Opened in 1995, the 5-acre San Jose Heritage Rose Garden is home to a collection of nearly 3,500 antique and modern roses comprising 3,000 varieties, more than any other rose garden in the Western Hemisphere.
A shallow, bowl-shaped depression reveals a kaleidoscope of colors as every plant can be seen from any point in the garden. Radial paths divide multiple circular beds into six sections each containing a basic class of roses. These include shrubs, hybrid teas, Chinas & teas, once-blooming and reblooming Old Garden Roses, and floribundas.
Specimens range from historic Old Garden Roses rescued from abandoned home sites to the latest modern and miniature varieties. The garden supplied cuttings for the fence of climbing roses at the Santa Clara University campus. The City of San Jose supplies materials but the garden is maintained primarily by volunteers.
The Heritage Rose Garden is distinguished from the San Jose Municipal Rose Garden just 2 miles distant in that the former serves as a botanical collection while the latter is a rose garden in a recreational park setting.