About Leach Botanical Garden
Mission Statement - Leach Botanical Garden offers immersive, restorative, and educational experiences in a unique landscape of native plants and horticultural collections for the purpose of building community, celebrating nature, and inspiring environmental stewardship.
Situated along a free-flowing creek in outer SE Portland, the garden is an inviting, restorative urban greenspace. The Upper Garden features an entry plaza, aerial tree walk, four-season pollinator garden, and basalt stone sculptural installation. The hillside and lower garden feature native plants, historic Leach plant collections, meandering, wooded trails, and riparian area pathways along Johnson Creek.
The “Sleepy Hollow '' estate that John and Lilla Leach lovingly created and tended for over 36 years was donated to Portland Parks in 1980. Thanks to the newly elected Parks Commissioner, Charles Jordan, the estate was retained by Parks, and a grass-roots, non-profit organization was quickly formed to work in partnership with Portland Parks to care for the garden and ensure its future. More About John & Lilla Leach
The original 4.7 acre property has grown to almost 17 acres with adjacent land purchased over the years by Portland Parks. Leach Garden Friends works closely with Parks to ensure that the unique property remains a well-cared for gem that both serves and is treasured by the larger community. Today more than 12 staff members along with a dedicated group of volunteers care for the property, offer events and tours, handle garden maintenance, work to replenish native plant habitat, engage underserved communities with hands-on learning, and provide visitor services to more than 30,000 people per year.
Partnership with Portland Parks & Recreation
The partnership between Leach Garden Friends and Portland Parks
has endured for 40 years. Portland Parks is now in the process of phasing out its pass-through funding of garden operations, necessitating the creation of an endowment for garden operations, and requiring an entrance fee for the first time in the Garden’s history.