The Charlotte Partridge Ordway Japanese Garden

The Charlotte Partridge Ordway Japanese Garden is a living symbol of the peace and friendship that exists between Saint Paul and its sister city Nagasaki, Japan. A renowned landscape designer in Nagasaki, Masami Matsuda, created the garden according to time honored Japanese design principles using plants and trees that are hardy in Minnesota. Infused with true Japanese design, the garden is meant to delight your senses. The Japanese Garden is approximately from April through the beginning of November (weather dependent).


In a country as densely populated as Japan, a garden provides a source of relief and serenity in crowded, urban areas. That peace can be found just north of the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory at Como Park, in the Charlotte Partridge Ordway Japanese Garden. Like any garden, it is alive with beautiful things, making it a feast for the senses. On another level, it can be viewed as a metaphor for life’s journey, a place conducive to entering a meditative state, which calms and renews the spirit.

The garden’s design was a gift from the people of Nagasaki, St. Paul’s sister city, to the people of St. Paul. It was designed by Masami Matsuda, landscape architect from Nagasaki, as a peaceful retreat. Mr. Matsuda, however, gives credit to nature for the garden’s creation. Funds were donated by the family of Mrs. John G. Ordway. It was opened to the public in 1979, and completely renovated in 1990-1991 under Mr. Matsuda’s direct supervision. In the 2001 Como Friends launches an $8.5 million capital campaign to improve the garden. In November 2008, a City of St. Paul Landscape Architect presents the Ordway Gardens plan to Masami Matsuda in Nagasaki. In the spring of 2012 is renovated under the direction of a renowned Japanese Garden specialist, John Powell. In 2013 the Charlotte Partridge Ordway Japanese Gardens reopens.

Click HERE for more information about the elements in the Garden.

For additional information, or to schedule your wedding ceremony at the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory, contact our Wedding and Facility Rentals Department:

Phone: 651-487-8250
Email: [email protected]
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