An ever-evolving open-air museum


Gardens  |  Art, Design & History  |   Local cuisine

An ever-evolving open-air museum


Gardens  |  Art, Design & History  |   Local cuisine

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Few gardens have been built under such adverse atmospheric conditions. Located 300 km North-East of Quebec City, the gardens created by Elsie Reford are amongst the most northern in North America.

Few gardens have been built under such adverse atmospheric conditions. Located 300 km North-East of Quebec City, the gardens created by Elsie Reford are amongst the most northern in North America.


ColumbineAquilegia sp.
KnapweedCentaurea montana
Alpine PinkDianthus alpinus
GentianGentiana alpina
CranesbillGeranium sp.
Day LilyHemerocallis lilioasphodelus
Day LilyHemerocallis sp.
IrisIris germanica
Siberian IrisIris siberica
Iris versicolorIris versicolor
Martagon LilyLilium martagon
LupinLupinus podophyllus
Blue PoppyMeconopsis betonicifolia
Blue PoppyMeconopsis betonicifolia ’Alba’
Forget-Me-NotMyosotis alpestris
PeonyPaeonia sp.
PeonyPaeonia ’Veitchii’
CinquefoilPotentilla fruticosa
Japanese PrimrosePrimula japonica
Red Hot PokerPrimula vialii
AzaleaRhododendron sp.
Burnet RoseRosa pimpinellifolia
Shrub RosaRosa sp.
London PrideSaxifraga umbrosa
SaxifrageSaxifrage sp.
Garland SpiraeaSpiraea arguta
Preston LilacSyringa prestoniae
GlobeflowerTrollius europeanus
Globe flowerTrollius japonicus
Common PeriwinkleVinca minor
WeigelaWeigela florida


Free Sundays

Every first Sunday of the month is a free Sunday!  Les Jardins de Métis / Reford Gardens are participating in the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications' measure of free admission to museum ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-03 - 2022-08-07 - 2022-09-04 - 2022-10-02
Place: Jardins de Métis / Reford Gardens
Price: 0$

The AFBL's Workshops

Throughout the summer, our team of naturalists will host an interactive booth where you can discover the unsuspected uses of wood. Indeed, from the bathroom to the classroom, forest products are prese ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-06 - 2022-07-13 - 2022-07-20 - 2022-07-27 - 2022-08-03 - 2022-08-10 - 2022-07-03 - 2022-08-05
Place: Derrière le Café Jardins
Price: 0$

Launching - RESTORATION by Mark Raynes Roberts

“The Covid pandemic has changed the world we live in, limiting our interaction with one another and reordering how we communicate as human beings. The idea for “RESTORATION” grew fr ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-08
Place: Salle Desjardins de la villa Estevan
Price: 0$

Literary Tea of Catherine Perrin

Accompanying musicians: Normand Forget and Mathieu Lussier Catherine Perrin will read for us a few excerpts from her two most recent novels. The oboist and professor at the Conservatoire de Rimouski, ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-10
Place: À confirmer
Price: 25$

Les saumons de la Mitisipu

Les saumons de la Mitisipu Text: Christine Beaulieu Artistic director: Geneviève Lizotte Sound design: Frédéric Auger With Christine Beaulieu and Alice Pascual   Performance offered free of ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-15 - 2022-07-16 - 2022-07-17
Place: La Véranda de Pierre Thibault
Price: 0$

Launching - The Reford Gardens - As Time Goes By...

Louise Tanguay invites you to the launch of her mural exhibition The Reford Gardens - As Time Goes By... and the launch of her eponymous book. Event taking place rain or shine, July 15th at 5pm.& ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-15
Place: Pavillion d'accueil / Visitor Centre
Price: 0$

Così fan tutte - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as an opera apero

Così fan tutte is an opera presented by the students of the Rimouski music conservatories and the students of the Saguenay music conservatory. They will interpret Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-20
Place: L'espace scénique La Véranda de Pierre Thibault
Price: 0$

Faunes - Variations

Danièle Desnoyers and her company Le Carré des Lombes return to the Reford Gardens to present a new event. The Quebec choreographer continues her investigation of dance "outside the wall ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-28 - 2022-07-27 - 2022-07-26 - 2022-07-25
Place: Jardins historiques et Véranda de Pierre Thibault - Historic Gardens and Pierre Thibault's Véranda
Price: 0$

«Elsie Reford - héroïne d`Anaïs» - A Reading with Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette

Nos héroïnesClick here to reserve Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette invites young people to discover the portraits of 40 little-known Quebec women, whether they were sportswomen, nuns, scientists or artists ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-07-31
Place: Grand hall
Price: 0$

Musical Picnics

Every Sunday from July 3 to August 21, from 11:30 AM to noon and a quarter and from 1 PM to 1:45 PM, the Conservatoire de musique de Rimouski will hold its musical picnics at the arboretum near the Vi ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-14 - 2022-07-03 - 2022-07-10 - 2022-07-17 - 2022-07-24 - 2022-07-31 - 2022-08-07 - 2022-08-21
Place: Arboretum
Price: 0$

Literary Tea of Alain Farah

Accompanying musician: Rosaline Deslauriers Host: Maxime Catellier The author will present his most recent novel, Mille secrets mille dangers published by Le Quartanier and finalist for the Prix des ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-14
Place: L'aire Desjardins du Grand hall
Price: 25$

Garden Party with Ricardo Larrivée

On August 17, 2022, to celebrate the platinum jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, marking the 70th anniversary of her accession to the throne, Les Jardins de Métis are proud to welcome R ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-17
Place: Arboretum
Price: 0$

English tea ceremony with Ricardo

Come and attend the English tea ceremony as a celebration of Queen Elizabeth II's jubilee with Ricardo Larrivée, Annie Vanasse (director of the Conservatoire de musique de Rimouski) and Alexand ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-17
Place: villa Estevan lodge
Price: 200$

Dansons aux Jardins! (Let's Dance at the Gardens)

Dansons aux Jardins! is a choreographic journey in contemporary dance, music and sculptures that will be presented in the Reford Garens on Thursday 18 - Friday 19 and Saturday 20 August at 3 pm. Compo ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-20 - 2022-08-19 - 2022-08-18
Place: Festival international de jardins - International Garden Festival
Price: 0$

Literary tea of Robert Lalonde and Marie-Hélène Voyer

Accompanying musicians: Cylia Themens et Jean Humpich Host: Annie Landreville With L'habitude des ruines, Marie-Hélène Voyer questions our relationship to built heritage, between her childhood in ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-08-28
Place: L'aire Desjardins du Grand hall
Price: 25$

Literary tea of Isabelle Miron

Literary performance L’estran Accompanying musicians: Dâvi Simard, violin, Mili Hong, percussion and Sébastien Sauvageau, guitar L'estran was born from the encounter between poet Isabelle Miron, ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-09-11
Place: À confirmer
Price: 25$

Literary tea of Rodney St-Éloi and Yara El-Ghadban

Literary performance Les racistes n’ont jamais vu la mer A collaboration with the Salon du livre de Rimouski Host: Élise Argouarc'h Rodney Saint-Éloi and Yara El-Ghadban are co-authors of the e ... (View the event)

Date: 2022-09-25
Place: L'aire Desjardins du Grand hall
Price: 25$

Remarkable gardens

Built from 1926 to 1958 by a forward-thinking horticulturist called Elsie Reford, the Reford Gardens are one of Canada’s national historic sites. Some 3000 species and plant varieties, including the famous Himalayan blue poppy, are spread out over 15 gardens.

Explore our gardens

A fascinating history

It’s in the summer of 1926 that Elsie Reford (1872-1967) began transforming her fishing camp on the Metis River into a garden. Located hundreds of kilometers away from the nearest nursery, she faced challenges that are difficult to conceive of today. Where experienced specialists had failed, she succeeded in turning her spruce forest into a gigantic garden that would become one of the largest plant collections of its time. Elsie hired and trained people from the region like farmers and fishing guides in order to turn them into master gardeners. Over three decades, they’ve built a magnificent garden together.

Art everywhere

As an innovative cultural space, the Reford Gardens welcome a large number of artists each year and present an array of exhibitions scattered throughout the gardens and beyond its grounds.

Browse our exhibits

The collection

The Amis des Jardins collection is based on memories and physical traces gathered by the estate owners throughout their lives, as well as on the development of a collection of contemporary works related to the historic and contemporary gardens.

What’s on

Deeply rooted in its community, the Reford Gardens are one the region’s inescapable cultural poles. Literary tea parties, outdoor concerts, conferences, training, happy hour, culinary events, outdoor hikes and environmental chores… there truly is something for everyone.

Our restaurants

Rooted in its history yet looking to the future, the Garden’s restaurant, bar and café serve as a showcase for creative local cuisine. Chef Frédérick Boucher and his crew work with our gardeners to develop innovative dishes that adapt and evolve alongside the harvest.

Discover our restaurants

SINCE 1962




plant varieties
and species


historic and
contemporary gardens




Judith Webster and Elsie’s Garden Diaries

A Notebook by Daphne Moss

During the construction of Les Jardins de Métis, Elsie Reford kept a detailed record of everything that happened in her garden through 30 gardening notebooks. In order to make them more readable and accessible, Judith Webster, a passionate volunteer, has been hard at work transcribing them.

Louise Tanguay – Our Earth Day Heroine

A Notebook by Alexander Reford

For Earth Day this year we are celebrating Louise Tanguay – photographer, environmentalist and ecologist.

Notebook – Elsie and Music

A Notebook by Alexander Reford

The year 2022 is the 150th anniversary of the birth of Elsie Reford. Les Amis des Jardins de Métis is celebrating this anniversary with a series of exhibitions, publications, concerts, lectures and special events. Among the special events is the restoration of her 17th century violin – to bring Elsie Reford’s instrument back to life so that it can be played for the first time in a century