An October visit to the Minnesota Arboretum

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RickR
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Joined: 2009-09-21
An October visit to the Minnesota Arboretum

Today I made a quick visit to our Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Of course, it is autumn, with such decorations every where... even the gate house.

In the last 20 years things have change a lot, going from a more academic true arboretum to one that is more general public oriented to attract more visitors and members (and more income). So one of the newer instigations is a yearly theme throughout the arboretum grounds. This season, it is "roots" and there are many sculptures in various parts of the acreage. A sampling:

Last year the theme was willow houses, and there were all different kinds. This one near the entrance, they decided to leave up another year.

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Peak viewing time for ornamental grasses is past, but the season last a long time.

Calamagrostis 'Karl Foster' with Saccharum (Edrianthus) ravennae behind.

       

Variegated Miscanthus sinensis cultivars usually don't have enough time to flower well here.  This year is an exception.
Miscanthus sinensis 'Little Zebra' (not blooming), M. s. 'Strictus', M.s. 'Zebrinus'

             

Miscanthus sinensis 'Variegatus'

             

The Miscanthus 'Giganteus' is not variegated, but is also one that seldom blooms here. It is perhaps a foot taller than most years, at about 10 ft, and blooming now. 

             

The dwarf Switch grass, Panicum virgatum Ruby Ribbons™ is aptly named.

             

Pennisetum purpureum Vertigo™ makes a very bold statement.  Almost hidden to the right of it is Pennisetum setaceum  Fireworks®.

             

Schizachyrium scoparius 'MinnblueA' (Heavenly Blue Little bluestem) is a Minnesota introduction by Dr. Mary Hockenberry.

             

The Salsa Girls.  Even in full sun, the Variegated Japanese Forest grass (Hakonechloe macra 'Aureola') does quite well.  In the background is Heavenly Blue Little bluestem.

             

A view of the rose garden, ready for tipping at the end of the month.

             

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Kelaidis
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Title: Member
Joined: 2010-02-03

Thanks for posting these pix: many botanic gardens are doing this sort of artistic display: we have invested heavily in it in Denver. Each place is different...I know your pictures will be of interest to our Art Director who stages these things...we did Henry Moore last year and an Apache artist this year (Alan Hauser) and they have both been very interesting and successful.

For every minion of the peaks there are a dozen steppe children growing in the dry Continental heart of all hemispheres still unknown to horticulture.

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

The year before the willow houses, it was all about ants.  I thought that one was especially good.  Working retail I am constantly coming across customers that want to kill every insect (especially ants) in their yard merely because they are there.  The ant theme highlighted all the good things they do.  Kids really loved it.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Kelaidis
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Title: Member
Joined: 2010-02-03

If you have any info on the ant display, I would LOVE to have it! I am a bit E. O. Wilson fan (did they invite him to speak during the big ant year?). I think he is the greatest biologist since Darwin and of course the world's authority on ants!

For every minion of the peaks there are a dozen steppe children growing in the dry Continental heart of all hemispheres still unknown to horticulture.

Fermi
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Title: Member
Joined: 2010-03-03

Rick,
those root sculptures are pretty impressive. Are they by one artist?
cheers
fermi

Fermi de Sousa,
Central Victoria, Australia
Min: -7C, Max: +40C

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Fermi wrote:

Rick,
those root sculptures are pretty impressive. Are they by one artist?
cheers
fermi

Yes, I believe so.  Don't know who, though.

             

Panayoti,
Regarding the ant display, I don't have any more info myself, but I think it should be pretty easy for me to inquire.  Are you thinking about maybe doing something similar there?  I could give them your email you have listed here on the forum.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

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