The Heartland Harvest Garden
Welcome to America’s premier edible landscape—where every tree, shrub, flower and groundcover is part of the story of where our food comes from. In the heartland of America, this signature garden captures the spirit of Kansas City. Here, our rich soils and prime farmland make agriculture a shining star.
Seasonal display beds inspire home gardeners and chefs to discover new color, creativity, and plants with each visit. Four season food productions is on display in the Seed to Plate Greenhouse and Potager Menue Garden.
There are several unique displays within the Heartland Harvest Garden. Make sure to visit the Apple Cider Court, Vineyard, Native Edge, Quilt Garden, All-American Selection Garden, and Children’s Garden.
The Journey of Food from Seed to Plate
From seed to plate, the Heartland Harvest Garden is an adventure in learning in a garden designed to satisfy all the senses. As you explore the fruits and vegetables, grains and nuts and so much more you may often find yourself saying, “Oh that’s the plant where that (food) comes from!”
You will see a wide range of edible varieties from heirloom and modern to even some plants on trial for the future. The Heartland Harvest Garden focuses on the sense of taste. Taste tests are often made available through pop-up visitor tasting stations and special events. The produce, herbs, and other edibles from this garden are used by staff chefs at reFresh, Cafe Thyme, and special events. In 2020, the Perennial Lounge will introduce opportunities to purchase produce during your visit.
A visit to the Missouri Barn’s silo observation deck is a must, where you can overlook the whole garden and see its quilt patterns.
Heartland Harvest Garden Highlights
The Missouri Barn and Silo, designed by Maurice Jennings Architects, is built of cedar wood with room for 200 under its eaves.
Visitors may grad a snack or beverage here as they take in views of the Quilt and Children’s Gardens. The silo, modeled after traditional Missouri barn silos, is 45 feet tall. Visitors may climb to the top for some of the best views in the Garden.
The main walk into the Heartland Harvest Garden passes through the Seed to Plate Greenhouse. In this area, sown seeds grow before being transplanted into the Heartland Harvest Garden landscape. The greenhouse provides a jump start on production for some tender or slow-growing varieties as it makes it easier to monitor small seedlings.
Arbors of grapes lined by roses and thorn-less blackberries lead you to the ornate entrance gates of the vineyard. A central walk bisects rows of grapes, ending at a wine cask fountain set under a beautiful rose and grape-clad arbor reminiscent of a garden in paradise.
Grapes for Every Purpose
Powell Gardens’ vineyard is not here to make wine but to display the marvelous diversity of grapes one can grow in Greater Kansas City. Each row has a different theme, beginning with purple, multi-use seeded grapes used for making jams, jellies and juice.
The last row shows the grape varieties used to make white wines in our region. Fifty of the best varieties of grapes for our region are on display and each row ends with a hybrid tea rose, which not only adds beauty and edible flowers to the landscape but also act as the “canaries in the mineshaft” to foretell any problems that may affect the grapes.
Hyssop is planted beneath each row as a companion plant and adds to the charm with blue flowers in June and again later in the summer. Other companion plants include roses, lavender, chrysanthemums, blackberries, hazelnuts and redbuds.
Chateau Villandry, located outside Paris, France, inspired this formal garden within the Heartland Harvest Garden. Each quadrant is planted with a different pattern. Here, vegetables and other edibles are planted three times each year for harvests in spring, summer, and autumn. Themes change annually so each visit is unique.