Wednesday, July 10, 2013

An ABC of herbs from the Klehm Arboretum

In June on one of the fine days we had before the rains started, my husband and I decided to visit the Klehm Arboretum in Rockford, IL.

There were several things there I just loved.  Beyond the experimental garden where they had different plantings and garden ornament which I always love to tour, there was a maze garden and children's garden of ABCs.

I loved this garden because it was a mix of common names and scientific names and they did not even stretch too far to find something for each letter.

For E they used Echinacea, it was too soon to tell it if was the purple variety or not, but that was my guess.  For F they chose Floss Flower Ageratum houstonianum.  I guess I never knew this name for this plant wish is a "Miller," like Dusty Miller, but then I saw it at the Rotary International Garden in Janesville, identified with this same name, so now I think this may be a Midwestern name for it and I still harken back to my Ohio roots when iidentifying plants by common names.

H was a lovely planting of  Hen & Chicks in a ceramic pot with the checks spreading down to the ground.

J was a plant I had never heard of called Jewels of Opar.  What I discovered was it is Talinum paniculatum,  a succulent subshrub in the purslane family. Or in the vernacular, a species of Portulaca or Moss Roses.

Lamb's Ear stood up for L, with Marigolds for M.  Nepeta (catnip) was used for N and  with O being Oenothera or Sundrops.

Windflower represented W, but I was too early to see it flowering.It has a small white pointed five petal flower  Anemone nemorosa is thought to be the flower the Adonis turns into after having been torn to pieces by a boar in Ovid's 'Venus and Adonis.'

R was a stand by perennial Rudbeckia, I suspect the usual Black Eyed Susans will be blooming here soon.

X was Xanthoriza simplicissima, Yellow Root, a shrubbery that you cannot even see in this photo because it is is so small.
But I found it in another image....

for Y they used the herb Yarrow and Z was for Zinna, one of my favorite flowers.....

The Klehm Arboretum is 155 acres of trees, plants, shrubs and flowers nestled into the south side of Rockford Illinois, at 2715 S. Main Street.  During the Summer they are open 9 am to 8 pm and the admission is very reasonable.  I took more than 100 photos during our trip, so I guarantee there is more to see that what I have shared here.

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