Lakeside Commons Educational Gardens

Lakeside Commons was developed as an educational garden for hands-on interactive learning for all citizens in Campbell County and neighboring Greater Cincinnati. 

Plants and growing techniques utilized in the gardens are based on research conducted at one of the top land grand institutions in the country, the University of Kentucky.

The University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service provides  horticultural support service throughout the state to its citizens with the aid of its knowledgeable County Cooperative Extension Service staff.

Located on US 27 in Northern Kentucky, Lakeside Commons is minutes from Cincinnati in Highland Heights, Kentucky.  The temperate climate zone allows for a relatively long growing season and diverse plant life.  The first plantings of perennials and flower beds, grasses, a rose garden, perennial herbs and flowers, shrubs and other native plants and hardwood trees, began in 1995.

Friday's in the Garden Volunteers

Enjoy a stroll through meandering paths next to the lake at Lakeside Commons.  Pause on a bench and reflect on natures bounty and beauty.  Seasonal annuals and perennials can be evaluated in 28 irrigated raised beds.  Accessible beds contain flowers and vegetables cultivated and harvested by volunteers.  Over 1,000 woody plants are labeled for identification, and a fruit orchard was planted in 2000.  Large rose and flower beds contain over 600 cultivars of plants.  There is no better place to learn about the many plants suitable for growing in our area than at Lakeside Commons Educational Gardens.

History

In the fall of 1995, the Campbell County Extension District Board proposed to the fiscal court the development of an educational garden on the 3-acre site which adjoins the Extension Service building.  

Over the next two years, plans were developed by the 40 Campbell County residents serving on a task force.  Membership of the task force featured a diverse geographic and socioeconomic mix of county residents.  The task force was lead through the design process by Human Nature, Inc., a landscape architectural design firm.  

Ground was broken for Phase One of the gardens in the spring of 1999.  Construction was completed in the fall of 1999.  Naming of the gardens was an effort involving all sponsoring entities and the task force.  Lakeside Commons Educational Gardens was decided upon to emphasize the true intent of the gardens:  EDUCATION.

Education and Recreation

The gardens are used by the Campbell County Extension Service to teach hands-on horticulture.  Field trips and tours can be scheduled for school and other groups.  Workshops are given throughout the year.  Master Gardener classes are offered in cooperation with Boone and Kenton counties, the Northern Kentucky Master Gardener Association and the University of Kentucky.

Volunteer Opportunities

The gardens could not function without the help of a large group of dedicated volunteers.  Many of these volunteers are Master Gardeners.  The Northern Kentucky Master Gardener Program continues to be instrumental in the success of the Lake Commons Educational Gardens.

Anyone interested in volunteering at the gardens or becoming a Master Gardener should contact the Campbell County Extension office at: 3500 Alexandria Pike, Highland Heights, KY   41076

(859) 572-2600 Fax (859) 572-2619