Day of Mega-Productivity

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Well, I forgot to finish my Thursday blog at home last night so here it is!  It has been crazy at work with preparations for the Holiday Light Show (HLS) and ending the gardening season.  I read in the newspaper yesterday that we may end up with one of the latest frost dates on record!  Regardless of impending frost, we continue to clear annuals, cut back perennials and enjoy fall color on the ‘Aconitifolium’ fullmoon maple (Acer japonicum) seen above.  We have four of these beautiful trees and all are at various stages of “fall color awesomeness”.

Big John, Cindy, Larry H., Larry O., Bobby K. and I were all involved with various HLS duties yesterday as well as some other odds and ends.  Most of the grounds staff will shift exclusively to HLS preparations as our November window is tight for getting the show up, tested, tweaked and ready to rock and roll.  We’ll get there I’m sure and our wonderful volunteers continue to help with a wide range of tasks including fall clean-up duties.

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‘Hoshi yadori’ variegated painted maple (Acer pictum ssp. mono) – woody tree

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Little Lime® panicled hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata ‘Jane’) – woody shrub

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fall color on royal fern (Osmunda regalis var. spectabilis) – perennial

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fall color on Amur maple (Acer ginnala) – woody tree

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The photo above is from our Volunteer Appreciation Dinner last night at the gardens.  I believe we had over 130 in attendance which is an excellent crowd.  Maryam, Polly, Chris and the volunteer committee did a nice job preparing for this event.  Gary Smith (below) started the night by introducing our new Executive Director, Rebecca Kronberg, who will start on Monday.  The event went well and we ended the evening by recognizing Gary and his FOURTH term as interim Executive Director and his continued commitment to the gardens.

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We had a huge number of volunteers today.  A wide range of gardening tasks, carpentry and HLS-related activities were occurring in earnest!  Volunteers included Marilyn, Liz, Barb, Shirley H., Kathy, Eva, Dave E., Steve J., Dick H., Alan, Bob K., Gene, Vern, Dave, Ron Y., Jim, Steve S., Vicki, Dr. Gredler, Nancy N. and many more.  There were a lot of folks here today as evidenced by a full parking lot at the Horticulture Center.  Above are Steve J. (foreground) and Gene collecting leaves.  The paths were covered with leaves and twigs after the wind and rain throughout yesterday.  It was a very productive day all around!

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Bob K. (left) and Alan with ‘Black Stockings’ elephant grass (Pennisetum hybrida) – annual (not hardy)

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busy gazebo garden!

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John (left) and Bobby K. working on one of our giant obelisks to be used in the HLS

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Steve and Vicki decorating trees

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LP Tree Service was on site all day to put up lights for the HLS – thanks guys!

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LP Tree Service was on site all day to put up lights for the HLS – thanks guys!

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meadow rue (Thalictrum sp.) gets some nice fall color too! – perennial

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‘Tamukeyama’ cutleaf Japanese maple (Acer palmatum) – woody tree

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fall color of ‘P.J.M.’ rhododendron (Rhododendron hybrida) is quite nice – woody shrub

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