Cool, Clear, Sunny

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While the morning was quite chilly, we think we missed having a frost by just a couple degrees F.  Some folks that came in today mentioned some light frost in the grass or on their vehicles this morning.  Perhaps we’ll get a nip of frost tonight but if not, next week might do it despite some warmer days.  We had a VERY productive day and as is typical with most Thursdays, we had a strong volunteer turnout.  We’ve removed about 40% of our annuals in advance of the frost and will continue with removals and more fall clean-up in earnest in the coming weeks to make way for our fast-paced Holiday Light Show (HLS) set-up.  Note how bulky and colorful our compost pile has become as seen above!  It’s always a juggling act out there but we’re pretty good at it and volunteers continue to be heavily involved with all of our activities.

Cindy worked on tidying efforts in multiple locations while Larry O. push mowed, tidied and had many other odds and ends. Big John also push mowed, dug up some woody weeds and had made a lot of progress with HLS preparations and set-up with Bobby K.  Larry H. also push mowed then put up a whole lot of lights in many locations.  Terry popped in to say hello.  I was able to run cords for a couple of hours but had other tasks to attend to as well.  It was a super day and so nice to see our children’s education program in full swing with lots of young visitors out in the gardens today.  Our education volunteers also do an exceptional job!

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our flamingos came back after clearing our pink-themed wall – a group of flamingos is called a “flamboyance” by the way…

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rich Autumn colors abound throughout the gardens (Magda’s area above…)

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‘Royal Flush’ monkshood (Aconitum carmichaelii) just starting to bloom! – perennial

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‘Fenway Gold’ Boston ivy (Parthenocissus tricuspidata) at 30′ above ground level – woody vine

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the redbud (Cercis canadensis) in the left-center has some great fall color – woody tree

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fall color beginning on ‘Autumn Moon’ fullmoon maple (Acer shirasawanum) – woody tree

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Our volunteers worked on myriad projects today.  Dave E. (above), for example, emptied, cleaned and organized our tool shed.  He did a excellent job.  Volunteers today included Kathy, Eva, Brian, Bob K., Liz (new volunteer from Ireland), Marilyn, Dick H., Ron P., Dave, Jim, Vern, Alan, Dave E., Ron R., Gene, Maury, Dr. Gredler, Rollie, Nancy N., Becky, Steve J., Gary, Benjamin and many others.  Activities included carpentry projects (see below), organizing, raking, sweeping, mowing, removing annuals and general tidying.  We had a great group!

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Dave, Vern and Jim (left to right) assembling a custom made bench

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Nancy (above)

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Ben from Boerner Botanical Gardens (Hales Corners, WI) came today to take some treasures home to use in their garden next year.  They have the greenhouse space to save some of these shared tropicals.

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Kathy, Brian, Bob K., Marilyn and Alan (left to right) with Liz off camera right

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Janice with favorite grandson Fergus

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I was on the roof of the visitor’s center today running cords and had a nice view of the formal gardens (note Dr. Gredler mowing in the rose circle)

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fall color on a heavily “sculpted” and pruned Amur maple (Acer ginnala) – woody tree

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Korean feather reed grass (Calamagrostis brachytricha) – perennial

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