Lendonwood Gardens was founded in 1995 by Dr. Leonard Miller, a retired dentist in Grove, who designed and built the botanical garden that now attracts numerous visitors each year. Dr. Miller’s interest in Japanese gardening and horticulture resulted in a unique blend of American and Asian gardening cultures at Lendonwood. The major plantings took about 18 months to complete, but significant numbers of plants are added each year as the Gardens evolve.
The Gardens became a non-profit corporation, Lendonwood Gardens, Inc., in January 1997, when Dr. Miller donated the property for operation by the corporation.
The corporation by-laws state that the purpose of the gardens is to: Provide a non-profit, educational, scientific association for the public to stimulate activity and bring together those persons interested in gardening and botanical research; Provide horticultural information to members and the general public; Assist the members and the general public in botanical gardening and research; Assist beginners in organizing their botanical gardening efforts.
In December 2001, Lendonwood Gardens, Inc., purchased adjacent land and property from Dr. Miller to enhance the Gardens’ plantings and educational services. The adjacent five acres, which included Dr. Miller’s former home and surrounding gardens, allowed room for significantly expanded garden space and eventually may be used to help resolve some parking and visibility issues.
Also, located in this area of the Gardens is the Angel of Hope statue, placed here to commemorate lost loved ones, especially children. An annual memorial service is held at the statue on December 6.