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Winter Beauty in the Rock Alpine Garden

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Winter Beauty  in the Rock Alpine Garden

    Despite the balmy  54 degrees Fahrenheit it is as I write this, today is the official start of winter.  The winter solstice not only marks  the official start of winter but ironically the return to longer and eventually warmer days.  Winter has already made several visits to Denver long before the winter solstice this year.  Acantholimons or prickly thrift add green, silver, or ghostly gray hedgehog like mounds to the rock garden...

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Don’t Miss It! Week of December 19th

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Don’t Miss It! Week of December 19th

• The Ti Plant (Cordyline fruticosa) is a colorful native of southern Asia and Polynesia, and has been put to many uses by indigenous people. Its sweet, starchy roots are used as food and fermented into alcohol, and its leaves are used to thatch houses as well as to make hula skirts. Thought to bring luck and have spiritual powers, Ti is widely planted in Hawai’i and elsewhere. See it on...

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Don't Miss It! Week of December 5th

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Don't Miss It! Week of December 5th

• And Purple…: A trio of purples cascade from the top of the elevator tree. Three vines covered in blossoms intertwine: Morning Glory (Ipomoea indica) is a familiar warm-season introduction here, but is native to the tropical areas of the New World. Another familiar introduction is a form of Trumpet Vine—Thunbergia battiscombei. Its red-flowered cousins cover fences here in the summer. Our version is a pale lavender blue, and is...

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 21st

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 21st

comes from the Greek: “encephalartos” literally means “bread in the head,” and lets you know that a starchy, bready food can be gathered from inside the round trunk. And of course “horridus” refers to its ferocious looking fronds. A Southern African native, this indoor plant loves dry heat and requires very little water. • Up on the Roof: If you haven’t been up to the Green Roof lately, I recommend bringing...

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 14th

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 14th

Even as the season changes, there are still plenty of plants worth seeking out in the Gardens. Here are a few examples: • …And More Berries: You have to go see this one: Euonymus europaeus (from the Greek “good” + “name” + “european”—not that helpful in this case!) has the wildest color scheme I’ve seen. The center of each berry is bright orange and the surrounding wings are an astonishing hot pink—very...

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Autumn blooms

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Autumn blooms

Autumn is never my favorite season but it is perhaps the season that I find myself savoring moments and days the most. Soon a bitter north wind will be blowing and the 2009 gardening season will be but a memory and photos. In the mean time there is much to admire on these balmy late autumn days. Panayoti Kelaidis wrote about a nice array of fall blooming crocus last month and...

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 7th

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Don't Miss It! Week of November 7th

This time of year, a little inside and a little outside is where I want to be; it all depends on the weather. Luckily, either way I have something to see and something to learn. • Is This Tree Dead? No, actually, it is a Larix sibirica or Siberian Larch, which is a deciduous pine tree—that is, it loses its needles (more correctly called leaves) in the fall and sprouts new...

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Don't Miss It! Week of October 31st

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Don't Miss It! Week of October 31st

• Sometimes, when I go into the Boettcher Memorial Conservatory, I am looking for Big Leaves. Big Leaves really make me feel as though I am somewhere tropical. You can’t get a whole lot bigger than Anthurium hookeri ‘Big Bird’, a really big member of the Arum family (think of the Peace Lily.) • As you wander the Boettcher Memorial Conservatory, you’ll see several examples of Staghorn Fern (Platycerium), a well-named...

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Don't Miss It! Week of October 24th

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Don't Miss It! Week of October 24th

• Don’t forget to look down; you’ll notice a lot of low-growing color. Perennial Walk offers a particularly good example of Polygonum, and you can find plenty of low-growing Sumac (Rhus aromatica) spread beneath the trees in the Ponderosa Border.

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