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Gardens at Bowling Green

Cold Snap

Usually at this time of year leaves are turning color and falling slowly to the ground, making crisp drifts. But this fall has been different: we had a sudden frost that caught many of the plants by surprise. Leaves shriveled and turned brown, still clinging:   Of course not every plant was unprepared. We have […]

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The Deep Purple Fall

The year has turned: nights are longer than days and the last of the fruits and flowers are here. We have morning glories (purple and pink) and purple amaranth, masses of purple beautyberries   and asters everywhere:   If you look carefully at the asters picture, perhaps you’ll see the bees feasting on the nectar. […]

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Summer’s End

The new things on the Green are the wildflower bed (which is still blooming) and another new bed in which tomatoes are ripening and some sort of vine in the squash family is spreading itself around (it still hasn’t fruited so I don’t know what it is). Last year I was promised that the strip […]

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Bees and Butterflys

Milkweed grows on the Green, but the kind of milkweed that grows there isn’t the kind monarch butterflies require. They want butterfly weed. And I have tried to grow it (bought a plant which arrived dead, got seeds from my friend Eileen that didn’t germinate). There was a lot of milkweed this year and after […]

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Its an ORCHID!

One of my neighbors is the orchid curator at the BBG and I asked him if our mystery plant might possibly be an orchid. He said: Good call Barbara; ’tis an orchid. It is Epipactis helleborine a Eurasian native that is increasingly common in Brooklyn and around the country: https://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/12/an-orchid-disguised-as-a-weed/ A friend (the same one who […]

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After the Day Lilies

The next set of lilies is in bloom. These are day lily cultivars, a little fancy, and they bloom later:   The really exotic lilies are about to strut their stuff, standing tall with battalions of buds: We also have some new wildflowers in the bed behind the bench. Most have bloomed by now, but […]

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Our New Wildflowers

Early in the summer a couple of my neighbors gave me packets of wildflower seeds. I didn’t know what (if anything) would come up; even after the seeds germinated I couldn’t recognize the plants. But now! We have a forget-me-not, poppies,  Some feathery stuff that might be cosmos… and other things I still can’t identify […]

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As Summer Approaches

If I have a favorite time on the Green, it’s probably now. Twenty years ago I requested permission to begin caring for the land because every year the lilies were whacked down to stubble just as they began to bloom. Why? To keep the weeds under control! So I waded in with my shovel and […]

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Meet the horse nettle!

I like weeds, most of them. But, even though they’re pretty, I don’t like horse nettles. Why? Well, for starters, they’re covered with sharp little prickles, even the leaves. And they grow by sending roots sideways under the soil and coming up in unexpected places.  So today I spent most of my time digging out […]

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