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Flowers in the Sky

Flowers in the Sky

Fireworks at Longwood span a colorful history, from their debut during founder Pierre S. du Pont’s early garden parties and July Fourth celebrations to the spectacular Fireworks & Fountains Shows of today, set in the magnificent setting of our Main Fountain Garden.

By Colvin Randall, on July 24, 2019
The Luminous Lotus
three lotus flowers with pink petals

The Luminous Lotus

While many flowers are worthy of captivating our attention, few have inspired hearts and minds throughout the ages quite like the lotus … a beautiful, interesting plant that is not only extremely useful but also incredibly symbolic.

By Raymond Carter, on July 18, 2019
International Waterlily Competition Winners Now Blooming
purple Nymphea waterlilies floating in water with green leaves

International Waterlily Competition Winners Now Blooming

Waterlilies are so special to Longwood that they were designated a core plant collection in our first and subsequent plant collections policies … plants comprising core collections are the highest priority at Longwood and central to our mission.

By Kristina Aguilar, on July 10, 2019
Bent into Shape

Bent into Shape

Here at Longwood, we like to honor the Fourth of July with a flourish that bends the norm … a patriotic design in the turf of our Italian Water Garden, achieved by bending the grass just-so to achieve a desired aesthetic.

By Derek Miller, on July 3, 2019
Designing Women

Designing Women

It’s been said that those who can’t do, teach. Here at Longwood, however, the remarkably talented instructors Jane Godshalk, Cres Motzi, Nancy Gingrich Shenk, and Midori Tanimune prove that not only can they do floral design but they can certainly—and quite wonderfully—teach the art of floral design, while inspiring those students lucky enough to learn from them.

By Katie Mobley, on July 1, 2019
It Takes a Family

It Takes a Family

Haig Mardirosian, master of ceremonies for the 2019 Longwood Gardens International Organ Competition, has been a concert organist for more than 50 years and has more than 20 commercial recordings as soloist, ensemble performer, and conductor to his credit.

By Haig Mardirosian, on June 26, 2019
Worldwide Wonderment: Fellows in the Field

Worldwide Wonderment: Fellows in the Field

From Singapore to California and Shanghai to Arizona, hear from the Fellows as they detail the time spent at their host organizations, sharing lessons learned and memories made.

By Chelsea Mahaffey, Erin Hepfner, Sadie Barber, Caroline Tait, and Eleanor Gould, on June 18, 2019
Seeing Beauty to Save Our Global Garden
person standing in front of an arched entry way

Seeing Beauty to Save Our Global Garden

I had the absolute honor of sharing my thoughts on beauty and its role in protecting nature—our global garden—as a TEDxWilmington speaker.

By Paul B. Redman, on June 13, 2019
Style, Color, and Tone: Making the Organ Sing
a person sitting on an organ

Style, Color, and Tone: Making the Organ Sing

Head of the organ department at The Cleveland Institute of Music, Todd Wilson will serve as the head judge for the 2019 Longwood Gardens International Organ Competition.

By Todd Wilson, on June 6, 2019
By Leaps and Bounds: Dance Under the Stars

By Leaps and Bounds: Dance Under the Stars

BalletX will take the Open Air Theatre stage with an exemplary program inspired by the culture of Spanish Harlem, film noir, and street dance … a program worthy of the ages and perfect for the starry-skied setting of our Open Air Theatre.

By Colvin Randall with Katie Mobley, on June 4, 2019
Entering an Organization as a New Leader: Fellows Leadership Salon
the fellows posing for a picture

Entering an Organization as a New Leader: Fellows Leadership Salon

PHS President Matt Rader, who has been in his role for three years now, led an inspiring salon focused on entering an organization as a new leader and discussed the importance of new leaders knowing their sector, assessing and understanding their organization, empowering their staff, and delivering outstanding quality to both the community and an organization’s supporters.

By Caroline Tait, on May 31, 2019
Seeds of Inspiration

Seeds of Inspiration

For the second-year Professional Horticulture students who have designed this year’s Student Exhibition Garden, inspiration comes in the form of seeds—their resiliency, their resulting dyes and textiles, their importance in food crops, and the symbolism of seeding and growing an interest in biological science.

By Katie Mobley and Lynn Schuessler, on May 29, 2019
Birth of a Bonsai
a person pruning a fully bloomed pink azalea bonsai

Birth of a Bonsai

The art of bonsai is rooted in patience and harmony … a practice that entails contemplation and lots of decision-making along the way. Those decisions must be made from both a horticultural standpoint and an aesthetic standpoint in order to achieve the true goal of bonsai: nurturing and training a tree in a container to appear as it would in nature.

By Kevin Bielicki, on May 23, 2019
A Tree with a Story to Tell
young sycamore plants in pots

A Tree with a Story to Tell

When it’s time to plant a tree at Longwood, I look to plant one with a story. … Our new sycamore originates from the incredibly massive tree just a few miles down the road at Brandywine Battlefield State Park in Chadds Ford.

By Scott Wade, on May 17, 2019
Capturing the Beauty: Image Management at Longwood
close up of a woman with a Nikon photo taking a photo in the water lily pond

Capturing the Beauty: Image Management at Longwood

For a librarian, managing images at Longwood Gardens is in the “dream job” category. Images are an essential tool for telling the Longwood story and sharing Longwood with the world. From beauty shots of seasonal displays to documentation of plumbers calibrating fountains to yearly Waterlily Display preparation, there is always something to photograph at Longwood. As Longwood’s digital resource manager, keeping up with the “fire hose” of images and delivering just the right images when they are needed is an exciting challenge … and every day is different!

By Maureen McCadden, on May 15, 2019
Waking the Giant
white hallway with pipes on the sides

Waking the Giant

Preparing the Main Fountain Garden for its annual awakening is a multi-faceted process of plumbing and electrical ingenuity that begins months before the fountains start to dance.

By Katie Mobley with Raymond Mackey, on May 7, 2019
Bright Talent, Dazzling Repertoire

Bright Talent, Dazzling Repertoire

Every three years, we welcome 10 of the brightest young organists from around the globe to compete before a panel of renowned judges … all in hopes of garnering the $40,000 Pierre S. du Pont First Prize. But before the competitors arrive here at our Gardens, they must first design their repertoire according to our guidelines.

By Michael Stafford, on April 17, 2019
Botanical Curiosities of Spring Flowers
close up image of a yellow winter aconite flower

Botanical Curiosities of Spring Flowers

The beauty and abundance of flowers—both in gardens and in nature—is the hallmark of the spring season. Although their beauty is obvious and appreciated by all, these highly anticipated floral displays are the result of complex, interacting factors.

By Peter Zale, Ph.D., on April 3, 2019
Learning by Doing: Our Professional Horticulture Program
two people walking through a vegetable garden

Learning by Doing: Our Professional Horticulture Program

Our tuition-free Professional Horticulture Program is as unique—and inspirational—as its students. Combining practical experience, coursework, hands-on projects, and study abroad travel, the two-year immersive program prepares students of varied interests and ages—high schoolers to career changers—for careers in horticulture through fun, active learning.

By Brian Trader, on April 1, 2019
Beautiful Music, Inspiring Message: Our Earth Day Performances
a small band performing on a stage with a green backdrop a small band performing on a stage with a green backdrop

Beautiful Music, Inspiring Message: Our Earth Day Performances

Longwood Gardens and holidays go hand-in-hand, from the grandeur of our displays during the Christmas season to the eye-popping fireworks and fountain shows celebrating our country’s independence. And while Earth Day (April 22) is not really thought of as a “holiday,” it holds special significance for those of us who work here.

By Thomas Warner, on March 29, 2019