This Week's Podcast: Athens of the West
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Richard Weber, a landscape architect and owner of Springhouse Gardens – a nursery and design business -- is our guide this week to places to visit in Lexington, KY. Richard was honored for the second time in a row with a 2010 Landscape Design Award from the Perennial Plant Association
When European settlers arrived on the scene, the “Bluegrass” region was in use as a hunting ground for numerous Native American tribes. Daniel Boone was one of the first Anglo-Saxons to explore the area, and established Kentucky's first forts in Harrodsburg and Boonesborough.
Lexington, named for the first battle of the American Revolution in Lexington, MA, was founded in 1775. By 1820, Lexington, KY, was one of the largest and wealthiest towns west of the Allegheny Mountains -- nicknamed the "Athens of the West." Several institutions of higher learning are in town, including Transylvania University and the University of Kentucky.
The young Lexington Arboretum includes many attractions including a 2.2 mile horticultural "Walk Across Kentucky" with over 1,000 trees and shrubs gathered from the State’s five geophysical regions. The new Children’s Garden is one of the best I’ve seen.
The Lexington Cemetery is also an arboretum with gardens and 200 species of trees including an historic American linden that was growing when the U.S. Constitution was adopted in 1787.
Keeneland Race Course, minutes from downtown, is arguably the most beautiful track in the world and has served as a location for several motion pictures.