When a plot of land came up for sale across the street from the home of Bill and Virginia Clemens, they purchased it and then donated the land to the City of St. Cloud Park Department. Known for her love of roses and flowers, the late Virginia Clemens battled multiple sclerosis for more than 40 years. As a true act of love, and a way to give something back to the community, Bill Clemens funded the establishment and maintenance of the Clemens Gardens. In 1990 Bill and Virginia Clemens funded the construction of the rose garden, purchased 1100 rose bushes, and even paid the wages for a rose grower. This led to the development of the Virginia Clemens Rose Garden, which is now part of six separate gardens along Kilian Boulevard that make up the Clemens Gardens.
The flavor of European gardens comes alive along this stretch of Kilian Boulevard. The six gardens that make up the Clemens Gardens offer a feast for the senses - especially for the eyes. Savor the sweet-smelling roses. Gaze at the explosions of color set off by the various shades and hues of green. Be surprised by the interesting shapes formed by the gardeners' creative trimming of various small trees, hedges, and bushes.
Stroll along the red-brick walkways of Clemens Gardens and you can see firsthand the nurturing that has gone into this series of gardens. Stand just south of the restroom area and the rose garden, and look further south, up the hill to the fountain and treillage garden, and you can feel an inspiring symmetry in the design of these gardens.
Virginia Clemens Rose Garden
Named after our benefactor and long time neighbor Virginia Clemens. Virginia passed away on August 31, 1998, after a long battle with Multiple Sclerosis. A bronze rose memorial honoring her is located on the east side of the garden.
There are 1,100 roses including floribundas, tree roses, hybrid teas, shrub roses, and grandifloras.
Rest Area Garden
One of the tallest outdoor fountains in Minnesota, The Renaissance Fountain with Cranes, features a replica of a sculpture of Hebe, cupbearer to the gods. The restrooms and the Gardens Gift Shop are here. There is a deck to rest on and trellises covered with flowering clematis and rose vines. The Grand Entrance can be seen in front of the fountain. Throw a coin in one of the three tiers of the fountain or relax on one of the botanical settees.
Designed and built by staff and youth laborers in the summer of 1986, this is the garden that started it all. It was initially installed as an extension of Munsinger Gardens to grow sun-loving flowers. In the center is the Windsor Court Fountain, a low two-tiered fountain with bronze bathing swans.
First planted in the summer of 1994, this garden was inspired by the world-renowned White Garden at Sissinghurst Castle in Kent, England.
This Garden features cold hardy perennials that can survive in the tough Minnesota winters. In the center of the garden is a replica of a pre-Civil War fountain patterned after one in Columbus, Georgia. The twelve-foot tall cast-iron fountain was the second fountain installed in the Clemens Gardens.
A custom Arbor Treillage that is 104 feet long and has a central dome 24 feet high, and is surrounded by four one-color gardens. Under the central dome of the Treillage is the Three Graces Fountain. Commissioned by the Clemens family, it is the first fountain accentuated with bronze sculptures.