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Posts Tagged ‘flowers’

I like to post photos of warmer seasons while we’re in the depths of winter, to remind us that spring is not very far ahead. Here are a few scenes from a lovely botanical garden on the edge of Salt Lake City, Utah, which I visited last June.

 

Red Butte Garden 1
Allium and falling water

 

Red Butte Garden 2
Four Seasons garden

 

Red Butte Garden 3
Herb garden

 

Red Butte Garden 4
Fragrance garden

 

Red Butte Garden 5
A roof garden with a view
 
Photos by Alice Webb

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The Olson Family Garden at St. Louis Children’s Hospital

 

In recent years, outdoor garden spaces at hospitals have become more common, and are often included with the construction of new health care facilities. They are usually referred to as therapeutic or healing gardens. Studies have shown that access to nature in hospital settings can reduce pain and relieve stress, which in turn enhances the immune system and speeds healing. Patients aren’t the only ones to benefit; their families and heath care staff can attain relaxation in these spaces as well.

In October I had the pleasure of visiting the Olson Family Garden at St. Louis Children’s Hospital (in St. Louis, Missouri). The staff horticultural therapist kindly gave me a tour of this delightful space. Built in the late 1990s, this 8,000-square-foot rooftop garden is dominated by a lush array of greenery, mostly in raised planters, and also seasonally in movable pots. An abundance of plant materials is important in any type of outdoor healing setting. This space also includes winding paths; stepping stones through a shallow pool; fountains; interesting and fanciful art pieces; a goldfish pond; various resting spots; movable furniture; and telescopes for viewing a large park near the hospital grounds. Furthermore, the garden is lit for nighttime access and viewing.

This garden isn’t just for passive enjoyment, however. Horticultural therapy sessions are facilitated in this space, where patients engage in gardening and associated activities. These sessions have many social, psychological, physical, and cognitive benefits. In addition, programs involving crafts, puppet shows, music, and storytelling brighten the spirits of the children.

 


This beautiful scene in the garden is in springtime, viewed from the entrance. A rolling sphere fountain can be seen in the foreground. Blooming Redbud trees are situated in front of a circle of columns topped with translucent leaf-shaped panels, symbolizing nature.

 


This miniature garden appeals to all ages.

 


Stepping stones cross a wading pool…

 


…and continue between two raised planters.

 


The garden’s goldfish pond

 


A restful nook with playful windows overlooking Forest Park

 


A custom-made planter with kid- and adult- level kaleidoscopes

 


In the foreground is one of several fountains in the garden (turned off for the season). Long-range telescopes, in the background, allow visitors to view Forest Park.

 


A wonderfully whimsical art piece

 

First four photos by Gary Wangler, Horticultural Therapist, St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
Remaining photos by Alice Webb, blog author

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One of my favorite places to visit in New England is a hidden gem in central Massachusetts called Tower Hill Botanic Garden. It consists of a wide variety of beautiful garden areas, including both formal and informally-designed spaces, and ranging from large open sites to shady woodland trails. The visitor/education center is also very impressive, with tropical greenhouses, classrooms, a café, and gift shop.

 


Gazebo at the garden entrance

 


Bromeliads frame the gazebo archway

 


The Entry Garden

 


Approach to the visitor center

 


A colorful vertical garden was recently installed near the visitor center entrance.

 


Café terrace

 


The Winter Garden

 


Mist fountain at the entrance to the Systematic Garden

 


The Systematic Garden

 


Inviting seating areas are scattered throughout the property.

 


Outdoor fireplace surrounded by plants near the old farmhouse (administrative offices)

 


A pleasant, shady spot in the garden

 


Terraced entrance to the Lawn Garden

 


The Lawn Garden is surrounded by colorful plantings.

 


Pergola at the south end of the Lawn Garden

 


A seating area in the Secret Garden also provides a view to Tower Hill’s heirloom apple orchard to the south.

 


Heading back to the parking lot through the lovely Entry Garden

For views of Tower Hill (and its tropical greenhouses) during another season, check out Winter Garden Scenes — an earlier post in this blog.

 

Photos by Alice Webb

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Today, May 6th, is the third annual National Public Gardens Day in the U.S. Its purpose is to highlight public gardens across the nation and to emphasize the important roles they play in plant/water conservation, environmental stewardship, education, and provision of green/open space. In celebration of this day, below is a sampling of a few favorite plants from my own private garden. (Photos were taken from May through October, depending on period of bloom).

 


 Enkianthus campanulatus ‘Red Velvet’

 


 Helianthus x ‘Lemon Queen’

 


 Hemerocallis x ‘Frans Hals’ (Daylily)

 


 Nipponanthemum nipponicum (Montauk Daisy)

 


 Baptisia australis (False Indigo)

 


 Clethra alnifolia ‘Hummingbird’

 



 Sedum x ‘John Creech’

 





 Syringa meyeri ‘Palibin’ (Dwarf Lilac)

 



 Ceratostigma plumbaginoides (Plumbago)

 



 Veronica spicata ‘Purpleicious’

 



 Amsonia tabernaemontana (Blue Star)

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