The Dunham Entrance Garden is a lush, flourishing shade garden with canopy trees, understory shrubs, and a ground cover of herbaceous plants adjacent to the south entrance to Townsend Hall. At the entrance to the garden, an immense willow oak (Quercus phellos) provides dense shade to a large paved courtyard. Towering, majestic Japanese cryptomeria (Cryptomeria japonica) provide a visual barrier around the perimeter of the garden and shelter it from winds. Ribbons of different groundcovers nestled under the shrub layer provide homeowners with ideas of plants that will tolerate dense shade. In spring, several magnolias burst into flower creating a ceiling of fragrant pink and white petals. A gazebo houses a map of the UDBG gardens to orient visitors.
The Dunham Entrance Garden was named in honor of Dr. Charles W. Dunham who taught at the University from 1954-1984, and who co-founded the UDBG with Dr. Richard W. Lighty. Designed by students from several Landscape Architecture classes with a final design by former UD Professor Gary Smith, the plantings include several hollies and magnolias, two of Dr. Dunham’s favorite plants. The generosity of the many nurseries that donated plants for this garden is a tribute to Dr. Dunham’s involvement in plant societies, collaboration with the nursery industry, and role as an educator to the many students he taught during his 30-year academic career.