Despite the name, these grounds are not an experimental greenhouse laboratory, but rather three terraced gardens, set on 4½ acres, where more than 10,000 bushes and some 550 varieties of roses grow. The flowers, many of them new varieties, are at their peak in June, July, September, and October. From the gardens you can take in highly photogenic views of the downtown skyline and, on fine days, the Fuji-shaped slopes of Mt. Hood, 50 miles to the east. Summer concerts take
place in the garden's amphitheater. It's a pretty but hilly 30- to 40-minute walk from downtown, or you can get here via MAX light rail (either to Washington Park or Kings Hill/S.W. Salmon Street stations); then transfer to Bus No. 63 (no weekend service) or Washington Park shuttle (late May–early September only).