The Yellow Farmhouse Garden

May 11, 2017

Mother’s day plant sale at Matthaei Botanical Gardens this weekend

Filed under: Events,Flowers — Tags: , — bob @ 12:05 pm

The Matthaei Botanical Gardens – Nichols Arboretum annual Mother’s Day Plant Sale is coming up this weekend, May 13 and 14.

About three weeks ago I visited the Gardens and got a sneak peek at the plants growing in the greenhouse. I can tell you that these are no ordinary, anonymous plants grown by an impersonal factory growing operation. They are lovingly grown and tended by Adrienne O’Brien and her helpers right in the greenhouse at the Botanical Gardens. When I was there, the plants were still young but were growing strong and looked absolutely wonderful.

Horticulturist Adrienne _________ leads  team of plant grower at Matthaei Botanical Gardens - Nichols Arboretum

Horticulturist Adrienne O’ Brien leads her team of plant growers at Matthaei Botanical Gardens – Nichols Arboretum.

 

A month ago Adrienne was worried that the plants were ahead of schedule.

A month ago Adrienne was worried that the plants were ahead of schedule.

Now the plants are ready to go home to Mother’s house.

The plants will be sold in the same greenhouse that they were grown in.

The plants will be sold in the same greenhouse that they were grown in.

Wide variety of beautiful hanging baskets

Wide variety of beautiful hanging baskets

Container plants make a great gift for Mom on Mother's Day.

Container plants make a great gift for Mom on Mother’s Day.

Whimsical planters like these are lots of fun.

Whimsical planters like these are lots of fun.

 

The sale runs from 10:00 am to 4:30 pm both days (9:00 am if you are a member). Matthaei Botanical Gardens is located at 1800 N. Dixboro Road, south of Plymouth Road, Ann Arbor. See you there!

Bob

September 17, 2015

The medicinal garden at Matthaei Botanical Gardens

Filed under: Events,Herbs — bob @ 10:05 am

Not long ago growing culinary herbs in a home garden was regarded as an eccentric thing to do and only the most adventuresome gardeners grew medicinal herbs. Things have changed and more gardeners than ever are growing herbs of all kinds.

Seeds for medicinal herbs are readily available in catalogs and online stores making it easy to get started with medicinal herbs.

There are plenty of books and online resources available for anyone interested in growing medicinal herbs but nothing can replace seeing it first hand.

Over 40 percent of medicines are derived from plants.

Over 40 percent of medicines are derived from plants.

For a wonderful introduction to the world of medicinal herbs visit the Medicinal Garden at University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens. The folks at Matthaei have collaborated with the U of M College of Pharmacy to develop this garden. There you can see many different medicinal plants growing.

The garden is not organized by genus and species as botanists like to do but rather by human body systems: respiratory, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular and more.  Other areas of the garden are devoted to disorders such as diabetes, infectious diseases, cancer, etc.

Matthaei Botanical Gardens is located near Ann Arbor at 1800 North Dixboro Road, a half mile or so south of Plymouth Road. They’re open daily from 10 am to 8 pm during the summer season.

Bob

April 22, 2015

Behind the scenes at the botanical gardens — getting ready for spring plant sale

Filed under: Events — bob @ 8:47 am

May 10 is probably already marked on your calender. That’s because it’s Mother’s Day and by default, Mother’s day is always shown on all calenders.

However, there is another reason to mark that day. It is weekend of the annual Spring Plant Sale that happens at University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor.

This week I had a chance to go behind the scenes and got to see how preparations were coming along for the Spring Plant sale.

The day I was there, staff and volunteers were tending thousands of growing plants. They were also designing and planting many, many hanging baskets and containers for the fund raiser.

Adrienne O'Brien Collections and Natural Areas Specialist at Matthaei Botanical Gardens leads a team of University of Michigan student workers and adult volunteers. They plant, grow and design containers for the Plant Sale.

Adrienne O’Brien Collections and Natural Areas Specialist at Matthaei Botanical Gardens leads a team of University of Michigan student workers and adult volunteers. They plant, grow and design containers for the Plant Sale.

Make plans now to take Mom on a trip to the Gardens on Mother’s Day. See you out there.

Bob

 

 

October 23, 2014

Atlanta Botanical Garden “Imaginary Worlds” through October

Filed under: Events — bob @ 10:21 am

If you are planning to drive south this month to escape our Michigan winter, think about adding a stop at the Atlanta, GA Botanical Gardens to experience their Imaginary Worlds exhibition.

Cobra sculpture

Cobra sculpture

The gardeners/artists of the Atlanta Botanical Gardens teamed up with International Mosaciculture of Montreal to create fabulous  works of living art.

Cobra

Cobra ready to strike.

Thousands of annuals are growing on metal forms covered with netting and growing medium to bring to life these fanciful sculptures.

Plants and water together create a wonderful effect.

Plants and water together create a wonderful effect.

Imaginary Worlds is the first major exhibition of its kind in the U.S.

Gorillas in the garden

Gorillas in the garden

The earth Goddess is 25 feet tall.

The earth Goddess is 25 feet tall.

Not much time is left though, the giant topiary exhibition closes at the end of October.

Bob

July 22, 2014

Once in a lifetime agave blooming

Filed under: Events,Flowers — bob @ 1:22 pm

A few days ago, I had a chance to see the blooming agave plant at University of Michigan’s Matthaei Botanical Gardens Desert House — the one you’ve been hearing everyone talking about.

It is very rare for an agave to have variegated leaves. It was probably why the plant was originally collected

It is very rare for an agave to have variegated leaves. It was probably why the plant was originally collected

When I first saw this plant over 30 years ago, it was already 50 years old. Through the years it didn’t appear to change much but of course it has been growing and maturing all that time. Now after 80 years, it is finally blossoming.

The agave has produced at tall flower stalk

The agave has produced at tall flower stalk

It has produced a flower stalk so tall that they’ve had to take out some roof glass from the greenhouse in order to give it more room to grow.

The agave flower stalk has grown through the roof.

The agave flower stalk has grown through the roof.

I encourage you to get out to the Botanical Gardens and see it. This type of agave blooms only once in its lifetime so, when it’s over, it’s over.

The agave flowers are producing real agave nectar, not the manufactured stuff you buy in the store.

The agave flowers are producing real agave nectar, not the manufactured stuff you buy in the store.

Matthaei Botanical Gardens is located on Dixboro Road south of Plymouth Road, Ann Arbor, directions and hours are available on their website.

Bob

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