Plant Talk | Science Talk

Introducing The Pine Tree Café!

Posted in Around the Garden on April 15th, 2014 by Lansing Moore – Be the first to comment

Pine Tree Cafe Next time you’re feeling hungry at the Garden, stop by the latest attraction at the Leon Levy Visitor Center. Months of work and preparation throughout the winter have resulted in yesterday’s highly-anticipated debut of the Garden’s newest eatery. The Pine Tree Café offers visitors to the Garden a tasty new dining experience from our friends at STARR Restaurants.

This unique addition to the Garden’s visitor experience is named for the collection of towering trees in which it sits. The Pine Tree Café takes advantage of its location under the pleasing shade of the Arthur and Janet Ross Conifer Arboretum to create a space where guests can enjoy their lunch within view of a world-renowned collection of rare and unusual pines from Asia, Europe, and North America.

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Morning Eye Candy: Proof

Posted in Photography on April 15th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

They’re minute but resolute, those small green things that join together to build the season.

Spring in the South Arboretum

In the South Arboretum – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

Morning Eye Candy: Dog’s Day

Posted in Photography on April 14th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

Cornus mas

Cornelian cherry dogwood (Cornus mas) – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

Morning Eye Candy: Frontrunner

Posted in Photography on April 13th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

First tulips, first tulips! The Rock Garden is clearly the frontrunner in this sudden season of flowers.

Tulipa 'Ice Stick'

Tulipa ‘Ice Stick’ in the Rock Garden – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

Morning Eye Candy: Clouds of Aroma

Posted in Photography on April 12th, 2014 by Matt Newman – 1 Comment

If you know its scent, you’ll never forget it. The lemony aroma of a springtime caught red-handed.

Lonicera fragrantissima

Winter honeysuckle by the Watson Building (Lonicera fragrantissima) – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

This Weekend: Island Hopping for Orchids

Posted in Programs and Events on April 11th, 2014 by Lansing Moore – Be the first to comment

yellow orchidOnly ten days left to visit The Orchid Show: Key West Contemporary, but this weekend there are many ways to get the most out of your visit to the Garden. While this year’s Orchid Show focuses on the Florida Keys, hundreds more varieties of this lovely flower grow throughout the tropics. This Sunday we are pleased to present Island Hopping for Caribbean Orchids in conjunction with the Torrey Botanical Society. Dr. James Ackerman Jr. will read from—and sign copies of—his latest book on the orchids of the Greater Antilles, a peek into one of the most beautiful and biologically diverse regions of the globe as seen through their most stunning flora.

While April 12′s Orchid Evening has already sold out, the good news is that tickets are still available for both Orchid Evenings taking place next weekend, April 18 and 19. That’s right, for the closing weekend of The Orchid Show, there will be an after dark event on both Friday and Saturday, with a different DJ and signature cocktail each night! But it’s your last chance to experience this flamboyant exhibition at night, so get your tickets soon.

Next week The Culinary Kids Food Festival returns April 14 with all new Activity Stations for hands-on learning of the science behind your family’s favorite treats! See what we have in store for the spring edition of one of our most popular family programs here. Or read on to see what’s in store at the Garden this beautiful April weekend!

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‘Pink Peignoir’ Awakens the Azalea Garden

Posted in Horticulture on April 11th, 2014 by Kristin Schleiter – Be the first to comment

Kristin Schleiter is the NYBG’s Associate Vice President of Outdoor Gardens and Senior Curator. She oversees the wonderful gardening team that keeps our flowering gardens looking topnotch, curates the herbaceous gardens and collections, and manages the curator of woody plants. She lives and gardens in Fairfield, CT.


Rhododendron mucronulatum 'Pink Peignoir'At very long last, spring has well and truly come to the Azalea Garden. I can tell because the Korean rhododendron, Rhododendron mucronulatum, is decorating the ridge at the top of the garden near the overlook with its delicious candy colors. My favorite is the earliest-to-bloom ‘Pink Peignoir’ in a shade of cotton candy pink that sings against our often drizzly grey skies and is cheerily visible from a long distance.

Korean rhododendron make marvelous garden plants. They prefer an acid soil (which is what most soil in the tri-state area is naturally) and at least a half a day of good light. They are hardy down to a chilly zone 4. They are deciduous and lose their leaves with a late and lasting foliage show of simmering orange, gold, and scarlet.
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Morning Eye Candy: At Last

Posted in Around the Garden, Photography on April 11th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

Magnolia stellata

Magnolia stellata near the Library Building – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

From the Library: The Orchid Illustrated

Posted in From the Library on April 10th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

Ed. Note: In art, as in life, the orchid has enjoyed many decades of popularity throughout the world. But some might be surprised to find that these “exotic” flowers were en vogue with the horticultural set well before the 20th century made their cultivation rote. Even in the 1800s—and as far back as Charles Darwin’s investigation of his eponymous star orchid—there was a fervent interest in these elegant blooms.

Andrew Tschinkel, the LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s Digital Imaging Technician, gives us a glimpse into the orchid’s illustrated past.


Lager and Hurrell front coverMertz Digital, the LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s online collection, has just added several vintage nursery catalogs from the firm of Lager & Hurrell. The firm of Lager & Hurrell was established in 1896 in Summit, New Jersey and was, for decades, the largest commercial producer and distributor of orchid plants in the Americas.

John E. Lager (1861–1937), who founded Lager & Hurrell in 1896, was a legendary orchid hunter whose exploits took him to the most remote jungles of the world in a life long quest for extraordinary and beautiful orchid specimens. He was the subject of a 1933 TIME magazine profile for discovering a specimen that the writer described as “the world’s rarest orchid,” the pure white Cattleya Gigas Alba, sold by Lager & Hurrell to the Baron Firmen Lambeau of Belgium for the then astronomical price of $10,000! [Potentially $180,000 by modern estimates.]
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Morning Eye Candy: Disdainful Goose

Posted in Photography on April 10th, 2014 by Matt Newman – Be the first to comment

“I step out for a few weeks and suddenly everyone in New York City has a jacket with my name on the sleeve. What gives?”

Canadian Goose

By the Bronx River – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen