Bridge in Japanese Garden

Restore Garden Heritage

Our magnificent heritage gardens are now more than 100 years old. There is much to be done to protect and enhance the Royal Roads gardens for the future. What will your gift grow?

Renew the Japanese Gardens

Bordered by a lake and bisected by quiet streams, the Japanese Gardens are perhaps the most cherished sanctuary on the Royal Roads campus.

Designed at the turn of the last century by Isaburo Kishida, the garden was the first of the formal gardens to be built at Hatley Castle—a trendy choice for Victoria’s most stylish estates in the Edwardian era.

Today a peaceful oasis in a pandemic-weary world, the garden has reached a venerable age. Compassionate care is now urgently required to preserve both plants and infrastructure.

In 2020, generous RRU donors enabled the repair of the traditional water wheel, along with the re-installation of three Japanese crane sculptures.

Now, with your support, Royal Roads will move to launch a full-scale restoration of the Japanese Gardens, improving accessibility and enhancing the restorative environment to benefit generations to come. Our Vision in Bloom campaign will mark the beginning of this important initiative.

Spring in the Japanese Gardens
Water wheel in Japanese Garden
Front of the Glasshouse

Restore the Glass House

Laura Dunsmuir—wife to former BC Lieutenant Governor James Dunsmuir—enjoyed the daily luxury of cut flowers grown in her very own Edwardian conservatory.

Today, the aged Glass House within the Walled Garden still serves to nurture seedlings, but time is running out to preserve this unique heritage structure—one of the last of its kind in Canada.

After recently stabilizing the building to ensure safety, the focus now turns to a full restoration: upgrading the wood framing; replacing failing glass and seals; converting gas boilers to electric; improving accessibility; and reimagining opportunities for community engagement.

With donor support, the Glass House—once enjoyed by only a privileged few—will serve as a dynamic 21st century hub of teaching, learning and research for a broad audience with a passion for plants and a desire to tend a healthier planet.