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Making the Switch to LED Lights

Tuesday, December 11th, 2018

At Gardens Aglow, we use LED lights in our designs be-decking our gardens and encourage others to use them, too. Not only do they last longer, they’re more reliable, more robust, far brighter, and far more energy efficient than their traditional counterparts. But with the upfront cost so much higher than the old incandescents, are they worth the investment?

How do LEDs work?

LED lights use light-emitting diodes (hence, LED), rather than filament to produce light. This technology is what gives LED lights all the efficiency props. They don’t burn out, nor do they get hot to the touch, which means they’re safe to use around your holiday trees, wreaths and garlands—indoors or out.

How much money and energy do LEDs save?

Incandescent bulbs release about 90% of their energy as heat. LEDs, on the other hand, remain cool to the touch and, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, use up to 75% less energy and last 25 times longer.
Since LED bulbs don’t burn out (they just get dimmer over time), you don’t have to replace bulbs and fuses. Just plug them in and, given that they’re properly used and stored, they should light up year after year. This low-energy usage means your holiday electric bill won’t climb sky high, even if (like us) you tend to go a bit crazy with your illuminated décor… (For example, the total KW for our 650,000 lights is 10 kWh. With a cost of 8 cents per kWh, the energy bill for an evening of Gardens Aglow is only $4.00, or $120 for the entirety of our 30-night run).

Recycling your lights:

When we decide to switch to the more durable, low fire-hazard, safer LEDs, we have to figure out what to do with our old household bulbs and holiday lights.
Rule number one: do not just carelessly throw them away. Twinkle lights, CFLs, fluorescent bulbs, and incandescents should be recycled. CFLs contain mercury, and if they are not properly discarded, they can release that mercury into the environment. Holiday light strands often contain lead, too, in the polyvinyl chloride (PVC) wire coverings—another chemical we don’t want leached into the environment.
Luckily for us, established light recycling programs know what to do with old, used, even broken lights. Not sure where to go? Both Home Depot and Lowe’s have collected Christmas lights for recycling. Check with your local store to see if it currently participates in these programs. Most True Value stores, too, will recycle CFL bulbs (but they charge $1/bulb…). Also, many home improvement stores offer trade-in programs, allowing you to turn in your old lights and receive a few dollars off of the newer, energy-efficient sets. Another great option is to check out Christmas Light Source (https://www.christmas-light-source.com/Christmas-Lights-Recycling-Program_c_210.html). They recycle lights all year round and donate recycling proceeds to buy educational books and toys which are donated to Toys for Tots.

Outdoor Lighting Tips

Friday, November 9th, 2018

Since getting outdoor lights evenly spaced—with all bulbs facing (more or less) in the same direction—during a Maine autumn is challenging to say the least, we thought we’d share some of our key designer, Anna Leavitt’s favorite tips.

1. Start small—choose key focal points, and begin by lighting just two or three items. Step back and see how that looks before adding new displays. Designer Anna Leavitt says, “The more intimate and secluded an area, try to keep it limited to only a few colors to avoid overwhelming the senses.”

2. Protect your trees— Avoid compacting the soil around trees with ladders and heavy boots, and avoid wrapping trunks and branches too tightly. If you damage your tree, especially in the winter, it’s much more susceptible to disease. Avoid nails, staples, screws or hooks. If your lights need securing, try electrical tape or clips like parapet clips instead, which are especially designed to mount holiday lights.

3. “Think about each area separately,” Leavitt continues. “I choose a different color theme for each area and within each there are certain ways to think about color. For example, the Children’s Garden is a little crazy and has lots of colors, whereas the Woodland Garden is kept to two or three main cohesive colors to create a more intimate space. Last year we tried red, orange, and yellow with accents of other colors. This year we’re going for blue, aqua, and purple.”

4. Imagine what you can see when standing in different spots in your yard. “In the winter with no trees on the leaves, and also at night with bright LEDs, you can see A LOT and FAR. The colors within a garden not only have to look good together, but they have to blend with the surrounding gardens, and each garden hopefully transitions nicely into the next. Think about the ground plane, foreground and background, height. Add dimension—think about both the horizontal and the vertical and consider ground covers like stake lighting or outlining paths and driveways.”

5. Avoid the temptation of overload—not only can you overload your circuits (unless, of course, you use LED lights), but you can overload your senses. Start small (see item 1) and go from there. Maybe even sleep on your display before adding to it. “And be sure to check it out after dark,” Leavitt advises. “That’s the best way to see if you have holes in your design.”

6. Think inside the box—besides trees, there are oodles of lighting options for the gardener. Have a window box? You can coil light strands on top of the soil, then plant small, hardy shrubs or insert branches (paint them white, gold, or silver for extra holiday oomph). In addition to window boxes, you can try the same trick with planters on your property. Cone trees—either store-bought or homemade—are also a good alternative to wrapping living trees and shrubs. Or if you have a birdbath in your yard, you can pile battery-lit globes or spheres in and around it for a variety of visuals. Alternatively, try twisting rope lighting into various shapes and hanging them from trees or your porch, creating snowflake-like shapes. Disguise the cord with ribbon, if you’d like.

7. When choosing trees to illuminate, deciduous trees are the easiest choice, since they’re easily accessible and the trunks and branches offer a striking silhouette. Opt for interesting trees, but also be sure to choose trees that are strong enough to withstand the weight of the lights in addition to the harsh weather conditions of winter. It might be needless to say, but don’t choose trees that come in contact with power lines.

8. Remember your budget—think about the circumference of a tree and how many times you’d need to wrap it. Plan and budget for every tree, shrub, or stone wall you want to wrap or drape.

9. Other materials—you need more than lights to create a magical (and safe) holiday display. You’ll want a sturdy ladder (and someone to spot you), gloves, lights, and clips (remember a staple gun and/or nails can damage a trunk). If you’re wrapping a tree with rugged bark, you probably won’t need anything to fasten the lights to the tree.

10. When wrapping, start from the base, and make sure it’s the visible base. That is, if your tree’s base is hidden by shrubs or stonework, begin at the visible line. Then, start wrapping and space your lines evenly. One easy way to ensure even spacing is to use four fingers between strands as you wrap. When wrapping branches, leave twice that much space so when you double-back, the spacing will stay consistent.

11. It probably could go without saying, but we’ll say it anyway—test your lights and the connections between your strands of lights.

12. Keep track: “I keep track of everything in an Excel spreadsheet, and it’s been updated over the years, so we know how many strands go on each tree or structure and we can keep track of what colors have been done in the past. I also note whether it can be done from the ground, a short ladder or a tall one, or the lift so that I know who—and how many—I need for each task,” Leavitt says.

Color Palettes & Combinations

Wednesday, November 7th, 2018

Since it sets the tone for the overall feel of your design, your color palette may be the most important decision you make when you begin your holiday lighting adventures. Color combinations involving red, white, and green typically feel more classic, while unexpected colors like teal or pink feel more whimsical. When selecting your color scheme, think about the scope of your area and try for cohesion, rather than an overwhelming display of color.

Schemes we use in the Gardens:
• All white (very simple and evocative of winter)
• Multicolor strands (cheerful and childlike)
• Purple and yellow (unexpected and enlivening)
• Two shades of the same color (i.e. we used two shades of pink on the big sugar maple last year)
• Red, orange, and yellow (a fiery burst of color in the midst of winter)
• Pink, warm white, aquamarine, and purple (quirky and frosty)
• White and green (an elegant statement on the season)
• Red and blue (fire and ice)
• Blue, purple, white, and aqua (joyous and reminiscent of brightly wrapped packages)

When it comes to wrapping your trees, your house, or setting up path lighting, you can choose from a variety of approaches.
Here are some we’ve tried in the Gardens:
• For an ombre effect, try stringing lights from dark to light, vertically.
• Choose your favorite color, and make that the dominant hue. Then, choose a complimentary color for your highlights.
• Try the 60-30-10 rule: 60% dominant color, 30% secondary, 10% accent if you’re covering a large amount of space.
• Or try the rule of three: limit your palette to just three colors for an organized, well-balanced design.

Crafting with Greenery

Friday, October 26th, 2018

Winter décor and evergreens seem to go hand in hand. Ever thought to wonder why? Besides the fact that evergreens are often the only sign of life in an otherwise cold, dormant world, they have long been a symbol of life and health. Filling our homes with fragrant pine boughs follows in the footsteps of ancient cultures—all over the world for thousands of years, green plants have been used in solstice celebrations.

Traditionally, the oil and resin of fir trees have been used for their antiseptic properties, and bringing boughs into the home can help freshen and disinfect the air, protecting against respiratory illness—an added bonus in the months when we find ourselves gathered in warm, close spaces. Winding evergreens into circlets or wreaths not only brings this breath of fresh air inside where it will be most appreciated, but the shape represents the circle of life—a potent symbol at the solstice celebrating the returning of the light.

Tempted to craft your own winter décor?

We mined CMBG horticulturist Diane Walden’s 30+ years’ experience for some tips for decorating with evergreens. Walden advises gathering what you can from your own backyard as well as from wild, public spaces. Living as we do in the Pine Tree State, this is a relatively easy task and ensures that the wreaths we make are sustainable and very local.

(photo by Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)

If this is a project you’d like to take on, start now, says Walden—the earlier the better. Look around your property before the snow comes and pick up any windfalls. Pine cones, branches, rosehips, dried flower heads, seed pods, lichen, moss and berries all make wonderful additions to your wreath. If you gather them now and hang them to dry, they’ll be ready for holiday crafting.

“You can definitely start scoping out potential cuts. For example, hydrangea is perfect to cut early—but it’s best to cut evergreens only after we’ve had three nights of below-freezing temperatures,” advises Walden.

(Photo by Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)

To make your wreath:

  • For easy assembly, build your wreath on a wire frame. A well-cared for frame can last you many years. You’ll also need floral wire for attaching your greens to the frame.
  • Gather roughly eight pounds of greenery, cut 6-8” in length.
  • Take three to five pieces of your plant material, securing them in what’s called a hand—think of it as a mini pine bouquet. “This is the building block of wreath-making,” says Walden. “The larger the wreath, the larger the hand. I typically do oversized hands that make for a shaggier, more wild, more natural wreath.”
  • Attach a hand to the frame by wrapping the lower 1/2-1/3 of the individual bundle three times with your wire and pull tight. After you tie one hand to the frame, tie the next one 2-3” from the last. Keep going, overlapping your hands, until your frame is full.
  • Walden suggests alternating hands of different greens or using hands made up of mixed greens—experiment to see what feels right.
  • Once your frame is full (and don’t worry about so-called “perfection” here), you can weave in your add-ons. Mix up your vegetation (rosemary makes a wonderful wreath addition, as does juniper, cedar, or holly). This is the time to add your dried branches, flowers, seed heads, nuts, berries, seashells, or even a favorite ornament or two. One addition, however, that Walden advises against? “Bittersweet—it’s invasive and I hate to promote an invasive plant like that.”
  • To make your wreath last all season, hang it in a cooler section of your house and mist it occasionally with water to avoid drying and dropped needles.
  • You can make your wreath one- or two-sided. “Rarely does one have to make a two-sided wreath,” notes Walden. “It’s all about where it’s going—is it going to hang on a wall or solid door? Then one-sided is all you need. If it’s hanging from a glass storm door by a hanger, and if you’re planning to leave the interior door open to view the wreath from both sides, only then would you really want a two-sided wreath.”
  • Want to tackle a two-sider? Then every time you tie a hand to your frame, flip your ring over and tie another to the back.

Further Ideas

If you’ve gathered an enormous amount of greenery (or you just want to keep crafting), try filling a decorative basket with evergreen boughs and some of your add-ins. Prop the basket on a table or hang it on your door or above the mantel. For a smaller-scale creation, try bouquets of greenery—glass or ceramic wall vases make perfect vehicles for your leftover boughs.

Still have some extras? Think outside the box(wood)—in lieu of a bow, greenery also makes great gift toppers.
And after the holidays? “Whip on some suet blocks and hang your wreath outside for the birds. When the greens become unsightly, unwind the floral wire to disassemble your wreath,” Walden advises. Greens can be composted or tossed into the woods to decompose naturally.
Happy crafting!

Squirrels and Lights

Thursday, October 18th, 2018

Squirrels are no strangers to us here at the Gardens. At any given moment, you can hear them chattering from the nearby woods or dashing across your path. We couldn’t give you an exact count, but our horticulturists estimate their numbers to be in the billions.
Okay. That might be an exaggeration.

Of course, few predators coupled with plenty of water, trees, acorns, and in the spring, tulip bulbs make CMBG the perfect place for squirrels to take up residence.

So why, with all this natural abundance, do they feel the need to feast on the lights we’ve so painstakingly hung for Gardens Aglow?

What we do know is that we’re not the only light show with this issue. Boston faces the perennial problem of squirrels causing outages in the holiday lights strung on the Boston Common, ditto Toronto and the light show mounted at Mel Lastman Square. The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, when faced with outages during their annual Festival of Lights, doused strands with hot sauce, hoping to repel the insatiable rodents from destroying the two million lights strung for the festival.

But according to a reporter for the Cincinnati Enquirer, the plan made little difference. “It seems,” he wrote, “the squirrels may like their cords with a little hot sauce.”

So why the interest in our lights? For one, squirrels are naturally curious and, apparently, they like the taste of copper. Another theory is that they like the taste of the soy-based plastics covering the wires. Of course, the connectors we use between strands look vaguely like acorns, and this is the time of year squirrels are programmed to collect as much food as possible.

True, too, that a rodent’s teeth grow continuously, and they love chewing wires, indulging their instinct to gnaw, keeping their teeth trimmed. In fact, according to the website, CyberSquirrel1, which monitors such things, squirrels have knocked out the power grid in various parts of the world over 850 times since 1987.

Regardless, any homeowner will tell you not only how ubiquitous, but how very determined squirrels are. We’ll never beat them, but perhaps we can deter them. Some experts advise applying chemical repellants like cayenne, mustard oil, soap, citrus peel, garlic, or predator urine. Some people report motion-activated sprinkler systems are the answer, although a Maine winter is probably not the best time to try that strategy.

The only solution seeming to have any lasting effect is humane relocation of problematic squirrel populations. Of course, with a population numbering a billion (or so), that option might keep us too busy to do anything else. Our horticulturists, instead, will try a spicy bouquet of natural deterrents and see how we go. Perhaps our squirrels have milder tastes than those city squirrels from Cincinnati…

What’s in Bloom – September 13, 2018

Thursday, September 13th, 2018

Hibiscus are amazing and putting on quite a show! Lovers of black-eyed-Susan will not be disappointed this week. And be sure to check out the incredible blue flowers on the various types of gentains. And the very unusual flowers of Tricyrtis or toad lilies are sure to impress. Ornamental grasses are looking good and the asters are starting to open.

Entrance Walk:
Agastache ‘Blue Fortune’ – giant hyssop
Hibiscus ‘Cherry Cheesecake’ – rose mallow
Hibiscus ‘Jazzberry Jam’ – rose mallow
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’ – panicle hydrangea
Rudbeckia subtomentosa ‘Henry Eilers’ – sweet coneflower

Founders’ Grove:
Hylotelephium ‘Autumn Joy’ – sedum

Lerner Garden of the Five Senses:
Cyclamen purpurascens – purple cyclamen
Gentiana ‘True Blue’ – gentian
Hibiscus moscheutos ‘Blue River II’ – rose mallow
Hibiscus moscheutos ‘Pink Elephant’ – rose mallow
Lobelia siphilitica – great lobelia
Origanum laevigatum ‘Herrenhausen’ – ornamental oregano
Phlox paniculata ‘Danielle’, ’David’, ‘Tracy’s Treasure’ – garden phlox
Pycnanthemum pilosum – downy mountain mint
Rosa ‘Nearly Wild’ – rose
Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Goldsturm’ – black-eyed susan
Sedum ‘Dazzleberry’ – sedum, stonecrop
Read More

What’s in Bloom – August 23, 2018

Thursday, August 23rd, 2018

Lobelia cardinalis, cardinal flower is spectacular! Be sure to check out the cool orb-like flowers of Cephalanthus occidentalis (buttonbush). The flowers of Clethra alnifolia (summersweet) are filling the gardens with their lovely fragrance. Phlox are putting on quite a show too. Both the solidago (goldenrod) and coreopsis (tickseed) are in full bloom. The big white flowers of Hydrangea paniculata or peegee (panicle) hydrangea are very showy! Lovers of black-eyed-Susan and Joe-pye-weed will not be disappointed this week.

Entrance Walk:
Agastache ‘Blue Fortune’ – giant hyssop
Aesculus parviflora – bottlebrush buckeye
Calycanthus ‘Aphrodite’ – sweetshrub
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’ – panicle hydrangea

Founders’ Grove:
Clethra alnifolia ‘Sixteen Candles’ – summersweet
Read More

What’s in Bloom – July 31, 2018

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018

The echinacea are looking great. Be sure to search out the Monarda (beebalm) and watch for hummingbirds at the bright colored flowers. Lilium selections look and smell amazing! The bottlebrush buckeye, a butterfly magnet, is in full flower. Phlox are starting to put on quite a show, too. Hydrangea paniculata (peegee or panicle hydrangea) are showy too!

Entrance Walk:
Agastache ‘Blue Fortune’ – giant hyssop
Aesculus parviflora – bottlebrush buckeye
Calycanthus ‘Aphrodite’ – sweetshrub
Calycanthus x raulstonii ‘Hartlage Wine’ – sweetshrub
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’ – panicle hydrangea
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Pee Wee’ – oakleaf hydrangea
Ligularia japonica – Japanese ligularia

Founders’ Grove:
Ligularia japonica – Japanese ligularia
Magnolia virginiana – sweetbay magnolia

Lerner Garden of the Five Senses:
Achillea ‘Moonshine’ – yarrow
Actaea racemosa – black cohosh
Allium ‘Mt. Sinai’ – nodding onion
Anemonopsis macrophylla – false anemone
Calycanthus floridus ‘Michael Lindsey’ – sweetshrub
Campanula ‘Kent Belle’ – bellflower
Clematis addisonii – Addison’s leather flower
Echinacea purpurea ‘Fragrant Angel’ – purple coneflower
Eryngium planum ‘Tiny Jackpot’ – sea holly
Helenium hybrid ‘Helbro’ – sneezeweed
Hemerocallis ‘Spider Miracle’ – daylily
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Bulk’ – panicle hydrangea
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Sike’s Dwarf’ – oakleaf hydrangea
Lavender x intermedia ‘Phenomenal’ – lavender
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Becky’ – shasta daisy
Liatris spicata ‘Kobold’ – blazing star
Ligularia ‘Little Rocket’ – leopard plant
Lilium ‘Silk Road’ – orienpet lily
Lilium ‘Golden Stargazer’ – lily
Lobelia siphilitica – great lobelia
Melanthium virginicum – bunch flower
Monarda ‘Prärienacht’ – beebalm
Phlox paniculata ‘Danielle’ – garden phlox
Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Goldsturm’ – balck-eyed susan
Slater Forest Pond:
Actaea racemosa – black snakeroot
Ligularia ‘The Rocket’ – golden ray

Woodland Garden:
Actaea racemosa – black snakeroot
Campanula takesimana – Korean bellflower
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Kyushu’ – panicle hydrangea

Cleaver Event Lawn and Gardens:
Aesculus parviflora – bottlebrush buckeye
Allium ‘Millenium’ – ornamental onion
Echinacea ‘Rubinstern’ – purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea ‘White Swan’ – purple coneflower
Helenium ‘Red Jewel’ – sneezeweed
Hemerocallis ‘Gordon Biggs’ – daylily
Hemerocallis ‘Ice Carnival’ – daylily
Hyrangea serrata ‘Midoriboshi Temari’ – mountain hydrangea
Inula magnifica ‘Gold in Spring’ – giant fleabane
Liatris spicata ‘Floristan Weiss’ – gay-feather
Phlox paniculata ‘Danielle’ – garden phlox
Spigelia marilandica – indian pink
Thalictrum rochebruneanum – meadow rue
Veratrum formosanum – veratrum

Great Lawn and Ledge Gardens:
Aesculus parviflora – bottlebrush buckeye
Asclepias tuberosa – butterflyweed
Callirhoe involucrata – purple poppy mallow
Echinacea ‘Hot Papaya’ – purple coneflower
Echinacea ‘Pica Bella’ – purple coneflower
Echinacea assorted selections – purple coneflower
Geranium ‘Gerwat’ – Rozanne geranium
Helenium hybrida ‘Hellbro’ – Mardi Gras sneezeweed
Hemerocallis ‘Unexpected Extra’ – daylily
Malva sylvestris ‘Zebrina’ – mallow
Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Goldsturm’ – black-eyed Susan
Rudbeckia maxima – giant coneflower
Silphium perfoliatum – cup plant
Thalictrum rochebrunianum – giant meadow rue
Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Fascination’ – culvers root

Bosarge Family Education Center Gardens:
Asclepias incarnata ‘Ice Ballet’ – swamp milkweed
Echinacea purpurea – purple coneflower
Eryngium yuccafolium – rattlesnake-master
Heliopsis ‘Bressingham Doubloon’ – false sunflower
Monarda – bee balm
Phlox paniculata ‘David’ – garden phlox
Rosa carolina – rose
Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Danube’ – Stoke’s aster

Harold & Bibby Alfond Children’s Garden:
Acanthus hungaricus – bear’s breeches
Achillea ‘Coronation Gold’ – yarrow
Allium ‘Pink Planet’ – ornamental onion
Astilbe ‘Ket West’ – astilbe
Alstroemeria ‘Sweet Laura’ – Peruvian lily
Calycanthus ‘Venus’ – sweetshrub
Clematis x ‘Rooguchi’ – clematis
Delphinium exaltatum – tall larkspur
Delphinium grandiflorum ‘Dwarf Butterfly Blue’ – larkspur
Digitalia ferruginea – rusty foxglove
Echinacea purpurea ‘Elbrook’, ‘Rubinstern’ – purple coneflower
Eupatorium perfoliatum – boneset
Geranium ‘Jolly Bee’ – geranium
Hemerocallis ‘French Tudor’ – dayliliy
Hydrangea arborescens ‘Abetwo’ – Incrediball smooth hydrangea
Hydrnagea arborescens ‘Invincibelle Spirit’ – smooth hydrangea
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Snowflake’ – oakleaf hydrangea
Lavandula angustifolia ‘Hidcote’ – lavender
Leucanthemum superbum ‘Becky’ – Shasta daisy
Liatris pycnostachya – prairie blazing star
Ligularia ‘Bottle Rocket’ – leopard plant
Lonicera sempervirens ‘Major Wheeler’ – trumpet honeysuckle
Monarda ‘Petite Delight’ – beebalm
Nepeta subsessilis – Japanese catmint
Nymphaea ‘Gold Medal’ – water lily
Ruellia humilis – wild petunia
Salvia dolichantha – clustered sage
Sanguisorba hakusanensis ‘Lilac Squirrel’ – burnet
Scutellaria incana – downy skullcap
Veronica spicata ‘Purpleicious’ – speedwell

Haney Hillside Garden:
Corydalis lutea – yellow fumitory
Dicentra eximia – fernleaf bleeding heart
Eutrochium fistulosum – hollow Joe-pye weed
Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ – sunflower
Lobelia cardinalis – cardinal flower
Oxydendrum arboretum – sourwood

Vayo Meditation Garden:
Rhododedron prunifolium – plum-leaf azalea

Burpee Kitchen Garden:
Allium sphaerocephalon – drumstick onion
Hydrangea arborescens ‘A. G. Anabelle’ – smooth hydrangea
Hydrangea arborescens ‘PIIHA-I’ – Endless Summer Bella Anna smooth hydrangea

Arbor Garden:
Achillea ‘Coronation Gold’ – yarrow
Astilbe chinensis var. taquetii ‘Superba’ – Chinese astilbe
Calycanthus ‘Aphrodite – sweetshrub
Clethra barbinervis – Japanese clethra
Echinacea purpurea ‘Magnus’ – purple coneflower
Eryngium planum ‘Blue Hobbit’ – sea holly
Geranium ‘Gerwat’ – Rozanne geranium
Geranium ‘Jolly Bee’ – geranium
Helenium hybrid ‘Hellbro’ – sneezeweed
Hyssopus officinalis ‘Blue’ – hyssop
Lavandula angustifloia ‘Munstead’ – lavender
Liatris ‘Floristan Weiss’ – blazing star
Ligularia ‘Bottle Rocket’ – ligularia
Perovskia atriplicifolia – Russian sage
Scutellaria incana – downy skullcap
Veratrum woodii – wood’s bunchflower
Verbena bonariensis – verbena
Veronicastrum virginicum – culver’s root

Giles Rhododendron and Perennial Garden:
Astilbe chinensis ‘Veronica Klose’ – astilbe
Astilbe ‘Sprite’ – astilbe
Deinanthe bifida ‘Pink Kii’ – two-lobed false hydrangea
Hydrangea arborescens ‘A. G. Annabelle’ – smooth hydrangea

What’s in Bloom – June 20, 2018

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018

Entrance Walk:
Aesculus x carnea ‘Ft. McNair’ – red horse chestnut
Benthamidia japonica var. chinensis ‘Samzam’ – Japanese dogwood
Calycanthus ‘Aphrodite’ – sweetshrub
Calycanthus x raulstonii ‘Hartlage Wine’ – sweetshrub
Chionanthus virginicus – fringetree
Hydrangea anomala ssp. petiolaris – climbing hydrangea
Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Diabolo’ – ninebark

Founders’ Grove:
Heuchera ‘Fandango’ – coralbells
Iris ‘Spartan’ – iris

Lerner garden of the Five Senses:
Achillea ‘Moonshine’ – yarrow
Allium ‘Globemaster’ – ornamental onion
Amsonia ‘Blue Ice’ – blue star
Calycanthus floridus ‘Michael Lindsey’ – sweetshrub
Clematis addisonii – Addison’s leather flower
Dianthus gratianopolitanus ‘Feuerhexe’ – cheddar pinks
Iris laevigata ‘Variegata’ – variegated iris
Nymphaea ‘Fire Crest’ – pink waterlily
Paeonia lactiflora ‘Do Tell’ – peony
Paeonia ‘Bartzella’ – Itoh peony
Paeonia ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ – Itoh peony
Paeonia ‘Sanoma Amethyst’ – peony
Primula japonica – primrose
Rosa ‘Nearly Wild’ – rose
Salvia argentea ‘Hobbit’s Foot’ – sage
Salvia nemerosa ‘Caradonna’ – meadow sage
Salvia x sylvestris ‘Mainacht’ – sage
Symphytum x uplandicum ‘Axminster Gold’ – comfrey
Syringa komarowii – lilac
Syringa pubescens ssp. patula ‘Miss Kim’ – lilac
Weigela ‘Alexandra’ – weigela
Read More

What’s in Bloom – June 7, 2018

Thursday, June 7th, 2018

Entrance Walk:
Aesculus x carnea ‘Ft. McNair’ – red horse chestnut
Amsonia ciliata ‘Spring Sky’ – blue star
Calycanthus x raulstonii ‘Hartlage Wine’ – sweetshrub
Syringa x prestoniae ‘Donald Wyman’ – lilac
Viburnum plicatum forma tomentosum ‘Shasta’ – doublefile viburnum

Founders’ Grove:
Enkianthus campanulatus ‘Albiflorus’ – white redvein enkianthus
Iris ‘Spartan’ – iris


‘Fernwood’s Golden Slipper’ and ‘Cream da Mint’ lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis) outside of the Lerner Garden.

Lerner garden of the Five Senses:
Allium ‘Globemaster’ – ornamental onion
Calycanthus floridus ‘Michael Lindsey’ – sweetshrub
Clematis addisonii – Addison’s leather flower
Convallaria majalis ‘Fernwood’s Golden Slipper’ and ‘Cream da Mint’ – lily of the valley
Daphne x burkwoodii ‘Carol Mackie’ – daphne
Dianthus gratianopolitanus ‘Feuerhexe’ – cheddar pinks
Diphylleia cymosa – umbrella leaf
Dodocatheon clevelandii ssp. insulare – Padre’s shooting star
Epimedium ‘Amber Queen’, ‘Lemon Zest’, ‘Yokihi’ – barrenwort
Iris laevigata ‘Variegata’ – variegated iris
Lamprocapnos spectabile ‘Valentine’ – bleeding heart
Paeonia rockii – peony
Phlox stolonifera ‘Sherwood Purple’ – creeping phlox
Primula japonica – primrose
Salvia nemerosa ‘Caradonna’ – meadow sage
Salvia x sylvestris ‘Mainacht’ – sage
Thymus serpyllum ‘Pink Chuntz’ – thyme
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