Gardening

Gardening cultivates an enduring relationship with nature. Working with plants provides a hands-on opportunity to interact with and develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the natural world around us. Five Rivers MetroParks facilities offer inspiration for every gardener and gardening style. Our wide array of gardening programs can teach you how to plan, plant and take care of your garden using earth-friendly gardening methods. Using these earth-friendly methods to garden supports Five Rivers MetroParks conservation efforts and our local biodiversity in your own backyard. What are you waiting for? Get growing.

Featured Locations

Aullwood Garden Wildflowers and Woodland Gardens

955 Aullwood Rd., Englewood, OH 45414 Directions >

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Aullwood Garden represents not only a lifetime of planning and careful landscaping but also the ease of blending wildflowers into a traditional landscape setting. In the early 20th century, John and Marie Aull spent weekends searching the countryside for flowers that they could bring to and grow in gardens along the woodlands and stream terraces. They planted several varieties, from hepaticas to Dutchman’s breeches to celandine poppies. They carefully placed thousands of daffodils, Virginia bluebells, spring aconites, hellebores, hostas and old-fashioned hyacinths in the rich, woodland soil. Be inspired and transformed by a visit to this special garden.

Cox Arboretum Pollinator Gardens

6733 Springboro Pike, Dayton, OH 45449 Directions >

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Want birds, bees and butterflies to dance in your garden? Visit the pollinator gardens outside of Cox Arboretum’s Butterfly House to learn about pollinator-friendly plants and get ideas to make your backyard more pollinator-friendly. Supporting these winged creatures not only adds beauty, it will make your garden more productive.

Wegerzyn’s Gardens Formal Gardens

1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave., Dayton, OH 45414 Directions >

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Home gardeners seeking a more refined landscape will find a wealth of design ideas, wonderful plants and cultivation techniques suitable for our region at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark. Be inspired by the unique and beautiful combinations of annuals and perennials scattered throughout the grounds. Every season has something to offer!

Possum Creek Prairie

4790 Frytown Rd., Dayton, OH 45417 Directions >

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The prairie at Possum Creek is an important part of Ohio’s native landscape and one that MetroParks actively preserves. It is home to plants that are seldom found in other habitats, including wildflowers such as coneflower, dense blazingstar, sawtooth sunflower, prairie dock and spiderwort. Prairies like the one at Possum Creek provide rare native habitat for birds, butterflies, insects, reptiles and other small wildlife; yet, prairies require little maintenance and are long-lasting. Do you have a room for a little prairie in your yard?

Specialty Gardens at Cox Arboretum

6733 Springboro Pike, Dayton, OH 45449 Directions >

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Learn to make sustainable plant choices by visiting the specialty gardens at Cox Arboretum. From the stonewall perennials to the rock and water gardens, there is inspiration for every gardener to discover. Learn to which plants to select—large and small—for your garden and which ones require minimal upkeep and provide maximum impact for environmental health. 

Urban Landscaping at RiverScape

237 E. Monument Ave., Dayton, OH 45402 Directions >

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RiverScape is a beautiful garden that includes hanging baskets, life-size flower pots and beds overflowing with annuals, perennials, and tropical plants. Many of the plants are labeled with botanical and common names so that you can take note of which plants you might want for your own home garden. Urban dwellers with small living spaces have specific landscaping requirements and limitations.  Get inspiration and guidance from the plantings at RiverScape and across the pedestrian bridge at Deed’s Point.

Trees and Shrubs at Cox Arboretum

6733 Springboro Pike, Dayton, OH 45449 Directions >

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The trees and shrubs throughout Cox Arboretum allow home gardeners to evaluate the growth and flowering habits, fall colors, and winter character of hundreds of different trees and shrubs. Come discover the beautiful shrubs best suited to our climate and soils. Most species are tagged so visitors can identify species they might want in their own yard.

Children's Discovery Garden

1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave., Dayton, OH 45414 Directions >

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Designed as a child-friendly place to discover, experience and love our world through gardening, the Children’s Discovery Garden at Wegerzyn contains habitat areas and whimsical themed gardens for children and their adult companions to explore together. Visit often to see the gardens grow and change.

 

2nd Street Market

600 E. Second St., Dayton, OH 45402 Directions >

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A trip to the 2nd Street Market is fun for everyone, but especially for those who appreciate talking to the gardeners and farmers who grow the food and plants for sale at this bustling local gathering spot. From the inspirational landscape displays outside to the wealth of fresh, local foods and sustainable products inside, the Market appeals to the earth-lover in us all.  In spring and summer, visitors will find a wide selection of garden plants from local growers. You can also support the Wegerzyn Gardens Foundation by shopping in its booth year-round.

Barbara Cox Center for Sustainable Horticulture

6733 Springboro Pike, Dayton, OH 45449 Directions >

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The Barbara Cox Center for Sustainable Horticulture engages the community with opportunities for experiential learning about sustainability and horticulture to improve quality of life and to effect positive change in the world. This working facility showcases methods for growing plants critical for maintaining your MetroParks, from trees to prairie plants. Stop by and get your hands dirty!

Seasonal Gardening Inspiration at Your MetroParks

Visit Five Rivers MetroParks’ beautiful gardens throughout the year for ideas about what and how to plant and build your landscape.

Getting started

Signing up for an instructional program is a great way to get started in local gardening. Five Rivers MetroParks offers programs for a variety of gardening, designed to build familiarity with plants suitable for growing in our region.

Programs & Events

Outdoor Farmers' Market at the 2nd Street Market

Each Saturday through October!

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Enjoy the best of in-season, locally grown vegetables, herbs and bedding plants brought to the Market straight from the field at the annual summer outdoor Farmers’ Market. Conventional and organic farmers will participate every Saturday.

Learn more about the Market.

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Resources

Helpful links to enhance your gardening experience

Local Clubs and Groups

Do it at Home

  • Our classes and parks provide a great start or continuation to your home garden or landscape

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