An unusual community garden in Sheridan, Montana, Jackson’s Garden is more than just a community vegetable garden for locals only to enjoy. This beautiful growing space is open to the public and is a nonprofit that’s been around since 2009.
The beautiful gardens are great for spending an afternoon, attending a special event, hosting a family gathering, and so much more.
Important Details for Jackson’s Garden
To visit Jackson’s Garden, you may want to check the information ahead of time. Events are happening regularly, including private events and public events like garden talks, plant talks, and social gatherings of many types.
- Location: 125 Mill Creek Rd Sheridan, MT 59749
- Phone: (406) 596-0492
- Website: https://www.jacksonsgarden.org/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jacksons.garden/
- Open Hours: Dawn to dusk, daily
- Season: Year-round
- Fees: Free
- Parking: Off-street parking available in the upper east end
- Accessibility: Handicapped accessible pathways
Produce in the gardens is not for sale.
History of Jackson’s Garden
The beautiful flower and vegetable garden was first started by Les “Bing” and Betty Jackson as a hobby garden. The two teachers at Sheridan High School were heavily involved in the community as mentors and coaches, making a deep impact on the community.
The garden was started by the couple in 1972 when they purchased the property from Glen Marsh, hoping to someday build a home there. The house never came to be, but they did develop one of the largest flower gardens in Southwest Montana.
The land was covered in stone and sagebrush when they began their work as hobby gardeners, but they carefully developed the land to support the glorious flowers, shrubs, trees, and vegetable plants growing here even today. The couple hauled thousands of tons of better topsoil and compost and combined them to create the rich soil today.
The pair encouraged their friends and community to come to the garden and enjoy it, inspiring a greater passion for plants, gardening, nature, and wellbeing for all.
In 2002, Betty passed and time proved difficult for Bing to care for the garden by himself. Friends came together a few years later to help him recover the garden, and more and more people joined in the effort. In 2008, casual efforts were begun to reform the garden to what it once had been.
Then a year later, three friends (Linda Day, Janey Marsh, and Paulette Hardy) thought up the idea for the Sheridan Community Garden Project and approached Bing about the possibility of renting the space for the project. Bing happily agreed, and the garden was born!
What Makes the Jackson’s Garden So Unique?
Apart from Jackson’s Garden’s unique history, the very function of the space helps to make it unique. Many community gardens require membership for entrance, with fences and barricades discouraging wanderers from meandering their way through.
Jackson’s Garden, however, is a large, welcoming space where all are welcome!
The produce grown here is for members only (nothing for sale currently), but the gardens are a pleasurable space for a walk, picnic, special event, or community event.
The deer fence, irrigation system, and greenhouses are all useful tools for helping keep the wildlife out and the vegetables in, but the gardens are for all to enjoy, both on the nature trail and the regular walkways and lawns.
What is There to Do and See at Jackson’s Garden?
Enjoy the many delightful amenities and spaces throughout Jackson’s garden.
- Bring a picnic to the gazebo
- Take a break on the gardening seat
- Play with the kiddos at the playhouse, swings, and sandbox
- Enjoy birdwatching
- Walk the Creekside Nature Trail
- Recreate on the lawns and open spaces
- Bring your dogs on leash only
- Participate in local events
Before heading to Jackson’s Garden, you may wish to watch a virtual tour so you know what to expect.
Local Events at the Gardens
If you’ll be in town for a few days or longer, you may want to make your way to Jackson’s Gardens for local events.
On Fridays in July and August, a free member-led yoga class is available at 1 pm, weather permitting.
Sheridan Farmer’s Market and Live Music at Sheridan Main Street Park
July and August on Thursdays from 5 to 7 pm, come enjoy the market and music for a special local experience.
Free Community Concert
On September 4, 2022, at 5:30, bring your picnic and lawn chairs along for a free concert in the garden, featuring Dan Henry.
Native Plant Talk
On September 11, 2022, at 6 pm, come along for a $5 class on native plants with arborist Frank McKeever.
Backyard Composting Workshop
On September 18, 2022, learn about backyard composting from extension agent Kaleena Miller. The class is at 6 pm, with a fee of $5 for non-members.
Community Potluck and Live Music
September 24, 2022, at 5 pm, the community potluck and live music with Jesse Taylor are free for all!
Visiting Jackson’s Garden
Jackson’s Garden is a stunning choice for a casual, free day around Sheridan, Montana. The beautiful flower gardens welcome everyone for free, with free parking and lovely seating throughout, local events to get a feel for the community or simply enjoy, and much more.
If you’re planning a visit, be sure to:
- Arrive between dawn and dusk
- Wear comfortable walking shoes and enjoy the nature trail!
- Wear weather-appropriate clothing
- Bring a picnic
- Check the calendar ahead of time for any special events that may be occurring while you’re in the area
- Bring your pooch on its leash!
- Bring a camera for some lovely snapshots throughout
- Leave the produce growing in the garden alone