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June 28: International Peace Garden’s Floral Clock

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Visitors to the International Peace Garden can see thousands of colorful flowers and symbols of peace and unity along the border of the U-S and Canada. It’s located north of Dunseith, North Dakota. The Peace Garden’s site was formally dedicated in 1932. Tens of thousands of people attended. The dedication included speeches from officials from both countries, a sports program, and the unveiling of a commemorative cairn placed on the international border.

One of the garden’s most decorative features came over 30 years later. On this date in 1966, Bismarck Tribune readers learned of the latest addition to the Peace Garden: a large clock gifted from the Bulova Watch Company. But not just any clock – its face is made of flowers. The Associated Press reported that the clock replicated one at Bulova’s headquarters in Switzerland. According to the AP’s story, flower plantings would decorate the clock’s 18-foot face starting May 1st every year.

Other gifts to the Peace Garden in 1966 included 1,100 roses from the Jackson & Perkins Company of New York, and $10,000 from the Knights of Columbus toward an outdoor theatre shell.

By the spring of 1967, the floral clock’s wiring was completed and its first plantings were ready. The clockface bedding required 3,500 plants. The Peace Garden saw other major projects that year, including the Errick Willis Pavilion, a 100-bed dormitory, and additions to the amphitheater. Peace Garden officials estimated that by September more than 200,000 people had visited the garden that year.

In 2005, the floral clock was replaced with one from St. Louis, Missouri. Its design changes every year. The clock is on the North Dakota side of the border, near the entrance to the Peace Garden.

Dakota Datebook by Jack Dura


  • The Bismarck Tribune. 1932, July 13. Page 2: Two nations will dedicate peace garden Thursday
  • The Bismarck Tribune. 1932, July 14. Page 1: Pledge of peace is made at exercises
  • The Bismarck Tribune. 1932, July 15. Pages 1, 9: Natural monument of peace unveiled at park ceremony
  • The Bismarck Tribune. 1966, June 28. Page 17: Peace garden gets clock of flowers
  • The Brandon Sun. 1966, September 12. Page 2: Story of growth again at garden
  • The Brandon Sun. 1967, April 24. Page 2: Many Peace Garden improvements bared
  • The Brandon Sun. 1967, September 15. Page 1: Peace Garden reports good year
  • International Peace Garden. (no date). The floral clock. Retrieved from: peacegarden.com/project/the-floral-clock/

Dakota Datebook is made in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, and funded by Humanities North Dakota, a nonprofit, independent state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the program do not necessarily reflect those of Humanities North Dakota or the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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