The Rivers of Color garden features towering tropical plants this year. JAN DONA/L&C Marketing & PR
The Rivers of Color garden features towering tropical plants this year. JAN DONA/L&C Marketing & PR

GODFREY – Lewis and Clark Community College’s Monticello Sculpture Gardens are bursting with colorful blooms and whimsical gardens for this summer’s curated garden show, “Cultivate Your Dreams at LC.”

“Gardens as well as education are pivotal in our communities and Lewis and Clark embraces both,” said Horticulturist and Garden Designer Katie Piper.

The show-stopping Godfrey campus is home to historic architecture that serves as a backdrop to acres of manicured landscapes featuring monumental sculptures from world renowned artists. Nestled throughout campus are annually planted garden beds that feature season long blooms and displays brought to life by campus horticulturists.

“This season, the garden displays acknowledge the important connection between nature and learning and range from interpretations of what a dream may look like in garden form and the literal formation of nutrition that can be grown to promote a healthy body and mind needed to cultivate one’s dreams in life,” Piper said.

To some, a dream garden may be a wildflower field or a prairie, she said. The containers in the Grove, surrounded by patio seating, host many small pollinator wildflower gardens. Each container garden is packed with annuals that are attractive to pollinators and looks like a flower field with plants of all heights and colors intertwining to give the impression that nature, not human hands, planted them. As visitors enjoy the patio, they will witness many butterflies, insects and hummingbirds stopping at the blooms, becoming part of the display.

The L&C Welding Technology department created garden orbs that add a surreal feel to the dreamlike garden outside the Hatheway Cultural Center’s main entrance.

“This garden does not rely on blooming plants to create an imaginative scene, but instead holds many common houseplants in varying shades of green to encourage new ways of using plant material in the landscape,” Piper said.

A discovery garden is in the Bosque, also outside Hatheway, and is a space for interaction and education. The plants contained within its walls are edible, medicinal, heavily scented or pigmented.

“This space will be used to educate groups on herb drying, botanical dyes, and the benefits of vegetable gardens,” Piper said. “Parts of these gardens are tended to by the College for Life gardening class and LC Garden Club.”

Always a favorite, the Living Wall is the perfect spot to check out numerous begonia varieties and get some group photos or selfies. There is also a large tropical plant display in the Rivers of Color garden, reaching higher into the sky as the summer goes on.

The Monticello Sculpture Gardens is also offering a College for Kids Creative Gardener Camp during the last weeks of June and July for all young budding garden artists. June’s camp is underway currently, but registration is still open for the July camp, which will feature activities and art created in the gardens while campers learn about plants and nature. To sign up a camper, visit

These and many other gardens are looking to be explored at L&C. The gardens are available for self-guided tours at any time – maps are free and will be located at the Campus Security Building at the Godfrey Campus’ north entrance.

Free group tours are available by request, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Contact Horticulture Manager Ethan Braasch at or Piper at to schedule.

Related Posts

LC 2nd Annual Summerfest Draws More than 1200

NGRREC Presents Annual NSF REU Symposium with SIUE

LC Inviting Community to Celebrate Summerfest

LC Welcomes Vendors to Participate in Annual Summerfest

Contact Us