Thursday, August 7, 2014

Lots Of Multitasking

Today was quite busy with lots of activity around the gardens.  We had another nice 80 degree F day and the gardens are still fairly damp from recent rains.  I gave a tour of the gardens last night for members of the Wisconsin Hardy Plant Society (WHPS) and they seemed to really enjoy the gardens (see bottom photo). There were about 55 attendees and the gardens looked spectacular with the early evening light.  Above is a morning photo of the sunken garden looking sharp and below is the arched bridge and a photo in the Japanese garden as well.  We had some guests from the Rockford (IL) Rotary Club today.  Dave and Al came to the gardens to film and interview some of our volunteers for a video they are producing that focuses on volunteerism and becoming involved members in all of our communities.  The guys were able to meet most of our volunteers this morning and joined us for break.  It was nice to see many visitors out in the gardens as well during this productive day.  Further below are some other recent flower shots from the gardens.

South American verbena (Verbena bonariensis) - annual (a true pollinator magnet!, seeds around a bit though!)
fragrant heliotrope (Heliotropium arborescens 'Alba') - annual (smells like vanilla!)
nice shot in the reception garden with Swedish ivy (Plectranthus argentatus) in the foreground - annual

Our volunteers continue to maintain the high quality out in the gardens with their various projects.  We had a nice turnout of volunteers today for sure!  Above is Gary B. who worked with Ron R. on a significant mulching project near the Japanese garden today. Bob C. and Ron B. were off in another area also working on a mulching project.  Our Grumpettes focused on weeding and tidying in multiple areas.  Directly below is Bonnie who did a nice job in the Jungle Garden with some weeding and "jungle trimming needs". The next photo down shows our camera shy Marilyn behind a leaf of the 'Thailand Giant' elephant ear (Colocasia gigantea).  Marilyn and Winifred were working with Bonnie on the same projects in the Jungle Garden.  Suzie (third photo down) did some weeding in the shade garden and Vicki spent the morning weeding in the alpine garden.  Kathy (fifth photo down) and Eva finished weeding in the reception garden and Hal and Doris were in to tidy their area and help weed in the gazebo garden.  Olive (fourth photo down) was out with her wagon and buckets cutting some fresh arrangements.  Mary Ann G. did a nice job tidying out in the Thomas Jefferson Collection.  Dr. Gredler was in for mowing and Dick H. made trips to the dump and worked on other projects as well.  Dave, Jim, Vern, Ron Y. and Bob K. worked on myriad carpentry projects too.  Jumbo Jim brought down the RECAPPERS for some afternoon work primarily in the Japanese garden.  Mary H. and Kathy P. were in this afternoon to tidy their assigned garden too (looking nice). We also saw Dr. Yahr, Ron W. and many others today.


The grounds staff had no shortage of work either.  Larry push mowed, replaced irrigation heads and had other projects as well. Cheryl worked on weeding multiple areas and shifted to some watering later.  Big John helped with path edging, fertilizing and many other projects.  Janice helped organize our morning volunteers and moved on to weeding, fertilizing, work in the Thomas Jefferson Collection and a meeting.  I was out in the gardens with our Rockford guests but returned shortly to my office duties.  Below are some additional photos from this morning.

'Celway Terracotta' wheat celosia (Celosa spicata) - annual
'Fireball' hibiscus (Hibiscus hybrida) unfurling this morning - perennial
'Mystic Dreamer' dahlia (Dahlia hybrida) - annual
Wisconsin Hardy Plant Society (check out their website at and join!) members touring the gardens last night

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