Sunday, April 1, 2012

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The Lurie Garden in Spring

Ballade tulips in the Lurie Garden

Spring has come to the Lurie Garden in its own quiet, subtle way.

There are no tall grasses waving in the wind, no dramatic "rivers" of purple salvia grabbing your attention. You will, however, find a gorgeous Eastern redbud (cercis canadensis) in full flower and thousands of bulbs gradually coming into bloom.

As with many gardens in the Chicago area, the record-breaking heat last month has taken its toll. Some of the bulbs -- including the crocus and Glory-of-the-Snow (chionodoxa) --  have long since come and gone.

Look closely, though, and you'll find purple Grecian Windflower (anemone blanda) and Grape Hyacinth (muscari) nestled among the emerging salvia. There's prairie smoke (geum triflorum) without the "smoke" it will eventually eventually develop.  And scattered all around are Virginia bluebells (mertensia virginica) and several daffodils, including the poet's daffodil (Narcissus poeticus) and angel's tears daffodils (narcissus triandrus).

The white "Spring Green" tulips recently were joined by the colorful "Ballade." "Maureen" tulips also will eventually make an appearance. So there's plenty to see during a stroll through the garden on a warm spring day.

If you decide you need the yellow and red tulips that scream "Spring!" you can easily find that a couple of blocks away in the rest of Millennium Park. Me, I'll take the quiet interplay of colors and textures that seems to occupy the Lurie Garden year round.

An eastern redbud in full bloom


Virginia bluebells with daffodils
Virginia bluebells and "Lemon Drop" daffodils


Prairie Smoke spring Lurie Garden
Prairie Smoke without the "smoke"

Spring Green tulips spring Lurie Garden
"Spring Green" tulips
Muscari spring Lurie Garden
Muscari


Narcissus poeticus Actea spring Lurie Garden
Narcissus poeticus 'Actea'
By Karen Geisler

4 comments:

  1. Looks like a beautiful day in the city! Thanks for all the great blossoms!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! Here's hoping our cooler weather continues so the blooms hang around for a while!

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  2. Really pretty! I usually visit this garden in late summer-I hope to see spring one day. Thanks for the photographs!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. If you want to see the rivers of blue salvia, you might want to visit in late May. Laura Young, the horticulturalist at the Lurie Garden, estimates the garden is about 5 weeks ahead of schedule at this point.

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