South Coast Gardens


  • Garden Consultation
  • Garden Design
  • Plant Selection & Identification
  • Presentations on a variety of topics, with a focus on naturalisation of gardens
  • Workshop Wednesdays

Nestled along central Lake Erie in the heart of Ontario's Carolinian Forest Region, South Coast Gardens provides landscape design services and offers a selection of trees, shrubs and perennials, including many species native to the southern Great Lakes ecoregion and eastern North America. A display garden features a diversity of plants, including many that are being tested for their cold hardiness in our USDA zone 6a/6b climate. These include Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora) and Sweetbay Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana), Sweetgum (Liquidambar syraciflua), Bald Cypress (Taxodium distichum), Alabama Snow-wreath (Neviusia alabamensis), Willow Oak (Quercus phellos) and Sourwood (Oxydendrum arboreum) among many others. Mixed in are nearly 350 species and varieties of Rhododendrons and azaleas which add colour through the spring season. Frost-hardy sub-tropical plants ideal for outdoor container gardening further enhance the garden display from spring until early November.

Eastern Flowering Dogwood flowers

The first garden beds at the nursery were established in 2006 and have been expanding each year since then. Although the gardens are still young and many specimens are still in the process of getting firmly established, from the time the first Rhododendrons and Magnolias come into flower in late April until the Asters and Witch Hazel finish blooming in October, the gardens provide a myriad of colour and attract a wide assortment of butterflies and birds. The owners are avid naturalists and record much of the wildlife seen at South Coast Gardens including more than 230 species of birds have been observed at the property!


Our 2024 season at the nursery opens on Thursday May 9th. We will be open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday 10:00Am to 5:00PM through until the Labour Day weekend at which time we will post our reduced fall hours.

We can also provide pick-up services at other times if requested. For this service plant orders must be placed at least 24 hours in advance. Once the order is confirmed, a mutually agreeable pick-up time will be arranged. If you have an interest in this service, please email us and Kevin will follow-up with you.


South Coast Gardens

Workshop Wednesday Series


This workshop will be co-led by Kevin Kavanagh and Sherry Black-Shrubb.

Water is a vital element in any living landscape and incorporating a water feature into a garden provides insects, birds and other wildlife with a critical habitat feature. As well, the sound of running water can create a soothing ambience and a small pond provides opportunities to introduce a new collection of plants into the garden. This workshop will be of interest to gardeners who want to learn how to design a water feature into their yard plan and be introduced to the key steps in constructing a nature-friendly pond. This is an outdoor and hands-on workshop. It will cover:

Workshop Wednesdays
  • An overview of the benefits of water gardening and key design considerations
  • Site location in the garden
  • Size considerations, liners, pumps & more!
  • Stones and logs
  • Aquatic plant selection and care
  • Water quality – keeping it clean
  • Winter aeration and protection of ponds

This workshop will be held in Norfolk County in the evening of Wednesday, July 12th (6:00pm – 7:15pm. There is a registration fee to attend ($17.70+HST = $20.00).

This workshop is limited to a maximum of 20 participants. Participants must register at least 24 hours in advance of the event by emailing Details will then be provided on how to pay the registration fee along with more specific details on location, parking, and rain dates.