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Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden: A Hidden Jewel in Richmond, Virginia

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden: A Hidden Jewel in Richmond, Virginia

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By Elaine VonCannon, ABR, SRES, Associate Broker, Notary, Team Leader, Property Manager, Award Winning Agent

Did you know that one of the top gardens in the US; voted America's #4 public gardens by USA Today. Recognized by the Travel Channel as a best botanical garden is located in Richmond Virginia?

You can visit one of the Nation's Best Public Gardens. Open 9am-5pm. Conveniently Located. Fun For All Ages which features a 50 Acre Garden, Family Fun Events, Beautiful Year Round.

The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, is a botanical garden located at 1800 Lakeside Avenue, on the North Side of Richmond, Virginia. It includes the Lakeside Wheel Club built by Lewis Ginter and expanded and remodeled into Bloemendaal by his niece Grace Arents.

Lewis Ginter mission: is (1) to provide education to the community about the plant world, (2) promote the best in horticulture and landscape design and (3) work toward the goal of being a leader in botanical and applied horticultural research.

The Land is gently rolling terrain that is the site of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden was once the hunting ground of Powhatan Indians. Known to the Powhatan as "Oughnum" this name underwent a number of modifications beginning in 1690, when Nathaniel Bacon, president of the Council of Virginia, granted James Moore of New Kent County a patent for 573 acres (2.32 km2) on "Uffnum Brook."

The ever Expanding Wheel Club: Upon Ginter's return to Richmond, the Major began acquiring additional area on the northside. He created the Lakeside Wheel Club on the land he bought four years earlier. The clubhouse he built was a one-story Victorian structure surrounded on two sides by a covered veranda. The original concrete approach walks with their inlaid leaf patterns, the steps, concrete newel posts and wrought iron lamp standards remain today. The adjacent valley and waterways had long been the site of a millpond and were dammed to create Lakeside Lake. In the Gay Nineties cycling was a popular sport, and cyclists, cheered on by Richmond belles, peddled out to the Club on the cinder Missing Link Trail which ran along the Boulevard and Hermitage Road. Spectators of the cycling sport rode out on the Lakeside trolley and were discharged at the end of the line near the dam. After the grueling ride from town, cyclists could sit on the Wheel Club's long gallery and refresh themselves with homemade ice cream, while boaters drifted on the lake below. Earlier, north of the lake, Ginter has established Lakeside Park, with a zoo and Richmond's first professional nine-hole golf course. The granite base of the bear pit and many fine specimen trees planted in an arboretum setting remain the present day Jefferson Lakeside Club.