September 3, 2013 - 3:21am

Vancouver Island residents and visitors are invited to celebrate the magic and mystery of Milner Gardens and Woodland during the Forest Fantasies event Sept. 5 to Oct. 14.

Just a short drive north of Nanaimo, Milner Gardens and Woodland is located in Qualicum Beach. The 70-acre site was named one of the top 10 best public gardens in Canada by Canadian Geographic travel magazine. Vancouver Island University acquired Milner Gardens and Woodland in 1996.

“The Forest Fantasies event will delight and inspire visitors as they stroll through the forest trails and explore the colourful autumn colours abundant at this time of year,” explains Geoff Ball, executive director of Milner Gardens.

Ancient forest trails will feature the creative talents of members of the Mid Island Floral Art Club. “These designers, many of whom have backgrounds in the floral industry, have an uncanny ability to weave natural and local botanical materials with exotic flora to create works of art that add to the mystery and magic of the forest,” adds Ball.

Club members have assisted with many previous events at Milner including Art & Photography in the Garden during the summer and at the Faces in the Forest event in 2011.

Milner Gardens and Woodland is open to the public from 10 am to 4:30 pm Thursday to Sunday, up to and including Thanksgiving Monday. Visitors can enjoy tea and other refreshments at a reburbished historic teahouse on the property.

For more information, visit


About Milner Gardens & Woodland

Milner Gardens & Woodland is a 70-acre property in Qualicum, acquired by Vancouver Island University in 1996. It’s home to a protected old growth Douglas fir forest and an established estate garden featuring native and non-native plants, including more than 400 Rhododendrun species. Milner’s educational programs includes Shoots with Roots, where children learn about the gardens and woodlands and how to plant, tend and harvest food.

Named one of the 10 best public gardens in Canada by Canadian Geographic Travel magazine, Milner Gardens and Woodland is listed as one of the seven wonders of Oceanside/Parksville/Qualicum Beach.

Thousands of visitors come to Milner each year to attend special events or visit the teahouse inside the historic home built in 1931.


Janina Stajic, Manager, Vancouver Island University

P: 250.740.6288 E: Twitter: @VIUNews

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