An Epic Roadtrip

Terry, Big John and I hit the road early up to Madison for a “retreat” to see some other gardens and chat with other horticulturists.  Due to scheduling issues, the rest of the staff couldn’t make it which was a bummer as we had a blast.  Cindy, Larry, Nolan and Trevor held down the fort and I know we had a great volunteer turnout as well at RBG today.
The photos in this blog are in the reverse of what we experienced today but we certainly had an Epic roadtrip which actually ended at the Epic Systems Intergalactic Headquarters in Verona, WI where we had an excellent tour from Michael and Will.  The tour included the majority of campus and many of the buildings which have interesting architecture and interior design with each building becoming an “experience”!  The tour was excellent and the grounds were beautiful.  We enjoyed the setting and it was nice to learn a bit about this company which is seeing significant growth and now has over 9,000 employees.
 Michael, Big John, Terry and Will (left to right)
 there was lots of beautiful art around the grounds too


 Sedum combination on green roof (above parking garage)
neat “fire” theme!





 neat tree house
 beautiful theme gardens (above and below)



Our second stop of the day was at Olbrich Botanical Gardens (Madison, WI) where Jeff E. met us and gave us a nice orientation.  Jeff can be seen above in the blue.  We also chatted with Samantha and Christian; both grounds staff at OBG.  We enjoyed the visit and saw great plants, combinations and the high level of maintenance was apparent to the three of us.  We had a nice lunch after our visit to OBG and appreciate their hospitality which we’ll return when they come and visit us this Friday!


 Thai Pavilion at OBG








Our first stop this morning was at Allen Centennial Gardens (ACG) on the UW-Madison Campus.  Above are (left to right) Terry, Benjamin and Big John.  Benjamin is the Director of ACG and started back in early May.  We had a great chat with him and enjoyed the gardens which looked wonderful.  Oddly enough, Benjamin is a transplant from Fernwood Botanic Garden (Niles, MI) which was also my former place of employment before RBG.  We also saw Ed G. who is a prominent volunteer at ACG with a heavy role in the alpine garden.  It was a super day for sure.  The photos below are from ACG although the last one was a fun shot at Epic with the boys.