Skip to main content
The Formal Garden in spring, with yellow, magenta, and white tulips, trees, and views of a pergola.Sherry Nedens


Nearly four acres of gardens for exploration and relaxation

When Nathan and Jessie Kimberly Paine began planning their new home in the mid-1920’s, they envisioned not just a house, but an elaborate setting in the style of an English country estate. Once the family’s cow pasture, the vacant Algoma Boulevard property had several majestic oak trees that Nathan admired. As he envisioned a house carved out of the woods, he oversaw the additional planting of five hundred trees – mostly evergreens – that triple-ringed the property to create a secluded glade.

When the estate opened to the public in 1948, it was called the Paine Art Center and Arboretum. However, over time the original landscape design waned as aging, diseased, and damaged trees needed to be removed. The grounds evolved into a series of interconnected gardens reminiscent of English country estates, with botanical and sculptural focal points leading to various areas, plants in unexpected places, and surprising combinations. While the original landscape has evolved, Nathan and Jessie’s pride in their English heritage continues to be reflected in the estate.