Between Nashville & Chattanooga in McMinnville, TN
Courtyard fountain highlights gardens at Falcon Rest

Gardens

After your tour, explore Falcon Rest's Gardens – a showcase for McMinnville, "the nursery capital of the world."

Falcon Rest’s five acres of gardens reflect more than a decade and a half of landscaping  efforts to create an 1890s outdoor haven.  The 100+ year-old trees planted by Clay Faulkner are complemented with fountains, sidewalks, statuary, and hundreds of plants from local nurseries.

Visitors to McMinnville always comment on the landscaping nurseries that line every highway coming into Warren County.

For years, this area has been known as “the nursery capital of the world.”

Ironically, dead cows led to the proliferation of plant nurseries that started in the late 1800’s. Some of J.H.H. Boyd’s stock died from mysterious causes, and an autopsy revealed that they had been eating seeds of a native plant called “sweet shrub.” It turned out that the seeds were valuable for medicinal purposes.

Wondering what else was growing wild in the region, Mr. Boyd eventually learned that there were more species of plants native to this area than most anywhere in the U.S. or Europe.  He started growing landscaping plants, and he encouraged his neighbors to do the same.

Today, there are hundreds of certified nurseries in the county.

Over almost two decades, Falcon Rest has taken advantage of this valuable resource by initiating an extensive landscaping program. Hundreds of evergreens and flowering shrubs from local nurseries now compliment Mr. Faulkner’s century-old trees, along with the courtyard, fountain, walkways, and statues that dot the mansion’s five-acre grounds.

Want to shop for plants in McMinnville?  There are hundreds of great nurseries, but here is a list to start with: Area nurseries open to the public 

Where history is fun
Statue in Carriage House Garden at Falcon Rest Mansion & Gardens in McMinnville, TN
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