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The W.J. Beal Botanical Garden is listed on the Michigan State Register of Historic Places. Information about the Garden and Professor Beal are displayed on green historical markers near the gazebo, alongside the Red Cedar River, and in Sleepy Hollow. 


Beal Garden is open to everyone, year-round, sunrise to sunset, and is always free.


The Garden is located on the campus of Michigan State University south of West Circle Drive between the Main Library and I.M. Circle. Ornate metallic gates mark the entrances from West Circle Drive. For driving directions use:

330 W Circle Drive
East Lansing, MI 48824


Visitor Parking can be found at Lot 62. The visitor lot is South of the Red Cedar River, near the corner of Chestnut Road and Red Cedar Road adjacent to Spartan Stadium. Please visit the Parking Kiosk, on the northwest corner of the lot, to remit payment for parking. Parking is free along West Circle Drive on weekends and after 6:00 on weekdays.


The Garden, once nicknamed 'The Sunken Garden,' has limited entry points for people using wheelchairs and other mobility devices. The entrances from the MSU Main Library and West Circle Drive have stairs, but the Garden may be accessed without navigating stairs by using the Red Cedar River Trail from the west end of the Administration Building or the Beal Street Bridge at the west end of the Garden. Beal Garden resides within the floodplain of the Red Cedar River.

The core of the Garden features display beds on level turf. Surrounding this collection are diverse plant collections arranged along the hillsides. Walkers can meander through these collections by the footpath. The perimeter of the Garden is enclosed by paved sidewalk.

map of Beal Botanical Garden accessibility points and amenities

Photos courtesy of Derrick Turner (left) and University Communications (center, right).