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February 26, 2015

Flurries of Activity in our Meadow Garden

"So, what's going on in the Meadow these days?" I've heard this question a lot recently, and it's easy to see why. Looking out over its frigid expanse, I sometimes feel like the entire Garden is in a suspended animation until warmer weather. But, while the Meadow Garden has been icy, it's hardly been put on ice! There's actually quite a lot going on with the Meadow and its residents if you know where to look. Those who are willing to brave the elements and seek out life in the snow will...

February 20, 2015

Something to See: The Rare V3

Orchids, once the preferred house plants of the aristocracy, have become very popular in the United States. As a plant group, they now represent the most popular flowering potted plant sold in the US, and it’s easy to find them in large chain home-improvement stores, grocery stores, florist shops, and garden centers. Longwood staff members use their imaginations and spirit of innovation to create displays that capture the wide diversity of this plant family and showcase the blooms in...

February 12, 2015

The Great Kapok Tree: A Family Community Read

During our second annual Community Read, Longwood invites young readers and their families to share the secrets of The Great Kapok Tree with author-illustrator Lynne Cherry. First published twenty-five years ago, the book has been translated into many languages and has sold over a million copies. Lynne feels this particular story touches something deep, because each of us—no matter our age—can relate to a place we love that could be destroyed.

Through her work, Lynne combines her...

February 6, 2015

The Making of our Orchid Meadow

Inspired by Longwood’s new Meadow Garden, our indoor “Orchid Meadow” features some of the most unique plants in this year’s Orchid Extravaganza display. The indoor Meadow consists of several Carex species and foliage plants as well as between 300 and 350 individual orchids. We sourced the orchids from specialty nurseries around the country to create a mix of less common plants as well as some tried-and-true favorites. The display highlights species and smaller orchids that we are not able to...

January 26, 2015

Setting the Standard

When our designers plan our displays, they think about (among many other things) form, color, and dimension—not just two-dimensional, uniform beds of flowers, but how to create height and interest. Luckily for our designers, our horticulturists and growers are constantly working to "raise the standard" by training an ever-increasing list of plants into the "standard" form.

“Standard” is the name we give to plants trained into the form of a tree with a single main trunk. The...