Tour 1 Gardens
Hidden Hill Sculpture Gardens
Hidden Hill Sculpture Gardens is a unique mini-arboretum, sculpture gallery, and unusual plant garden in Utica, Indiana. Unique among all gardens in the Louisville area, the award-winning Hidden Hill has grown over 20 years into eight acres of flowers, shrubs, trees, and garden art and whimsy—and not necessarily in that order.
Owners Bob and Janet Hill began Hidden Hill with a typical gardening concept; plant one of everything. While having backed off slightly, the Hills still have about a dozen distinct garden rooms, a meadow, ponds, woods, butterflies, flowered allee, tropical area, a well-stocked barn of garden art, the world’s only Smile Garden, and a chicken coop with tin chickens. Hidden Hill mixes shaded sitting areas, bright sunny spots, and a central garden with a bubbling fountain. There’s a surprise around every corner.
Sue Grafton, the alphabet mystery series author, and her husband, Steven Humphrey, purchased this beautiful home and gardens in 2000. Encompassing nearly 30 acres, Lincliff was the former estate of hardware mogul William Belknap. The home, built in 1911, is situated along the Ohio River and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The gardens are formal in design, which complement the Georgian Revival style home.
Steve had access to the original plans and used them to guide the restoration of the gardens. Besides the tailored gardens on the property, he also grows edibles such as potatoes, asparagus, and an assortment of berries.
Steve discovered that John Olmsted, nephew of Frederick Law Olmsted (designer of Central Park in New York and numerous parks in Louisville), designed the original residential layout. Landscape architect Bryant Fleming, designer of Nashville's Cheekwood Estate, created today’s gardens.
Falls of the Ohio
There is no other place like it. The park features the largest exposed Devonian fossil bed in the world and is part of a 1,404-acre National Wildlife Conservation Area, perched on a small bluff overlooking the Ohio River. The state-of-the-art interactive Interpretive Center brings to life the story of the 390-million- year-old fossil bed, once covered by a shallow tropical sea located some 30 degrees south of the equator.
The Falls connects the environment of the ancient past with the natural and cultural history of yesterday and today. This is a place for lovers of fossils, wildlife, and history. Of historical note, on October 26, 1803, Lewis and Clark’s “Corps of Discovery” departed from the Falls of the Ohio on its journey to the Pacific Ocean to explore the American West.
Time will be spent in the exhibit gallery. Water levels permitting, volunteers will take groups out on the fossil beds and show them the diverse specimens.
The Sunnyside Master Gardener partnership with the Falls began in 1999 with landscaping around the flag pole at the Interpretive Center and has expanded to include three other areas in front of the Center.