nation

Desert Botanical Garden (Phoenix, AZ)

Desert Botanical Gardens

By Simeon87 (Own work) via Wikimedia Commons

While the climate here is hot and dry, this garden’s trails offer a peek at more than 50,000 plants that are anything but stuffy or stagnant. It is the Southwest, after all, so the star of the show is the cacti. However, you’ll also find paths lined with gorgeous wildflowers, desert herbs, and yucca shrubs and trees. There’s even a trail dedicated to how locals have used plants throughout history.

U.S. Botanic Garden (Washington, D.C.)

U.S. Botanic Garden

By USCapitol (U.S. Botanic Garden Convervatory) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Located in our nation’s capital, the U.S. Botanic Garden is free to explore, and is home to all sorts of flora, including orchids, ferns, medicinal herbs, and even meat-eating species! Events and programs, like lunchtime conservatory tours and outdoor concert series, make the garden an ideal place to spend a beautiful afternoon. The plants aren’t the only things worth snapping photos of here. Don’t miss the picture-perfect view of the Capitol dome and the garden’s conservatory from the park’s amphitheater!

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx, NY)

New York Botanical Garden

By LeoTar (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons

It’s not located right in Manhattan, but this 240-acre expanse of forests, gardens, and wetland trails is totally worth the drive, subway or train ride. You’ll feel worlds away from the Bronx as your stroll through the different environments, taking in everything from roses and peonies to maple trees and crabapples.

Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens (Richmond, VA)

Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens

By Mark Gormus, via Wikimedia Commons

Richmond Virginia’s Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens hosts several fun and enriching activities throughout the spring season. These include WaterPlay weekends for kids and Butterflies LIVE!, an indoor exhibit that celebrates the beautiful winged creatures and educates visitors about their behavior and habitats.

Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden (Coral Gables, FL)

Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden

By Knight Foundation, via Wikimedia Commons

Seeking a warm(er) weather escape? Head to the Miami, Florida area and soak up the sun at Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden. On a visit in May, you might spy several types of ginger plants, giant milkweed and wild sage, and even yummy-sounding blooms like the ice cream bean, fried egg tree, and indigo berry! Through the end of the month, the garden is also featuring pieces from glass artist Chihuly. They’re interspersed with the plants, so it’s like strolling through a garden and museum exhibit at the same time!