Just 12 miles from Salem, Silverton is a city in the Marion County in Oregon. The city owes its name to the Silver Creek that flows through the city before joining the Willamette River. The original name for the city was Milford. They changed it to Silver Creek first before finalizing on the present one on July 16, 1855.
Silverton lies in the fertile plains of the Willamette River basin. In the olden times, the Kalapuya and the Molalla people inhabited the area. These people were expert farmers who made this area fertile. Farming was the main occupation of the people in this region. Located at 200 to 250 feet above sea level, the city has the Waldo Hills to the South. The area used to witness prehistoric floods frequently thereby aiding in making the land extremely fertile for agriculture.
Until the last decade of the 19th century, this area was an extremely a wooded area. In the year 1888, they cleared the area and started developing the state park. There were many waterfalls in the area. The main construction of the state park started during the Presidency period of Franklin D Roosevelt.
They conceived the plan for the creation of a botanical garden in the city, long back in the 1940s. However, due to the paucity of funds, the project never took any concrete shape. The struggle for finance continues even today. The main source of funds for the botanical garden today is from the proceeds of the Oregon lottery.
Located in Silverton, the 80-acre botanical garden is a popular and educational destination for all ages. The Oregon Garden is open 365 days a year. May - September from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., October - April from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Silver Falls State Park
The largest state park in Oregon, Silver Falls is just about 20 miles from Salem. This park has ten waterfalls that give the park the name. The state has a number of waterfalls and botanical gardens, out of which Oregon Garden is one. Conceived in the 1940s, the plan took wings in the 1990s. This 80-acre botanical garden opened to the public on April 17, 1999.