618 posts in News

West Side Story

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum (October 9 - 22, 2017)

1)   Cedrus atlantica ‘Aurea’

Native to the Atlas Mountains of Morocco and Algeria, C. atlantica ‘Aurea’ is a slow-growing, conical tree with golden yellow foliage. As the tree matures, its needles turn to a greener color.
Atlas cedars can grow to 120 feet in height, but this cultivar tops out at about half that.
A member of the Pinaceae (Pine family), this specimen is located in the north Pinetum near 26th Avenue East and East McGraw Street. 

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Reflections of a Rare Care intern: Wading through head-high nettles and scarifying seeds

Myesa Legendre-Fixx spent the summer as an intern for the Rare Plant Care and Conservation Program (Rare Care). She completed her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Oceanography at UW June 2017.
Working as a Rare Care intern has been a thrilling summer! Over the summer, Ceci and I monitored 17 different plant populations, did 10 seed collections, worked with the US Bureau of Land Management doing rare plant and weed surveys and fire severity assessments of burned areas, improved the seed vault and started almost 500 seeds of Whited’s milk-vetch (Astragalus sinuatus) for an outplanting. 

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September’s Super Days Of Service In The Arboretum

Thanks to spot on planning and recruitment by our partner, Arboretum Foundation, and cooperative PNW weather, two of our biggest community service events during the year were a huge success!
We celebrated United Way Day of Caring on September 15, when 130 volunteers representing 6 companies; Nordstrom, Sonos, Fred Hutch, Google, IMPINJ, Microsoft and Chase Bank, participated in 7 arboretum projects led by UW Botanic Gardens horticulture and Seattle Parks and Recreation staff. 

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John A. Wott Fellowship Awarded to Ryan Garrison

The John A. Wott Botanic Gardens Endowed Fellowship was awarded this fall to Ryan Garrison, a master’s student in the UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences.
Ryan was born and raised in Jackson, Michigan. His father’s love of plants and nature, and both his parents’ teaching professions set the foundation for a lifetime of growing plants and appreciating the value of learning. 

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Aug 30, 2017 / History, Washington Park Arboretum, News / John A. Wott, Director Emeritus UW Botanic Gardens

Glimpse into the past – Duck Bay and Shoreline Restoration

Establishing new shoreline

The water level in Lake Washington dropped an average of nine feet in 1916, when the complete set of canals and locks for increased shipping were completed. Much more land around the edges of Union Bay was then exposed, all of it soft and boggy. The City of Seattle had long used the low spots in various parks as dump sites, which is why artifacts are often found in low areas throughout Washington Park Arboretum. 

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Summer Fruit from the Washington Park Arboretum

Close-up photo of the various Magnolia fruit

1)   Corylus colurna                     Turkish Hazel

This native of SE Europe produces edible nuts inside intricately beaked husks.
This Corylus and other Birch Family members can be found near the terminus of Foster Island Road.

2)   Dipteronia sinensis

Dipteronia is a member of the soapberry family, Sapindaceae, which also includes Acer or maples, another winged-fruited genus.
As fall approaches, the fruit of Dipteronia will continue to ripen to a reddish-brown color. 

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Summer Interests from the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum (July 31, 2017 - August 14, 2017)

1)   Abies concolor                     White Fir

This tall conifer, native to the mountains of western North America, adds an interesting silvery blue backdrop to our Legume collection.
The young trees are valuable in the Christmas tree trade for their ornamental look.
The specimens in grid 16-6E were planted in 1938.

2)   Acer davidii                     David’s Maple

This tree is named in honor of French priest and naturalist Armand David, who first described the species while on mission in central China. 

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Our Heralded Hydrangeas

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, (July 17 - 31, 2017)

1)   Hydrangea aspera subsp. robusta

This 10-foot shrub with large fuzzy leaves produces flat, light blue flowers to 12” across on petioles which may reach 14” or more!
Native to the region between the Himalayas, across southern China, to Taiwan.
This 1941 specimen is located in the Camellias, next to Franklin tree along Arboretum Drive.

2)   Hydrangea heteromalla                               Wooly Hydrangea

A tree-like hydrangea native to China and the Himalayas. 

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Selected Cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum (July 5 - 18, 2017)

1)   Hydrangea heteromalla
Wooly Hydrangea

Native to China and the Himalayas.
An arborescent shrub growing to an average 10 to 15 feet.
Located in the Pacific Connections China Entry Garden, south of the shelter.

2)   Itea ilicifolia               Holly-leaved Sweet Spire

Native to western China.
Evergreen shrub, growing up to 16 feet tall and 10 feet wide.
Bears fragrant racemes of greenish-white flowers in late summer and fall. 

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July Plant Profile: Hydrangea integrifolia

Originally posted July 1, 2014
An evergreen hydrangea?!!  You betcha!
There are very few evergreen vines for gardeners in the Pacific Northwest, but this gorgeous gem from Asia is  becoming more readily available and it’s simply one of the coolest flowers you’ll ever get to witness opening.
From plump, peony-like buds, they begin to slowly crack open, a froth of fertile flowers begin to form and over the course of a few days, a flat umbel “lacecap” begins to form. 

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