Marsha M. took this beautiful image of a monarch caterpillar at RBG last week. Looks like this little one is snacking on some milkweed (Asclepias sp.) of some sort. This is exactly what we like to see in our "Pollinator's Paradise" theme in the Nancy Yahr Memorial Children's Garden. While we planted lots of flowers in that space, we'll also stressing that it is important to provide food for the larval (caterpillar) stage of so many of these butterflies. Regardless, we're looking forward to a colorful and busy year out in that garden theme. We had 1.5" of rain last night which was a good soaking that unfortunately came with some high winds too. We had some minor garden clean-up this morning with plenty of branches and other debris down around the gardens. I thought we'd be getting more rain this morning but the skies cleared and it was hot and muggy for the remainder of the day. We didn't have to worry about any watering which allowed both staff and volunteers to immediately get busy with gardening tasks. Below are some other images from today.
tinting on fresh growth of barrenwort (Epimedium x rubrum)
'Orange Marmalade' hybrid Martagon lily (Lilium hybrida, lots of parents!)
We did have some great volunteer help today once the storm clouds lifted. Above are Marleen (in green) and Magda getting ready to plant their berm. Consider the photo above as the "before shot" and the photo below as the "after shot" with the ladies looking frazzled and making quite a mess. They put in a lot of plants and have added some nice color to their assigned garden space. Dr. Gredler and Bill O. came in for their mowing rounds and Urban stopped by for some pruning in the arboretum. Barb S. came in and helped Cheryl weed this morning. The ladies can be seen in the second photo down with Barb to the left. We also saw Chuck S., Dr. Yahr and many others today.
Cheryl (driving above) did a great job weeding multiple areas as did Cindy. Cindy focused on the Jungle Garden theme which still needs a couple more plants but is becoming over-run with weeds. Pat push mowed and worked on weeding the main parking lot and the remainder of the gazebo garden hosta collection which had a heavy crop of hackberry (Celtis occidentalis) seedlings coming up in the mulch. Big John also push mowed but spent the morning on some other projects including tidying up a portion of the children's garden, mulching and other duties. Janice did the cutting display, worked in the Thomas Jefferson Collection and spent time weeding in the Japanese garden. There isn't a garden area that is weed free right now but our goal over the coming weeks is to catch up! I hauled and placed plants for installation over the coming days so there are some areas ready to go. Below are some additional plant shots from today.
'Sunny Delight' Hakone grass (Hakonechloa macra)
China Snow Peking lilac (Syringa pekinensis 'Morton') blooming
Jerusalem sage (Phlomis tuberosa 'Amazone')
'Goshiki' variegated Zelkova (Zelkova serrata)
The photos above and below feature a special Adirondack chair artistically rendered by Connie Glowacki for the 25th Anniversary of RBG. There are 25 other chairs out in the gardens for visitors to enjoy and all 26 total will be available ultimately for purchase as a fundraiser for the gardens. This is the fifth year of our Garden Art Project and the chairs have been very well received thus far. Come check them out and envision how they will fit in your garden this fall!