There are Huge Animal Plant Sculptures at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo This Summer

The zoo’s new WildScapes experience features 10 larger-than-life animal topiaries depicting a tiger, snake, giraffe and more.

Photograph courtesy of the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo.

It’s true that you go to the zoo to see the animals. But this summer at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo, some of the most spectacular animals you’ll see are made of plants. From now through to mid-September, when you make your way through the zoo gardens, you’ll be wowed by WildScapes, featuring 10 larger-than-life animal topiaries. What does topiary mean, you ask? Topiary refers to the shaping of living trees and shrubs into decorative shapes — in this case, stunning animals.

Whether it’s the masterfully crafted roaring tiger, made up of a record number of 12,000 plants, the 24-foot-long winding snake created from 7,000 plants — including 12 different variations — or the sky-high 21-foot-tall giraffe with its baby, you won’t want to miss taking photos with these amazing plant creatures as backdrops. There are also a few smaller sculptures of animals like polar bears, a snail and a peacock.

Photograph by Colleen Seto

This is the only topiary display of its kind in Alberta, and unlike traditional topiaries, the WildScapes are colourful, intricate, living sculptures made from a mosaic of different flowers, succulents and other plant materials. Handcrafted by a renowned 3D plant mosaic business in Montreal, WildScapes offers a fun and elevated experience throughout the zoo including Dorothy Harvie Gardens, Asia Lawn and Grassy Knoll.

WildScapes is included with daily admission and memberships. For more information, visit

Want more suggestions for the best things to do in Calgary? Sign up for our Weekender Newsletter.

Related posts

5 Cool Spots to Check Out on Parkdale Crescent N.W.

Mofe Adeniran

Global and Local Talent Converge to Create Theatre Calgary’s Beaches the Musical


This New Canmore Hotel is Opening a Nordic Spa in 2025

Alana Willerton

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Privacy Policy

Privacy & Cookies Policy
Avenue Calgary