Skip to main content

Reiman Gardens records

 Record Group — Multiple Containers
Identifier: RS 5/7

Scope and Content

This collection consists of materials related to Reiman Gardens. Records include news clippings, newsletters, brochures, biographical files, Reiman Gardens CoHorts records and Historian's books, administrative records, and slides and photographs. Administrative records include significant landscape blueprints and drawings.


  • 1968-2012

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

Open for research.

Use/Re-use Restrictions

Consult Special Collections and University Archives


Iowa State University has managed a horticulture garden since 1914. The first location was north of the Farm House at the Horticulture Research Station. In the early 1960s, the gardens were moved to a site on the northeast corner of the Iowa State University campus north of the power plant. This particular site offered little room for expansion and was surrounded by the campus's industrial zone.

In the early 1990s, faculty in the Horticulture department and university administrators discussed the possibility of moving the gardens to a larger, more visible location to beautify the entrance to the city of Ames and Iowa State University. In 1993, alumnus Roy Reiman and his wife Bobbi generously gave $1.3 million to initiate Phase One of the new gardens. Construction began in 1994 at a location immediately south of Jack Trice Stadium along Elwood Drive (University Boulevard), and Reiman Gardens was officially dedicated in 1995. At its opening, Reiman Gardens covered just five acres, which included the entry court, herb garden, rose garden, campanile garden, Mahlstede Horticulture Learning Center, and a maintenance building. The Gardens have continued to grow over the last eight years to cover fourteen acres. The most recent addition is the Conservatory Complex and Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing, which opened in November 2002.

Rodney Robinson Landscape Architects, a landscape architecture firm in Wilmington, Delaware, designed the Gardens. Robinson was selected because of his experience at other public gardens including Longwood Gardens and the Washington Mall. ISU faculty and staff were also active in the development of the Gardens' master and planting plans.

Daryl Metzger, of Architects Smith Metzger in Des Moines, designed the buildings within the Gardens. The architecture reflects a Midwestern style, inspired by the state's agricultural traditions.


15.63 Linear Feet (4 half-document boxes, 15 document boxes, 4 record center boxes, 2 oversize boxes, 5 map case folders)

Processing Information

Released on 2018-06-25.

RS 5/7. Reiman Gardens records, 1968-2012
February 25, 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives Repository

403 Parks Library
701 Morrill Road
Iowa State University
Ames Iowa 50011-2102 United States
(515) 294-6672