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Herbal Travels: Spring Blooms in Botanical Gardens

3/1/2011 3:17:25 PM

Tags: Lauren Holt, Herbal Travels, Botanical Gardens, Garden Ideas, Travel

L.HoltThe weather can’t seem to make up its mind and the calendar won’t declare the vernal equinox until March 20, but I’m ready for the warmth, sun and green growing things to be here already. Thankfully, spring starts a little earlier for botanical gardens, many of which boast spectacular displays of spring blooms for the public’s viewing pleasure.

A CNN article today lists 12 gardens that are hosting spring flower shows in the next month. I did a little digging on five of them to find more fun attractions to attend while you’re there.

The Missouri Botanical Garden is showing their annual Orchid Show through March 27th. If you visit the St. Louis grounds, don’t pass up the opportunity to visit the Climatron  (check out their tropical medicinal plants) and the Power of Plants Exhibit (through May 1), which asked K-12 students to visualize the many benefits we can derive from the natural world. Check here for more events.

3-1-2011-5 
Many botanical gardens feature beatuful orchids in early spring.
Photo by Kristi Evans Lenz/ Courtesy
Flickr 

The Chicago Botanic Garden hosts a stunning array of blooms on a series of nine islands. Check out what’s in bloom now, or wait until the update on March 18th. March 5 to 13 marks the Chicago Flower and Garden Show at Navy Pier for additional garden experience, complete with workshops and seminars.

The Dallas Arboretum hosts over 500,000 spring-blooming bulbs. The 27th year of the Dallas Blooms Festival begins March 5th and extends to April 10th. In addition to a fun Fairy Tale Castle Exhibit and purportedly the best display of tulips this side of Holland, the Arboretum also offers a delicious-looking and herb-infused Spring Tea from March 8th through April 30th.

This year the New York Botanical Garden presents The Orchid Show: On Broadway March 5 through April 25th. The show echoes iconic broadway images to enhance the glamour and excitement of opening night with over 300 types of orchids. Through March 27th you can also explore Botanicals: Environmental Expressions in Art and Plants and Fungi: Ten Current Research Stories. Click here to check out what’s in bloom now.  

3-1-2011-6 
Some events, like the Philadelphia International Flower Show,
center their plants, flowers and herbs around a different theme each year.
Photo by smilebella/ Courtesy
Flickr  

March 6 to 13 marks the Philadelphia International Flower Show, the largest indoor flower show in the world. This year’s theme is Springtime in Paris, beginning with a 33-foot-high Eiffel Tower base and moving visitors through Parisian parks and gardens. Other exhibits include Liberte Egalite Accessibilite (by the American Horticultural Therapy Association), Music of the Night (inspired by the Phantom of the Opera), La Toile de Jardin (inspired by Monet’s “Water Lilies”) and Delectable Paris (featuring herbs, edible flowers and ideas for sustainable small-space gardening) among others.

The other seven displays feature orchids, tulips, wildflowers and cherry blossoms, and you can find basic descriptions here. If these events are a bit far-flung for you, look up a more local garden you could visit. Most gardens and arboretums offer tours, special events and classes on craftwork, gardening tips, cooking and plant medicines. And if you do get the chance to visit, share your experience with a comment.   



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