Tour Winter Garden at Arboretum

Meet at the Visitor’s Center @ 12:45
Tour begins at 1:00 (no charge)
I look like my photo in a brown coat and red scarf.

Washington Park Arboretum
2300 Arboretum Drive E
Seattle, WA 98112
[masked]

The Arboretum is a hidden gem on the shores of Lake Washington. Its 230 acres are a dynamic assortment of plants found nowhere else. The Graham Visitors Center contains an information desk and a gift shop.

The Winter Garden is in “peak bloom” in January.

Joseph A. Witt Winter Garden

A short walk from the the Graham Visitors Center via the Hillside Trail, the Joseph A. Witt Winter Garden features a central lawn encircled by tall cedars and firs and a tremendous assortment of smaller trees, shrubs and perennials. This garden is a real treat from late November through the end of March, when much of the rest of the park is quiet and subdued.

What makes a plant suitable for a "winter garden”? Splashes of color are welcome. You can't miss the bright yellow blossoms of Mahonia 'Arthur Menzies' and Chinese witchhazel (Hamamelis mollis) or the bright pink blooms of Cyclamen coum. Shrubby dogwoods show off red and yellow bark, while small orange-red fruit covers the winterberry (Ilex verticillata ‘Afterglow’).

Some plants, such as sweet box (Sarcococca) and fragrant daphne (Daphe odora 'Aureo-marginata'), are selected for fragrance. Many plants such as hellebores (Helleborus), dogwoods (Cornus) and the silk tassel (Garrya x issaquahensis) feature elegant, delicate and interesting blooms. Attractive foliage is a plus, whether it is evergreen like the rhododendron’s, spotted like the pulmonaria’s, or subject to change. The William Penn barberry’s (Berberis x gladwynensis 'William Penn') dark leaves turn bronze-red in winter.

The garden also showcases plants with striking forms. Among the most unusally shaped is Harry Lauder's Walking Stick (Corylus avellana 'Contorta'). Its branches and twigs curl and twist above low-growing hebes and heathers, a pairing which gives the bed rich visual texture.

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  • Teresa

    Thanks for the photos Mark! And here's more...

    February 4, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Had such an amazing time, thank you for organizing this. I will definitely be checking out the Arboretum's favorite plants tour next month.

    1 · February 3, 2013

  • Barbara

    Very informative. Beautiful walk. Great venture.

    1 · February 3, 2013

  • Sherry

    Great tour. Well informed, funny tour guide.

    1 · February 3, 2013

  • Teresa

    I always love the Arboretum tours. Thanks everyone who showed up - not sure how many of you were Meet-Up folks, but talked to many of you. Tea was nice too. I'm sorry some of you couldn't find it. The address is a bit tricky. Maybe next time...

    February 3, 2013

  • Julie

    Would love to come but my GPS can't find it and neither can I.

    February 3, 2013

  • Andrea

    I thought this event was re-scheduled for Sunday Feb 3 (not Sat as your last email header indicated). Can you clarify the date. Maybe I missed an earlier email.

    January 30, 2013

    • Teresa

      Did I say Sat??? No no it's Sunday Feb 3rd!!! Just what I don't need is another confusing date....

      January 30, 2013

  • Elaine

    I think we should postpone it just so we can see if we can make it up to 100 comments on this event. ...Not really. But missing pre-game isn't a bad way to go. Thanks for pointing that out George.

    1 · January 11, 2013

  • George Liu

    As was pointed out if all you want to do is watch the Superbowl and not any of the pre-game show you can most likely participate in this meetup and also see the game which starts at 3:30 PST. I will probably do this: skip pregame, do the arboretum tour, and watch the game assuming the Seahawks are in.

    1 · January 9, 2013

  • Elaine

    Even though I may bail for the Superbowl, it sounds like there a enough people that want to go on Superbowl day that you should just go. There's always something. And it's not like any of us couldn't go on our own. There's also the weather factor too.

    1 · January 9, 2013

  • C. Ken R.

    Terresa, It looks like by the time we make it, you'll need to change the tile of the event from winter to summer as approaching spring, a lot of people's allergies will kick in and they'll request postponement!

    January 9, 2013

  • Teresa

    Okay okay, I'm thinking of changing the date again - really hate to keep doing it, but it seems the Superbowl is a pretty big deal. Forgive me for not knowing this : ) Probably will reschedule for Feb 10th. Any thoughts?

    1 · January 8, 2013

    • Teresa

      Thanks George. Normally I just go with what works for me and whoever can make it makes it. I just don't get football, so thought maybe I should check in about it. Sorry for all the comments everyone. Feb 3 it remains.

      1 · January 8, 2013

    • Jonathan Melusky

      I agree. I have a DVR for recording sports etc...so that I can watch them at a later time when there are no cool real life events scheduled. Besides traffic is awesome Sunday during an away football game. (^:=

      2 · January 8, 2013

  • Alan

    February 10 has the Grammy Awards is the Chinese New Year. And the Los Angeles Lakers play the Miami Heat. :)

    January 8, 2013

    • Teresa

      Ha-ha!!! You're all making me crazy now : )

      January 8, 2013

  • susan p.

    I think Feb.10 works. Grammy awards are evening, Lakers and Heat are not Seattle teams.

    January 8, 2013

  • Linda K

    Poor Teresa, I'm with Katrina on this. Maybe it's football season, and there are some that are tied to their television sets every Sunday - d0 we need to work around their schedules?

    1 · January 8, 2013

  • Katrina O

    Here's a contrary vote from someone who couldn't really care less about football … just to let you know there are others out there! !

    2 · January 8, 2013

  • Ada Taylor

    That's fine with me.

    January 8, 2013

  • susan p.

    I will also be canceling if the Seahawks make it. That's my rule of thumb if a home team makes it all the way to the finals. That doesn't happen often.

    January 8, 2013

  • Teresa

    I'm so sorry to throw you all off, but after speaking to the Arboretum staff today, I've been informed that the focus on this coming Sunday's tour is on Ancient Trees and not on the Winter Garden. This is not what I was told a few months ago. I apologize. So I'm changing the date of this event to February, when their focus is in fact mainly on the Winter Garden. Gosh.....

    1 · January 7, 2013

    • Teresa

      How fun! So many thoughts on gardens and football...

      January 8, 2013

    • Elaine

      I"m holding off canceling...but if the SeaHawks or the 49ers make it I'll probably watch the game...maybe will anyhow - for the commercials!

      January 8, 2013

  • George Liu

    Just so that it is no surprise to everyone, Feb. 3 is when Superbowl is played, and at this time the Seahawks are still contenders.

    January 7, 2013

    • Teresa

      Gosh - I'm sorry. Out of touch with that culture...

      1 · January 7, 2013

  • susan p.

    That's fine. I'm glad you checked.

    1 · January 7, 2013

  • Jonathan

    How strict is the attendance number? Could I just show up? This is my first meetup with this group and my experience with other groups is that there are always a small amount of no-shows. Thanks!

    January 7, 2013

    • Teresa

      So.....this is a public tour and so of course I can't control who attends. Anyone can attend. BUT as I've made this a meet-up event I put a limit on it. If indeed 45 people showed up, it would overwhelm the docent, but in reality this meet-up has a high no-show rate. Something I can't control. All I can do is ask people to be as sincere as possible when they rsvp. ALSO please know that this tour happens every Sunday. So you can all go any time.

      January 7, 2013

    • Jonathan

      Thank you.

      January 7, 2013

  • Jonathan Melusky

    Hi Jonathan, I have taken this tour before in the winter so I changed my rsvp to no, so you can go. (^:= I did not know there was a limit, but I guess they don't want the tour guide to get hoarse by yelling to a group of people too large.

    cheers, Jonathan

    January 7, 2013

    • Jonathan

      Hi Jonathan, wow... that is extremely nice but you really don't need to do that! I'll be fine if I can't hear everything the tour guide is saying, just visiting the space and meeting some new people are what interested me the most. If it truly is a problem I'll visit another time on my own.

      January 7, 2013

    • Jonathan

      After reading Teresa's earlier comment it looks like it won't be a problem for either of us!

      January 7, 2013

  • Teresa

    Totally fun new photo George!

    November 28, 2012

    • George Liu

      You mean the photo of Wenlock (the Olympic mascot) and me hamming it up next to the Tower of London?

      1 · November 28, 2012

  • Teresa

    If anyone is interested we can go for tea and munchies after the tour at the Essential Baking Co. on E. Madison (2719 E. Madison St/328-0078). Just follow Lake Washington Blvd out to Madison, turn right and it’s just a short distance up the hill on the left.

    1 · November 17, 2012

40 went

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