CLS: Lakeside Gardening Experience

This week, Lakeside Chautauqua, a 2023 America in Bloom winner, welcomes an array of speakers on topics ranging from tree preservation and planting native gardens to nature-based therapies and ecopsychology.

Cory Christopher

Monday, July 29, 10:30 a.m. | Orchestra Hall
“Resilient by Nature: Tourette’s, Trees and Trauma”

This is a first-hand account of the healing power of nature. In this presentation, a plant ecologist recounts his experiences growing up as the “neuro-spicy” son of an abusive southern Baptist preacher in deep south Appalachia, and how the natural world outside his home gave him the security and support he needed to survive and thrive. Told from a scientific but deeply personal perspective, Dr. Cory Christopher will discuss how time spent outdoors reduces anxiety, speeds healing and helps victims of trauma build resiliency. He will offer his own ecological testimony explaining how his time amongst trees and trillium continues to sustain his spirit despite a difficult and traumatic childhood.

Christopher is Director of Conservation at the Cincinnati Nature Center. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in ecology from the University of Georgia and a PhD in plant ecology from the University of Cincinnati. After completing post-doctoral work at Washington University in St. Louis, he returned to Cincinnati to serve as graduate and school programs manager for the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. Before coming to the Cincinnati Nature Center, Christopher worked for the University of Cincinnati as Director of UC Forward, facilitating collaborative community action projects. He also served as the university’s director of undergraduate research. As director of conservation, Christopher pulls from these academic and professional experiences to facilitate collaborative conservation efforts aimed at protecting native ecosystems across the Cincinnati/Tri-State region.

Lakeside Garden Tour

Monday, July 29, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | Lakeside Grounds
Guests and residents are invited to experience these landscapes on a self-guided Garden Tour. Maps of featured gardens will be available at all Lakeside gate entrances, the Fountain Inn and Hotel Lakeside front desks, and the Lakeside Chautauqua Administration Office on the day of the event for tour attendees to explore on their own.

Chelsea Gottfried

Tuesday, July 30, 10:30 a.m. | Orchestra Hall
“Title TBA”

Keynote: Nick McCullough

Tuesday, July 30, 8 p.m. | Hoover Auditorium
Nick McCullough, author and owner of McCullough’s Landscape & Nursery in New Albany, Ohio, will serve as Keynote Speaker. Follow his journey across the country and take a closer look at gardens that McCullough captured on his quest to celebrate the American garden in his first book American Roots, co-authored with his wife, Allison, and Teresa Woodard, which has recently been published by Timber Press. Explore a selection of landscapes created by 20 creative gardeners across our vast land from Big Sur, California, to the shores of Rhode Island. Gain inspiration, planting tips and an expanded notion of what an American garden is.

Catherine Zimmerman

Wednesday, July 31, 10:30 a.m. | Orchestra Hall
“Habitat Heroes, Making Natural Landscaping the New Landscaping Norm”

Before manicured lawns, with chemicals, mowers and blowers, there were ecological meadows with butterflies, birds and bees. In this lecture, Catherine Zimmerman looks at the growing movement to reduce over 48 million acres of thirsty, pesticide ridden and energy consuming lawns. Included are clips from her film, “Hometown Habitat,” which makes the connection that planting diversity building native plants, is at the core of reclaiming critical habitat for wildlife.

Catherine Zimmerman celebrates her 47th year as a documentary filmmaker, working primarily on environmental issues. She is also a certified horticulturist and landscape designer accredited in organic land care. In writing the book and producing the video, “Urban & Suburban Meadows,” Zimmerman created a stunning and enticing introduction to meadowscaping that will encourage her readers do away with pesticides, reduce lawn and return their land to a beautiful, natural habitat for native plants and wildlife. Her latest film release, “Hometown Habitat, Stories of Bringing Nature Home,” a collaboration with Dr. Douglas Tallamy, explores how and why native plants are critical to the survival and vitality of local eco-systems. Included are inspiring stories of habitat heroes across the countries, who are working to bring back nature in their hometowns. Catherine hopes that these projects will help fire up the movement toward making natural landscapes the new landscaping norm.

Ian Adams

Wednesday, July 31, 3:30-5:30 p.m. | Orchestra Hall
“Smartphone Landscape & Nature Photography Seminar”

This will be a 2-hour classroom seminar, based on Ian Adams’ eBook, iPhone Landscape & Nature Photography, which is described on the home page of his website: The participants should bring their iPhone or Android smartphone to the seminar, which will include a variety of hands-on smartphone exercises in the classroom. The 170-page eBook is normally available as a $14.99 PDF download from the Home Page of my website, but Adams will provide a 50% discount to the seminar participants if they wish to obtain a copy of the eBook.

Adams is an environmental photographer, writer and educator specializing in Ohio’s natural, rural, historical and garden areas. Twenty-three books of his color photography have been published, and he has produced more than 65 Ohio calendars and conducted over 200 seminars and workshops in nature, garden and digital photography throughout North America. He was an adjunct lecturer at Ohio State University’s Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster, Ohio, where he taught horticultural photography for 10 years.

Chris Ahlum

Thursday, Aug. 1, 10:30 a.m. | Orchestra Hall
Tree Walk

Delve into the nuances of basic and advanced tree care techniques tailored specifically for our region. From selecting the perfect species for your landscape to basic planting and pruning, Chris Ahlum will empower you with the knowledge and confidence to cultivate thriving urban forests right in your backyard. Chris will draw from his comprehensive book, The Guide to Ohio Trees: 40 Years, 40 Trees, to guide attendees through the essential steps of tree care, from the foundational principles of planting to the intricate art of pruning and more.

Chris Ahlum, President of Ahlum & Arbor Tree Preservation, is a second generation visionary arborist dedicated to fostering healthier urban forests. Ahlum’s passion for trees began at a young age, nurtured by his family’s love for tree preservation. Ahlum & Arbor has become a leading force in the industry thanks to Chris’s dedication to the company values of family, safety, ethics, quality, knowledge and reliability. His leadership and expertise have earned the company a reputation for excellence and exceptional safety standards, while his unwavering dedication to environmental stewardship drives innovative solutions for tree preservation. Ahlum’s legacy extends beyond business success; it lies in the green landscapes he helps protect and the communities he enriches through his work.

Thursday, Aug. 1, 3:30 p.m. | Starting point TBD
“Ohio Trees: Roots to Canopies”

Take a guided stroll with Chris Ahlum to explore our community’s heritage trees. Discover the strengths and weaknesses of different trees and dive deeper into the essentials of tree care. Gain practical insights into nurturing these magnificent trees and learn about their significance in our landscape.

Barbara Walker

Friday, Aug. 2, 10:30 a.m. | Orchestra Hall
“The Mental & Physical Benefits of Living with Nature”

We all know how amazing being in nature can make us feel. The sounds of the birds singing, the breeze rustling in the leaves, the varying fragrances, the sunlight filtering through the branches and breathing in fresh air. It all gives us a sense of comfort, eases our stress and worry, and helps us relax and think more clearly.

Being in nature restores our mood, gives us back our energy and vitality, and refreshes and rejuvenates us.

The belief in the benefits of spending time in nature stretches back thousands of years, but it has only been in the last few decades that scientists and researchers have begun to understand the complex relationships between our natural environment and our health, providing additional support for the need to protect nature and our planet.

There is strong evidence that spending time in nature is beneficial for various aspects of our mental and physical well-being, providing stress relief, reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression, and improving mood, blood pressure and immune functioning.

Remember that what is good for the mind is good for the body and is good for our planet.

This lecture is a brief introduction to the healing power of nature. Barbara Walker hopes that you will feel and have a deeper understanding of this healing and choose to integrate more nature into your routine.


Jul 29, 2024 - Aug 02, 2024



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