Field of Science

Botanical Geek Tour #4 - Day 3

Another interesting and quite beautiful day for botanical touring.  Of course it was Mother's Day, and you know flowers sort of attract mothers and kids, so gardens were sure to be busy today.  This AM we did the Morris Arboretum, and everyone was quite impressed; it is a beautiful arboretum with very nice gardens as well.  Morris houses a number of very large trees, and the most impressive specimen was a Kadsura tree (Cercidiphyllum japonica) of an impressive size.  More on Morris later.  Next after a stop at a brew-pub for some lunch the tour took in the Scott Arboretum that occupies the campus grounds of Swarthmore College.  It was eerily quiet as this is after graduation, and campuses never quite seem right largely devoid of people, but without question, this is the most extensive and diverse arboretum to occupy a college/university campus, and in this category, the Phactor has seen a lot of college campuses.  From somewhere the Phactor managed to recognize and remember Torreya, another huge specimen, having only seen a small tree once before.  Unfortunately our timing was off for the magnolias (too late), however some nice specimens of Styrax were seen at several locations.  The concentration of botanical gardens in the Philadelphia area is impressive and probably a greater concentration of botanical gardens does not exist anywhere in the USA.  In addition to the itinerary covered so far, there is the Camden Children's Garden, the L. W. Barton Arboretum, the Philadelphia Zoo (tomorrow), the Shofuso Japanese Garden, the Awbury Arboretum, the Highlands Gardens, the Ambler Arboretum, the Wyck House Garden, Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve, H. Schmeider Arboretum, Hortulus Farem Garden, Tyler Formal Gardens, the Hagley duPont Garden, Nemours Mansion and Gardens, Welkinweir, Wintherthur, the Arboretum at Barnes Foundation, Chanticleer, Haverford College Arboretum, Henry Botanic Garden, Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens, and Tyler Arboretum.  Can't understand how it was that we could only work in 6 in 3 and a half days.  Ah, but tree affectionados take their time.  So details will be forthcoming.  Oh, yes, and there's a bell, liberty, and all the rest too. 

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