314 posts in Washington Park Arboretum

Flowering Cherries Need Help to Stay Healthy

The UW Botanic Gardens staff use integrated pest management to keep flowering cherry trees healthy and beautiful.

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First to Flower in March

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, Marcy 5 - 18, 2018

1)  Forsythia ovata     Korean Forsythia

This genus is named in honor of Scottish botanist William Forsyth. Forsyth was a founding member of the Royal Horticulture Society in England.
A short and spreading deciduous shrub that is popular in gardens and yards for its early spring display of bright yellow flowers.
These are planted throughout the park, but can be enjoyed walking down Azalea Way. 

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Requiem for Two Oaks and a Southern Beech

Selected cuttings from three significant tree collections in the Washington Park Arboretum, February 19, 2018 - March 5, 2018

“So if you’re travelin’ in the north country fair
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine.”
– Bob Dylan
Three significant tree collections succumbed to frigid north winds this past weekend.  These cuttings pay homage to their past lives.
1)   Nothofagus pumilio                Lenga Beech in Mapuche language      (Grid 49-2E)

This Chilean deciduous tree from the Andes (accession 637-70*A) was received as a whole plant from Edinburgh Royal Botanic Garden in 1970. 

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Colorful Willows and Dogwoods for Winter

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, February 5 - 18, 2018

1)  Salix  ‘Swizzlestick’                   Corkscrew Willow

Thrives in wet locations and is salt tolerant.
Orange-yellow young twigs that have a corkscrew growth pattern
Cut back hard in spring to promote attractive new branches.

2)  Cornus sericea  ‘Flaviramea’ Yellow Twig Dogwood

Medium to large, deciduous shrub
Bright yellow-green young twigs easily grown in medium-to-wet soils in full sun or part shade.
Species native to North America (excluding lower mid-west and deep south)

3)  Salix alba  ‘Britzensis’             Coral Bark Willow

Fast growing to 80 feet tall, but may be coppiced each spring. 

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Feb 1, 2018 / Washington Park Arboretum, Plant Profiles / Ray Larson, Curator of Living Collections

February 2018 Plant Profile: Prumnopitys andina

Prumnopitys andina

Prumnopitys andina superficially resembles a yew, which is part of the reason for its English common name, Chilean plum yew. The other part is from the female cone resembling a small plum.

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Glimpse into the past – the Miller Library Legacy of Lyn Sauter

Lyn Sauter

The Northwest lost a pioneer in horticulture, native plants, and libraries on December 14, 2017, when Lyn Sauter passed. Born in Snoqualmie Falls, WA, she first earned a degree in Chemistry at Seattle University. She then met her husband, Hansjoerg Sauter, a German medical resident. They married and had four children. She then returned to the University of Washington where she earned a graduate degree in Library Science, a field she pursued for the rest of her life. 

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Color in Winter at the Washington Park Arboretum

Selected cuttings from the Washington Park Arboretum, January 22 - February 1, 2018

1)   Sarcococca hookeriana var. digyna                     Sweet Box

Evergreen, rhizomatous, suckering shrub
Purplish stems with narrowly lanceolate, mid-green leaves and clusters of small, creamy-white, fragrant flowers
Native to western China

2)   Hamamelis mollis                      Chinese Witch Hazel

Medium-to-large, deciduous shrub
Fragrant yellow flowers often with a red base, with four ribbon-shaped petals that grow in clusters
Native to central and eastern China

3)   Daphne bholua  ‘Jacqueline Postill’                     Bhulu Swa, Nepalese Paper plant

Evergreen shrub
Leathery leaves and deep pink flowers with a powerful fragrance
Native to the Himalayas and neighboring mountain ranges from Nepal to southern China

4)   Garrya elliptica  ‘James Roof’                    Silk Tassel

Evergreen shrub to small tree
Yellowish-colored, male catkins that dangle 12″ or more from the ends of the branches in winter to early spring and turn gray as they age. 

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January 2018 Plant Profile: Salix fargesii

Salix fargesii buds

Species: Salix fargesii
Family: Salicaceae
Common Name: Chinese willow, Farges willow
Award of Garden Merit by the Royal Horticultural Society: 2012
This very attractive willow was “discovered” by Isaac Henry Burkill in 1899 and introduced to the west from central China in 1910 by E.H. Wilson. In 1908 Wilson collected his specimens in the woodlands near Fang Hsien at an altitude of 6000 feet. 

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December Plant Profile: Liquidambar styraciflua

Common Name: Sweetgum 
Family: Altingiaceae
Locations: there are 12 of these trees in our collection: for specific locations check our Living Collections database We also have some of the Asian species; Liquidambar acalycina, Liquidambar formosana and Liquidambar orientalis
Origin: Eastern, southeast and lower central United States, Mexico and Central America.
Height and Spread: to150 feet in the wild and 60-80 feet in cultivation
After our last couple weeks of wind storms most of the leaves have been blown from the trees. 

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Fine Fall Food for Our Feathered and Feelered Friends

1)   Arbutus unedo           Strawberry Tree

Arbutus unedo specimens can be found surrounding the courtyard on the south side of the Graham Visitors Center.
As the fruit requires 12 months to ripen, both flowers and ripe fruit are present in the fall for an excellent display as well as food for both pollinators and other wildlife.
Varied thrush visit our courtyard in the winter to take advantage of the dense cover and fruit. 

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