Tag Archives: flowers

History in Horticulture: The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

“He taught both in scientific words and with dirt-stained hands….” – Jane McKinnon

The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is the Upper Midwest’s largest public garden and is open 363 days a year. Part of the University of Minnesota, the earliest grounds were established in 1907 as the Horticultural Research Center. They developed cold-hardy crops and we have them to thank for our beloved Honeycrisp apples (among many other plants).

white orchid

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Como Park Conservatory Orchid Show

My Tuesday blog posts usually feature restaurants, but I didn’t have the opportunity to try a new one this week. I did visit the Como Park Conservatory, however, and was pleasantly surprised that it coincided with the St. Paul Winter Carnival’s Orchid Show.
orchid display

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Fall in Love with the Arboretum

One of the best things about living in the Midwest is fall. It has been a lovely one this year; the leaves are changing color, the air is getting cooler and animals are getting ready for winter. It is a beautiful time to visit the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.


We walked among the dahlias:

I was distracted by the busy bees:

And the butterflies:

The colors were so vibrant:dahlia

This flower looked like it was on fire:

Even though it was busy on the grounds, it was so peaceful:

The trees were beautiful, but “peak color” should be in a week or so:

We lost ourselves in the woods:

The light was magical:

We couldn’t have asked for a lovelier day:

Memorial Moments

Memorial Day has a long history that began after the Civil War. Originally known as Decoration Day, the day was meant to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died during the war. It is now a federal holiday designated to remember all Americans who have died in service and many extend that beyond, decorating graves of loved ones who are no longer with us.

I visited the grave of my favorite veteran, my dad:grave with flowers

As always, the sea of headstones at Fort Snelling National Cemetery was a moving sight and a reminder that many loved ones have been lost over the years:fort snelling cemetery

The world seemed decorated in honor of the day:

Flowers were everywhere you looked:

Down to the dandelions:
female cardinal

And the birds in the trees:
male cardinal

A Walk in Yerba Buena Gardens

Yerba Buena Gardens is two blocks of public parks in the Mission District of San Francisco, California.flowers

The first block opened in 1993 and includes several public art installations and flowers beds along paved walkways.

The second block of the park opened in 1998 and includes a Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial, located behind the waterfall fountain. This fountain is the largest on the West Coast.

Portions of Martin Luther King’s speeches are etched in glass behind the waterfall.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will; and he’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you; but I want you to know tonight that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land.
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

According to wikipedia, the act of entering the Fountain from the Garden, reading the text from North wall to East and exiting back out into the garden represents ‘a cultural pilgrimage and contemplative metaphorical journey of transformation,’  similar to the Southern tradition of baptism by full immersion in water – reminiscent of Old School Baptist churches.
bee on flower

Yerba Buena Gardens received the Gold Medal of the Biannual Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence in 1999, but its development has been a local struggle. Taking over 3 decades to execute, its history included evictions and harassment of previous tenants in the area who joined together to fight for their rights.