gardens were named for Perry D. Slocum, internationally known
hybridizer, who received the Water Lily Hall of Fame Award
in 1986. Perry was the President of the International Water
Lily Society from 1988-89.
Perry’s Water Gardens is a Wholesale/Retail Aquatic
plant nursery established in 1980 by Perry D. Slocum and
is known for shipping high quality mature plants. It started
out as a quiet place for Perry to retire and do some hybridizing.
As Perry’s enthusiasm grew, so did the bloomin’ business.
It is now owned and operated by me, Ben R. Gibson. Perry
was my stepfather and I bought the gardens in 1986 and worked
along side Perry until his death in 2004. Not only was his
death a great loss for our family but also a great loss to
Water Garden enthusiasts around the world. With his guided
hand, outstanding wisdom and an eye for detail, he leaves
us all a legacy of beauty scattered throughout water gardens
all over the world. We thank him for his gifts of color through
his hybridized plants and Photographs, his willingness to
share his knowledge with his detailed publications, and fatherly
advice. We dedicate our Website to memory of the loved and
lost…Perry D. Slocum.
We welcome you to visit us in Cowee Valley, located in the
beautiful Western North Carolina Mountains and welcome any
questions you might have concerning Water Gardening. Above
lists our “Contact Us Page” if you have any inquires
and/or Plant Care questions. We review and
reply personally. Based on demands of our time and the volume
of questions- we will reply as possible to each question
or inquiry submitted. We welcome any commits on what you
would like to see on this site and how to better serve you.
We are open for Visitors April 1 thru Labor Day.
During fall and winter, please call for appointment due to availability and dormancy of plants.
No admission fee.
Donations are accepted.
Monday-Friday 9am – 5pm
Saturday 9am - 2pm
Closed on Sundays
Always call before making a trip for any updated seasonal hours as well as updates on what's blooming and availability of plants and fish.
The best time of day to view our Nymphaea (water lilies
varieties) is 10 am to 2pm whereas many varieties don’t
begin to open until between 9am and 10am and like wise begin
to close slowly after 2pm. Our Nymphaea (water lilies) begin
to bloom early April and began to decrease blooming in early
The same time of day applies also to our Nelumbo(Lotus varieties)
they open and close their blooms also. Nelumbo begin to bloom
in Mid June and begin to decrease flowering in the first
part of August in our region.
To view our Water Iris varieties April is the month they
show their colors.
We are open for sales throughout the year, but would like
for you to call before visiting from October thru March.
The height of our blooming season is the month of July.
Along with Water lilies and Lotus, many of our Bog and Poolside
plants are in full bloom.
Our Water Gardens is a natural habitat for wildlife. Please
don’t pick or pick up Black Walnuts, Blueberries, Raspberries,
Blackberries or Persimmons they feed wildlife roaming grounds
and surrounding areas.
Before visiting consider using sunscreen or bug repellent,
bring refreshments especially during the heat season. We
do not market food items at this time. An umbrella for shade
while walking is nice and needed for the pop-up rain shower.
Services Available from Perry’s:
Monthly Pond Care and cleaning service
Ask about our Annual Lotus Flower Festival.
From Ashville NC.
- Take I-40 west, then take Exit 27, stay on 23 South
- Then take Exit 81, go about 14 miles and you will began
to descend Cowee Mountain.
- Just beyond it’s base take a right on Sanderstown Rd.(Next to Mountain
City Mobile Homes) follow Sanderstown Rd. to it’s end and take at right
on Bryson City Rd.
- Continue on Bryson City Rd. until you see Cowee Baptist Church take the second
road on right after church(Cowee Creek Rd.) go 2 miles when you come to Y in
road bare left on Leatherman Gap Rd- We are ¼ mile on Right after Y.
From Georgia State Line(from Rabun County GA.)
- North on 441, follow 441 into Franklin NC.
- As you come into Franklin you will see our McDonalds on
left at 1st traffic light go straight
- At 2nd light go thru baring slightly left
- At 3rd light go straight until you reach top of hill and
take a right
- At 4th light take Left on Hwy 28 North.
- Go 71/2 miles you will see on your left Cowee Baptist Church,
take a right on Cowee Creek Rd.(second road on right after
- Go about 2 miles when you come to Y in the road bare left
on Leatherman Gap rd.
- We are ¼ mile on Right after Y.