Cedar Valley Arboretum & Botanic Gardens

Archive for August 2009

Flowers in the Afternoon

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What a sweet little flower!  Great in the garden and in bouquets, the four o’clock flower (Mirabilis jalapa) is currently blooming in the Display Gardens.

This variety is a bright magenta, but can be found in a range of colors and is said to have the ability to change colors (white to light violet or yellow to pink, etc.).  The annual gets its name from blooming late in the afternoon.  Height ranges from 12 to 24 inches.

In Latin, Mirabilis means wonderful and Jalapa is a town in Mexico.  It is said that the species was exported from the Peruvian Andes in the 1500’s and is now naturalized throughout South America in the tropical and warm temperate regions.  In USDA Zones 9-10, the plant will act as a perennial.  Four o’clocks have the possibility to reseed from year to year in Iowa gardens.

See you in the gardens.

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August 27, 2009 at 5:20 pm

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Dig It

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For all you blog lovers, make sure to check out KWWL meteorologist Eileen Loan’s garden blog!  http://addins.kwwl.com/blogs/thedirt/ 

She wrote about The Arboretum last week! 🙂

Written by cedarvalleyarboretum

August 22, 2009 at 3:13 pm

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Counting down the days!

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The Arboretum’s annual Fall Harvest Festival is ONE MONTH away!  The pumpkins are blooming and all things autumn are soon to follow!

Make sure to attend this year’s festival, September 20th, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  Free admission and fun for all ages. 

Check out our website for more information.  www.cedarvalleyarboretum.org

Written by cedarvalleyarboretum

August 20, 2009 at 8:04 pm

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Verbena

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With the hot summer weather FINALLY arriving, our annuals at The Arboretum are starting to really pop!  Have you found a favorite annual in the Display Gardens, Enabling Gardens or Community Gardens?  Both are jam-packed with color and I have enjoyed watching them mature over the season.

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One of my favorite annuals of the summer has been the white verbena (Verbena x hybrida) growing in the raised beds of the Enabling Garden.  This no-fuss annual has provided color all summer with very little deadheading and will probably bloom through the fall.  You can also find varieties in shades of pink, purple and red.  Verbena thrives in full sun and well-drained soil.

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Verbena bonariensis, or Brazilian Verbena, is in the same family but has a very different growth habit.  This taller verbena is bright purple with very delicate flowers that can provide an airy feel in your garden.  Brazilian Verbena is considered an annual, but will often reseed from year to year (sometimes good or bad, depending on the space!).  To see up-close, check out the Brazilian Verbena growing in the flowerbed just north of the parking lot.

See you in the gardens.

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August 19, 2009 at 9:12 pm

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