We have reached the time of the year when things are cold, and brown…and dreary. Many of us spend this time looking through gardening magazines and books or scrolling through Pinterest looking for inspiration to strike for the upcoming years projects. But sometimes photos just cannot replace the smell of soil. Let’s be honest the experience of smelling plants and soil, the color and texture of booming flowers up close….nothing beats it. Especially in the depths of winter.
A day trip to a nearby botanical garden can inspire and enlighten the senses. Here are three suggestions that are 3 hours or less to visit. Your gardening soul could use a recharge.
Photo credit: Chromium Photography on Foter.com / CC BY
1 – Brooklyn Botanical Garden:
Located in New York City, about 3-4 hours from us, this little diamond in the rough was first constructed in 1911 and was designed by the Olmsted Brothers (of Central Park fame), two of the most sought after landscape architects on their time. It features both indoor tropical green house structures that burst with color all winter long, and 52 acres of gardens that are beautiful in all seasons. This Botanical Garden also features a large and impressive collection of Bonsai trees. History and horticulture in one stop.
Photo credit: Dick Thompson Sandian on Foter.com / CC BY
2 – Longwood Gardens:
Located in Kennett Square Pennsylvania, Longwood has been a destination for many gardeners since 1798 when the Arboretum was founded. Over 1,077 acres of sprawling gardens, fountains and displays wow gardeners of all levels in the the spring, summer and fall. But did you know they are open all year round? If there is a certain type of plant you are looking to see the Longwood Garden website tracts what is currently or about to bloom. Concerts, events, classes and tours are available all winter for you to explore.
3 – On winter Vacation?
Many people take the opportunity to escape New York for a few days each winter and go someplace warmer. Or perhaps you are a snow bird who travels south for the winter. Either way, add a trip to a botanical garden to your itinerary this winter! Most cities have gardens open year round. Take the time before your trip to research what gardens are close to where you will be staying. The warm sights and sounds in the greenhouse can carry you over until spring and supply you with photos to look at again when things seem cold and dreary.
4 – Closer to home?
Staying closer to home? Did you know that Binghamton University has a lovely set of three greenhouses? Open all year? Call for hours and appointment or to schedule a tour: (607) 777-2502. Three different types of green houses are available for tour (especially if you have a group such as a garden club). This is a teaching greenhouse as well so as a bonus you will get to see what the students have been working on. Check it out! You will not be disappointed.