Prescott Park, Portsmouth, NH
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Prescott Park is owned and managed by the City of Portsmouth, NH, and is located on the banks of the Piscataqua River, about 6 blocks from downtown and the Market Square. The Park is partially funded by the Josie F. Prescott Trust, which is administered by the Trustees of Trust Funds of the City of Portsmouth.

The Park grounds are comprised of over ten acres of riverside lawns, gardens and walkways, three boardwalk piers, two public docking areas with space for up to 26 vessels, and an island with picnic tables, shelters and grills. Prescott Park is open to the public year-round.

No fee is charged to enter the Park, enjoy the gardens, or use the picnic facilities on Four Tree Island. However, there is a fee for using the docking facilities, as well as for wedding ceremonies held in the Park.

Prescott Park Formal Garden in May
Formal Gardens in Prescott Park

The Formal Gardens were the first garden area to be developed at Prescott Park, dating to the mid-1960s. Artists and photographers are frequently to be seen at work along the brick paths that circle the three display fountains, eight Japanese crabapple trees, and annual and perennial beds. White bench seating lines the perimeter for a quiet visit in the gardens. This is also a popular spot for wedding and engagement photos.

Please use the City of Portsmouth Wedding Policy page to inquire about wedding reservations.

The formerly-named Trial Gardens, now display gardens, are a large area of rectangular beds on the south side of the park. In 1975, a collaboration was begun between Prescott Park and the University of New Hampshire. Under the guidance of the UNH Extension Specialist, nearly 40 garden beds were developed with partial maintenance provided by students as part of their course of studies. Though the program was eventually retired, Park staff continue to plant and maintain the area. The display is intended to show varieties and colors of annuals, and a few perennials, that are easily grown in the Seacoast area. Enjoy the display, but please, no picking or clipping plant material!

Trial Gardens in Prescott Park
Prescott Park Awards Hippo Press Best Of 2014 Seacoast Media Readers Choice 2014 Yankee Magazine Best 2013 Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence 2014

AWARD-WINNING!! In 2014, Prescott Park was voted “Best City Park” in the Seacoast area by Hippo Press Readers Picks, “Best Place for a First Date” by Seacoast Media Group Readers’ Choice, and was honored with a Certificate of Excellence by Trip Advisor!! In addition, in 2013, Yankee Magazine awarded Prescott Park with an Editor’s Choice Best in New England designation.

Some of the fine local and regional growers that supply the flowers and plants of Prescott Park are listed below.

Prescott Park Plant Suppliers 2017 Birchwood Farms Piscataqua Landscaping D.S. Cole Growers Pleasant View Gardens UNH Thompson School of Horticulture

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page updated 29 July 2018
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