Today we will finish our virtual visit to the Chicago Botanic Gardens with a stop in the Japanese Garden. I have never before seen a Japanese garden and was enthralled with the serene beauty of it all.
It is a paradise for all to see and enjoy. The evergreen trees are pruned in a style called 'cloud pruning'. It is a horizontal type of pruning that completely changes the way an evergreen looks.
The migrating Canada Geese also enjoyed the garden. Some of the islands (and I believe this was one of them) are off limits to visitors. These two islands are only for visiting birds. How nice is that? The birds are left undisturbed to stop for a bit on their migration paths and the visitors to the gardens can enjoy them from afar such as what I was able to do. It's a good thing my camera has a great zoom to capture these birds as they were a long way away.
Okay, we leave the Japanese garden and wander on the nicely paved paths. I am for some reason fascinated with the pointy evergreens. I think it is because I like that wow factor. Sometimes gardens can get boring so when you put in a sky scraping pointy evergreen that is not too overwhelming but which raises the bar a bit the garden gets exciting!
This area is the Dwarf Conifer Garden. Our guide (we rode a tram and since we were the only ones aboard we got a good overview of the gardens) told us that many visitors were not utilizing this giant staircase to go up into the conifer garden. The garden staff decided the solution was to plant some conifers in the staircase by taking out some rocks and creating planting pockets. The hope is that people will be more apt to climb the stairs.
The Rose Garden was splendid! It is the best I've seen. The roses were all massed nicely and looked extremely healthy. Mr. Fix-it and I endeavored to smell quite a few of the blooms. Many of the hybrid teas had no scent but we found one that was a true rose smell. The name of it was 'Tiffany' and it was a lovely pink rose.
This is not 'Tiffany' but I wanted to show a shot with both rose hips and blooms in the picture. The rose hips and blooms made for an interesting rose bush and was yet another reminder we visited at the end of the garden season.
We will finish our visit to the Chicago Botanic Garden in the Heritage Garden. I was most curious about this huge and rather intimidating yet beautiful bronze sculpture. Can you guess who it is? It is a sculpture of Carl Linnaeus. Linnaeus is the father of binomial nomenclature-the naming system we use to name all of our plants. He is a very important man in horticultural history and no self respecting gardener would not know his name-though they might not know how handsome he was! Maybe it was just the sculpture:) This garden pays tribute to the world's botanical gardens. Around Linnaeus is a wild and jumbled disorder of plants (figuratively more than literally) and as you spread out from this sculpture the plants are organized by country of origin. I loved looking at each and every one of the countries and where all the plants came from. For instance, I knew that Hydrangea arborescens and Hydrangea quercifolia were both native to the United States. I also knew that Hydrangea paniculata was not but I never gave it any thought about where this hydrangea came from. It comes from....Asia!
My favorite plant in the Heritage Garden at this time of the year had to be a cool milkweed called Gomphocarpus fructicosus, aka Milkweed. This milkweed is not native to the United States though. It is native to South America. The pods were the coolest pods ever.
And lastly my traveling partner. Not only is he my best friend, and husband of many years, but he is a partner in the truest sense of the word. We are equals and enjoy being together so very much. Our children are all grown up and this was the first weekend away for just the two of us. We had a super wonderful time on our weekend in Chicago just doing our thing and not rushing here and there and trying to see everything. Sometimes travelers just need to slow down and enjoy the journey. I am very grateful we were able to do this on our weekend away....
in the garden....