Potting Parties at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show

The horticulturists at the Chicago Botanic Garden are leading potting parties at the Chicago Flower and Garden Show at Navy Pier this week. The cost is $20 and includes a pot and five plants that will make for a wonderful spring display. For more information, visit www.chicagoflower.com.

The First Signs of Spring: Witch Hazels in Bloom

Witch hazel
Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’ in bloom in the Dwarf Conifer Garden

The Chicago Botanic Garden is showing the first signs of spring this week with the witch hazels coming into bloom. While these shrubs can be showy in three seasons, certainly their fragrant flowers that bloom at unusual times are of primary interest. They can be the latest (October) or earliest (February to March) shrubs to bloom, with their blossoms emerging while the brown seed capsules from the previous year are still attached to the branches. Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’ has flowers in an unusual blend of red, yellow and orange. Most other witch hazels have yellow blooms. Come out and enjoy this first sign of spring at the Garden!

Forcing Branches to Bloom Indoors

Heather Sherwood, Senior Horticulturist at the Chicago Botanic Garden, shows us how easy it is to cut flowering branches and bring them indoors for early blooms this spring!

The Orchid Album Exhibition

The Orchid Album, written by Robert Warner and illustrated by John Nugent Fitch, set the standard for orchid description and illustration in the nineteenth century. Containing more than 500 stunning chromolithographic plates in 11 volumes, this work captured orchid varieties in their wild states before hybridization. The exhibition is on display in the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Lenhardt Library through May 9, 2010.