Friday, October 27, 2023

Back to NYC and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Part 2

We're back at Brooklyn Botanic Garden (Part 1 here)—in the conservatory complex—and I've just walked into the Desert Pavilion. As nice as it was to be in that environment—and as much as I love that it exists for those who haven't made it to the desert—I didn't spend much time there (because I have been to the desert many times and this small sampling didn't thrill me). 

I did stop to appreciate this Euphorbia avasmontana, it was HUGE!

Great small spikes too.

Now into the Tropical Pavilion.

Back in early July I mounted a bromeliad on a trunk of one of my tetrapanax, when I took it down last week I was thrilled to find it had grown more than a dozen roots and was firmly attached to the trunk. I hated to pry it free, but unlike these guys it' wasn't living a posh conservatory life.

To the final area before we head back outdoors; I found this sign explaining the Warm Temperate Pavilion Collection interesting. Who describes coastal California as having cold wet winters? That sounds more like Western Oregon, which should definitely be on this list, and we're just a touch over the 45th parallel.

Pinus maximartinezii from west-central Mexico.

I'm not much of a conifer lover and especially not pines, but I thought this guy was pretty cute.

And you know I love me some pyrrosia.

This Tetrapanax papyrifer was interesting, the leaves so different in shape and texture from the ones I see growing outdoors here in Portland.

I turned a few of them over to see what the back looked like and found these evil little monsters, mealy bug. I suddenly feel the need to wash my hands.

Back outside and another glance at the pool before heading on.

This visit took place on a Friday afternoon in late October, I nearly had the garden to myself. Visiting the NY Botanical Garden on the following Sunday was an entirely different experience however. That garden, with it's pumpkin carving demo and piles of hay bales and decorative gourds for photo taking opportunities, was packed with families.

Yucca rostrata and opuntia, at the entrance to the rock garden (behind me).

More opuntia; Opuntia humifusa. These hard to see since they're flopped over—a cool-weather coping mechanism.

I thought they were trying for a ruin garden here, but no. It's their walled garden.

I was a little blown away by the size of this gnarled old Poncirus trifoliata (Citrus trifoliata).

Gomphrena haageana 'Qis Red'

This allée of scarlet oak trees is one of two that was planted in remembrance of the events of 9/11 and those who lost their lives that day. I bet it's quite shocking when all of those oaks have colored up.

Now I'm making my way back over to the Brooklyn Museum which is located right next door to the Botanic Garden, an excellent pairing to keep both Andrew and I occupied. Autumn colors a blaze...

Isn't this combo dreamy? I'm going to try to replicate it in my garden.

Finally, a few images from the Brooklyn Museum's sculpture garden and a replica of the Statue of Liberty. 

Part of the building itself.

From the museum website: "The Steinberg Family Sculpture Garden, formerly the Frieda Schiff Warburg Memorial Sculpture Garden, was created in 1966 as a space to display objects from our pioneering collection of architectural sculptures rescued from New York City demolition sites. This remarkable collection, largely composed of works by anonymous craftsmen dating to the period between 1880 and 1910, presents a sampling of architectural ornament characteristic of buildings still standing in the older parts of New York City."

The nine keystones came from the Park Lane Hotel which was demolished in 1966.

The lady beneath the keystones once stood beside a huge clock above an entrance to the original Penn Station in Manhattan. She's called Night and "holds a drooping poppy." The terminal was demolished in 1963 and the sculpture was retrieved from landfill in the New Jersey Meadowlands.

Double Pegasus (x2, there are 4 (or 8) total) from the Coney Island High Pressure Pumping Station.

Out in front of the museum now and I thought you might be interested in how this patch of unused lawn has been transformed since my visit: read all about the lawn turned meadow on Gardenista.

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  1. Re the reference to coastal California and "cold wet winters": everything is relative ;) I love that fall color - and the open windows within walls. The Brooklyn Museum' content sounds interesting.

    1. Indeed, everything is relative—which is why I found it so strange that NYC was calling coastal CA cold and wet. I mean come on.... NY knows cold and wet!

  2. Never did make it to the Museum so it's nice to get a sense of it. That ammonia with the red tree is amazing.

  3. Architectural salvage, you know I'm a fan. And how gratifying that even a tiny piece of Penn Station was salvaged -- "Night" is representing! What a beauty...

    1. I cannot imagine anyone thinking that beautiful bit of sculpture belonged in a landfill!!!

  4. Thank you for this. Actually thank you for all of your posts. I enjoy them all so much. What is the plant with the black seeds in the picture with the Amsonia?

    1. That is blackberry lily, Iris domestica. Aren't those seeds fabulous!?

  5. Fantastic idea to rescue architectural sculptures. "Night" with the drooping poppy is so lovely, it would have been a shame to lose her.
    The Amsonia paired with black berries is wonderful. I feel I should know what those berries are...

    1. The berries are blackberry lily, Iris domestica.

  6. I wonder why so many places struggle with desert displays. Sometimes they almost appear abandoned as if the staff doesn't have the time or expertise to take care of them.

    Love the old style of statuary. Wish it would come back into style.

    1. It's not that the desert area was bad, it just wasn't somewhere I felt like I needed to spend much time.

  7. So many of those plant combinations or garden vignettes are so well-designed and absolutely amazing. Their "warm temperate collection" description seems a mixed bag, though - as you say much of California isn't cold and wet in winter, it's a warmer part of your same summer-dry climate. IE summer-dry gets warmer from Seattle to San Diego, where you have warm temperate temperatures, but LA has subtropical temperatures.

    1. Yes... it really is an odd description. I would have expected it if I was a in a garden in Europe, but not in NYC.


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