- Stroll through the Bible Garden and find a peaceful respite from life's hectic pace
- Breathe the aroma of a new flower or herb around every corner
- Listen as the birds chirp their greetings; take a copy of the brochure "Birds of Shepherd's Cross" for bird watching
- Enjoy a snack or picnic lunch in the Bible Garden
- Over 100 placards in the Garden, relate the plants to the Bible
Garden Tours Available:
1. Self Guided
- Enjoy the English Country Garden, read the placards, carry the hand book as a reference and/or listen to a pre-recorded audio tour (book & audio available by request at the desk)
- Donation based
- Enjoy the Bible Garden with a tour guide directing the way
- Donation based (suggested $5 per person)
- Guided Bible Garden Tour with a tour guide directing the way
- Take home DIY planting activity; seasonal plants
- $7 per person - must be pre-scheduled
This Biblically-based garden is nestled in the yard surrounding a reproduction of the original 1920’s farm home. The Dickinson family moved to the farm in 1991, and immediately began gardening. The first vegetable garden was producing fruit even before the family officially moved in. At that time, there were no garden beds, the home was simply nestled among some well established maples and elms that grace the garden to this day. The garden now features over 100 plants on placard.
The ornamental English Country style beds that surround the home were the original inspiration of landscape architect William Dickinson, Peter’s brother. At the time of the renderings, William was living in England. He drew the plans for the garden as a Christmas gift for the family. Included with the drawings in the Christmas package was a book about Bible Gardens. Thus the “seed” was planted and the inspiration to develop a Biblically-based garden at Shepherd’s Cross began.
The garden has truly been a labor of love, and has not been an “instant” garden by any means. The garden was established on a tight budget, primarily using purchased bare root plants and seeds, as well as tubers and bulbs exchanged with friends. After decades of tender love and care, the garden has taken shape. Many of the beds are flanked by classic English Country hedges. There is a mingling of the ordered, well shaped trees and shrubs with the freeness of natural, carefree flowers, herbs and vegetables.
There are only a handful of Bible gardens in the U.S., most of which include plants that are native only to the Holy Land. In contrast, the Bible Garden at Shepherd’s Cross, grows types of plants referenced either in the Bible, or in Biblical legends. Plants in the garden have been chosen for their ability to thrive in Oklahoma’s climate, and are representative of Holy Land varieties, Over one hundred plants in the garden have Bible references on placards, in the Bible Garden Book, and on the audio tour. A copy of the Bible Garden Book is available in the gift shop or on Amazon. After visiting the garden, the Dickinson's hope that gardeners will recall the Biblical references and be inspired as they labor in their own gardens, or view other local gardens.
An additional feature that adds to the English Country flair is the oak hedge which serves as a fence along the half mile of road frontage, as well as along the drive to the home. This hedge was planted using bare root Shumard oaks, and is now, after two or three decades, nearly completely established. Hedgerows such as these are commonly used in rural Europe for fences and also provide a natural habitat for wildlife.
Visit the Bible Garden at Shepherd’s Cross and enjoy a peaceful respite in the country, listen to the birds, and watch the lambs leap for joy in the pasture. Come and spend the day learning more about what Genesis I means when it says “God made the plants.”
Plants are very seasonal. Not all are available to view all year round, however the signs will indicate where the plant would be if it were in season.