Woodlands Garden is divided into two major horticultural focus areas.
The Georgia Piedmont Native Garden comprises most of Woodlands. The wooded areas surrounding the old house were old farmland that had grown into a pine-hardwood forest where the children played. When developers started building apartments in the woods behind the house, the family rescued a large stand of native azaleas and brought them to Woodlands where they still thrive and bring springtime glory in yellow, pink, white and orange. Native trees such as ironwood, tulip tree, white oak and red maple thrived, while close to the ground bloodroot, trillium, partridgeberry and ginger carpeted the floors.
In 2006, Woodlands adopted a plan for a demonstration garden, unique in the southeast, to showcase native plants found in the upper Georgia Piedmont ecosystem. In this Georgia Piedmont Native Garden, dedicated volunteer gardeners continue to remove invasive plants such as ivy, honeysuckle, privet and liriope while installing a large variety of native plants. These curious and colorful plants include shrubs like paw-paw, spicebush, and sweetspire; and flowering perennials such as black cohosh, blue star, and white wood aster. Throughout the seasons, flowering shrubs, trees and wildflowers offer an ever-changing and richly rewarding environment for visitors.
The Morse Family Heritage Garden surrounds the former house site, now an open lawn. Chet and Gene gardened here for more than 60 years, installing plants that captured their interest. Classic southern spring blooming shrubs such as azaleas, rhododendrons and hydrangeas surround the area. More than 100 camellias bloom from November to March. A variety of Japanese maples bring beauty throughout the seasons: delicate unfurling leaves in spring, rich colors in autumn, and structural accents on bare branches in winter. Closer to the ground, large swaths of astilbes, hostas, hellebores and ferns complement the setting. A favorite family story says that Chet promised his young bride that there would always be something blooming in the garden, and together they made that happen.