Changes at Bernheim Forest said to make it more inclusive

By Amy Joseph Landon

Source: WDRB
By Christie Battista
September 5, 2021

Flowers at Bernheim Forest

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — It’s something we were taught at a young age, but how often do you really sit and appreciate your senses?

There’s a special place at Bernheim Forest to do just that. They’re renovating their sensory garden to make it more inclusive.

When you walk through Bernheim Forest, you usually know what to expect.

“Bernheim’s my favorite thing about Bernheim,” the director of horticulture and sustainable landscapes Renee Frith said while laughing.

She said they’re doing everything they can to make sure everyone can enjoy it.

“What this allows everyone to do is have their own unique experience regardless of any, maybe some mobility challenges or disabilities that they may have personally,” Frith said.

Come springtime, you won’t just be looking at the flowers.

“All of these plants are gonna be able to rotate, so what you see here may not always be here,” she explained. “It’s gonna be ever changing and evolving just like life itself.”

You’ll be able to smell the flowers, touch pieces of driftwood and immerse yourself in the sounds.

“We’re getting in more plants that have those sensory, tactile, touch features,” Frith said. “We’re gonna bring a little bit of our edible garden over to this space which is super exciting.”

Their hope is to make things at Bernheim a little more inclusive.

“It’s eye-opening, you know, you think that you’re inclusive yourself and then when you start talking to other partners and other organizations that focus and really hone in on particular challenges, you realize there’s more that I can learn and there’s a bigger accessibility need than just what we currently have here at Bernheim,” Frith explained.

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