Longwood's first major exhibition, Making Scents: The Art and Passion of Fragrance, opens tomorrow, Saturday, April 10! At the intersection of flora, fashion and science, this exhibition transforms Longwood's gemlike Conservatory into a museum for the senses.
The past year has been an olfactory adventure in Longwood's research greenhouses. In preparation for Making Scents: the Art and Passion of Fragrance, we brought in a variety of fragrant plants for trial. Some plants, such as roses, are common and easy to obtain. Fragrant varieties such as Rosa ‘Secret’s out’, R. ‘Gros Choux d’Hollande, R. ‘De Resht’, R x centifolia, R. ‘Compte Chambord’, and ‘Jaques Cartier’ will be making an appearance in the Conservatory during the exhibition.
This year the Philadelphia International Flower Show produced by The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS), America's first horticultural institution, will showcase plants from around the world in the 2010 show “Passport to the World.” A special exhibit called the "Explorers Garden" will greet guests to the show, and will capture the spirit and adventure of early plant exploration. For the "Explorer’s Garden," Longwood is forcing its signature Victoria ‘Longwood Hybrid’ water-platters into bloom.
When guests first walk into our Conservatory, they are overwhelmed by the huge variety of plants that are growing under glass. You can see plants that grow in all different regions of the world, from the tropics to the Mediterranean and even the desert.
Christmas is a time for bringing families together under one roof, and that's just what we've done here at Longwood Gardens... with plant families, that is! I invite you to get to know the familiar poinsettia a little better while appreciating their cousins as well.
Longwood Gardens established hardiness trials and a breeding program in the early 1960’s to evaluate and develop camellias that can tolerate colder winters. These efforts have lead to the release of two of the hardiest Camellias ‘Longwood Centennial’ and ‘Longwood Valentine’. As Camellia breeding and hardiness evaluation continue at Longwood Gardens, the selection of commercially available hardy camellias will increase.
The Thousand Bloom Chrysanthemum (known in Japan as Ozukuri) refers to a technique, originating in China and expanding to Japan several hundred years ago, for growing an extremely large Chrysanthemum, with a goal of producing the maximum number of flowers possible on a single plant.
This time of year everyone is talking about the stunning chrysanthemums in the Conservatory--but I would like to point out the beauty of a different, incredible, autumn-blooming plant! The genus Salvia represents the largest group of plants in the Lamiaceae family.
In March, our staff found a pair of Pileated Woodpeckers excavating a nest cavity in a large dead tree. We were lucky enough to capture the event on film and have been watching (and filming) their nesting habits ever since.
Longwood welcomes David Rogers to "Behind-the-Plants!" David is an artist specializing in larger-than-life sculptures made from natural materials. Several pieces from his Pollinators series are on display now in Longwood's Idea Garden, through September 6.
I love this time of year in Peirce's Woods. Even though it means the time for extreme humidity and lugging heavy hoses is just around the corner. The beauty of the woods in bloom makes me forget all that.
Recently Longwood staff has developed a new bulb display in the Idea Garden. This display plays two major roles; as a strong educational component both for our guests and staff, and is a strong display in itself. The display primarily features tulips and Narcissus (daffodils), displaying division types of each, grown in a trial garden setting where we can observe varieties new to Longwood.
In late winter and spring, your Clivia may be displaying some beautiful fruit. Clivia with yellow flowers will produce yellow fruit, while Clivia with orange flowers will produce red fruit. The fruit is actually a berry that contains seeds inside. If your Clivia did not produce fruit this year, it may not have been pollinated. Pollination is a simple act that is accomplished by taking ripe pollen that sheds easily from the anthers onto your finger or a Q-tip, and placing it on the stigma.
The start of another waterlily season brings with it great anticipation as we began this week to uncover the pools. But is this ritual of uncovering the pools really the start of another season? No! Several activities have already started to take place behind-the-scenes in preparation for the opening of the display.