Get Growing Blog

It’s Poppin’: March 22nd

Leaves

Spring is here! After a warm weekend, temperatures dropped quickly, but you’ll be surprised at all the blooms poppin’ at both our campuses!  Here’s our weekly guide of where to look: 

Holden Arboretum 

When you arrive, make sure to look at the beds between the parking lot and the Corning visitor center.  They’re still looking spectacular, with several daffodil species in peak bloom, along with the Lenten roses.

Daffodils and Lenten Rose
Daffodil and Lenten Rose

Perhaps the best pop of color is right there in front of our visitor center.   In the afternoon sun on Wednesday, I walked through the Wildflower Garden to see what early spring flowers were blooming.  One of my favorite sedges – yes a sedge- was in in full bloom – Carex plantaginea, the seersucker sedge. 

Seersucker Sedge
Seersucker Sedge

Why this Ohio native is not more common in garden landscapes, I do not know, but it provides a really interesting pop very early in the season.  Next I headed up the hill, and in doing so, I passed by the tiny flowers of leatherwood, a shrub know for its limber branches. While widespread in eastern northern American forests, it’s fairly spotty in its distribution and not a well-known native.  Finally, at the top of the hill in the limestone rockery, I spotted the early buttercup, Ranunculus fascicularis a state-threatened species more common in the western half of Ohio.

Early Buttercup

Finally, as you explore the display garden, the Forsythia, a shrub covered in small yellow flowers, is in peak bloom.  More common in days gone by, it is definitely an early bloomer that many use as a sign that the spring showers of April are near.   

Cleveland Botanical Garden 

It’s safe to say that our daffodils are at peak bloom, and while the tulips have emerged, they are still quite low to the ground and that display is a few weeks away.  This week the winter hazel, Corylopsis pauciflora, caught my eye, with its pale-yellow blooms dripping from its spreading branches. 

Winter Hazel
Winter Hazel

In the restorative garden outside Clark Hall, notice the carefully trained Cornelian cherry, Cornus mas flowering – typically this plant grows as a tree, but here, it’s been trained to grow up against the exterior stone wall of Clark Hall.

Cornelian Cherry

Finally, the Japanese garden is my must visit place this week in order to see the single weeping cherry, Prunus ‘Snowfountains’ that is in peak bloom and will soon be done.  It’s set against the rounded evergreen shrubs and it makes quite a bold statement this early in spring! 

Prunus ‘Snowfountains’
Prunus ‘Snowfountains’

Please enjoy this first weekend of spring – and let us know on social media what you’re finding in flower! 

Tom Arbour, M.En.

Tom Arbour, M.En.

Curator of Living Collections

As Curator of Living Collections at Holden Forests and Gardens, Tom guides the acquisition and documentation of more than 20,000 plants and trees at Cleveland Botanical Garden and The Holden Arboretum. Significant arboretum collections include oak, crabapple, maple, conifers, and Ohio wildflowers. At the Cleveland Botanical Garden, two biome-based glasshouses contain plants of the Madagascar spiny forest and a rich neotropical rainforest community. Tom is particularly interested in connecting with those wanting to use Holden’s living collections for research. Please contact Tom to learn more about the broad collection of trees and plants at our two campuses.

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