62 posts in Horticulture

Selections from the Camellia Collection at the Washington Park Arboretum

Selections from the Camellia Collection at the Washington Park Arboretum, March 11 - 24, 2019

1)   Camellia japonica  ‘Willmeta’

This light pink Camellia is reminiscent of an apple blossom.
Will and Meta Jensen brought this cultivar with them as a seedling from Holland and the specific epithet is a combination of their first names.

2)   Camellia japonica  ‘Amabilis’

This white Camellia has impressively large single blossoms.
‘Amabilis’ is a French cultivar originating in Nantes in the 1820s. 

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It’s Snow Big Deal!

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, February 25, 2019 - March 10, 2019

Here’s a sampling of some of the Arboretum trees that sustained some damage from the recent snow. Luckily most of the cuttings were taking from plants that will survive!

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50 Year Snow Storm Hits Arboretum Plant Collections Hard!

The record cold temperatures and snow that fell in Washington Park Arboretum between Feb 3 and Feb 11 will be one for the record books when it comes to accounting for all the plant collections damage and total losses.

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Early Flowering Rhododendrons at the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, January 21, 2019 - February 3, 2019

1)  Rhododendron arboretum hybrid

This Rhododendron, located in the Joseph A. Witt Winter Garden, dutifully produces its blooms of bright rose in the dark of winter.
The UW Botanic Gardens’ database has records of it blooming in December, January, and February.

2)  Rhododendron floribundum

Native to the southern central area of China, and was first described by Adrien René Franchet.
Franchet was a French botanist who was noted for his extensive work describing the flora of China and Japan, based on the collections made by French Catholic missionaries in China – Armand David, Pierre Jean Marie Delavay, Paul Guillaume Farges, Jean-André Soulié, and others. 

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Jan 24, 2019 / Center for Urban Horticulture, Students, Union Bay Natural Area, Horticulture, News / Jon Backus, Union Bay Natural Area Research Assistant

Volunteers Give Back on MLK Day of Service 2019 at the Union Bay Natural Area

Volunteers helping out in the Union Bay Natural Area, 2019 MLK Day of Service

“The time is always right to do what is right.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
While championing civil rights, Martin Luther King Jr. was also a strong advocate for environmental justice. In honor of MLK Day of Service 2019, over 30 dedicated volunteers came ready to work to help restore valuable habitat for wildlife in the Union Bay Natural Area (UBNA) at the Center for Urban Horticulture. 

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Selected Cuttings from the Witt Winter Garden at the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Witt Winter Garden at the Washington Park Arboretum (December 31, 2018 - January 13, 2019)

1)   Chimonanthus praecox                          Wintersweet

The light yellow flowers are debatably the sweetest of the Witt Winter Garden.
Wintersweet is highly cultivated in China where the flowers are used in teas and herbal remedies despite the fact that the seeds are poisonous.
Also in China, the flower petals are used in potpourri and to scent linen.

2)   Cornus sanguinea ‘Midwinter Fire’                          Midwinter Fire Dogwood

Cornus sanguinea is native to Europe. 

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Winter Interest at the Washington Park Arboretum

1)  Camellia sasanqua                          Sasanqua Camellia

This glossy evergreen shrub with attractive flowers is native to China and Japan.
There are many cultivated varieties of this species with the first ones being recorded from Japan around 1700. Over 15 varieties reside in our Camellia Collections.
The plant was valuable to early Japan as the leaves were used for tea and the seeds used to make tea seed oil. 

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Fall Highlights of the Arboretum Creek

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, (November 13 - 26, 2018)

1)  Taxodium distichum                           Bald Cypress

This deciduous conifer in the family, Cupressaceae grows in marshy and seasonally inundated soils.
Bald Cypress are famous for their “knees”, woody conical projections that emerge from the soil.
The purpose of these knees is still not entirely known.  Some speculate they help oxygenate the roots or provide stability in the often loose swampy soils this species prefers. 

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Olive Olives: A Medley of Olive Family Members

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, October 29, 2018 - November 11, 2018

1)  Chionanthus virginicus                          Fringetree

This deciduous small tree or shrub is native to the southeastern United States.
Its common name refers to the slightly fragrant, spring-blooming flowers which feature airy, terminal, and drooping clusters (4-6″ long) of fringe-like, creamy white petals.
This cutting came from a shrubby specimen located east of the Arboretum Loop Trail and north of the Viburnums.

2)  Fraxinus americana ‘Rosehill’                          White Ash

This White ash cultivar ‘Rosehill’ is a seedless, broad-conical cultivar that typically grows 35-50’ tall. 

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Autumn Colors Appear at the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, October 1 - 14, 2018

1)  Viburnum rhytidophyllum                     Leatherleaf Viburnum

This large evergreen shrub grows to 6-10 feet and is native to central and western China.
Fragrant creamy-white clusters of flowers emerge in spring, followed by berries in the fall that first appear red and change to glossy black.
You can view this shrub along the east side of the Arboretum Loop Trail in the Viburnum Collection. 

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