Patty Jischke Children’s Garden

outdoors in summer with blue and purple flowers and the Children's Garden sign

Garden Features & Mission

With agriculture as its theme, the Children’s Garden contains elements reminiscent of Iowa’s agricultural heritage. Features include a hideout, a maze, tumbling mounds, a butterfly bench, and a stock tank with hand pumps to squirt water at unsuspecting friends. Hangout in the amphitheater that often features youth programs. Or walk through the covered bridge and say, “Hello” to the bronzed sculpture “Shep”, the barnyard dog. Remember to rub Shep’s nose for good luck!







North Buffer

A woody buffer between the Children’s Garden and South Field, to showcase trees with interesting leaves and bark.

Garden features: mixed planting bed, shaded area

Prominent plants: Fox Valley Birch


Class of 2000 Scarecrow Garden

Colorful annual plantings bring our yearly theme to the Children’s Garden.

Garden features: annual plants, raised bed, open lawn, water feature


Amphitheater & Plaza

Tiered outdoor seating surrounded by a wild pollinator garden.

Garden features: Corn Crib, Kaleidoscope, native plants, annual containers

Prominent plants: Flame Willow, Buttonbush


Stream Garden

A covered bridge crosses the shallow streambed, allowing play both in and above the water.

Garden features: Wading Stream, Frog fountains, covered bridge


Evelyn G. Stempel Maze Garden

Lose yourself in the tall grasses and prairie plants that surround the raised woden path.

Garden features: Maze, Native plants, boardwalk

Prominent plants: Queen of the Prairie, Arborvitae


South Buffer

The open lawn of the South Buffer gives our younger guests a place to run, chase, and tumble.

Garden features: tumbling mounds, Shep, Hideout, open lawn

Prominent plants: Chinkapin Oaks