I bet you thought this post was going to be about garden bloggers didn’t you? Nah, it’s not that simple.
Although I’m having a great time seeing all of my garden blogger friends both old and new, I want to show you my other peeps, the prairie meadow plants of the Lurie Garden.
Yesterday, we boarded the train to the Chicago Botanic Garden, and it was big and burly, reminding me of the men (I refuse to think of the women as either) who helped turn Chicago into a bustling commercial enterprise in the late 1800s. There was so much to see. I walked much of it although I did miss the train garden. Darn it. So much to see and so little time.
After riding the train back into the middle of the city, we hoofed it from the Ogilivie train station to Millennium Park. After all of that walking (and that from the two days prior), my blisters had blisters. I, along with others, began to wonder if I needed to see the Lurie Garden. I’m such an introvert. I gazed down Madison street, longingly, wanting a hot cuppa English tea and a comfy chair in the hotel lobby where I could tweet and post.
However, I hung in there, and I’m so glad I did.
Up some stairs, past the performance stage, we entered another world. Millennium Park is in the center of the city and within is the Lurie Garden designed by Gustafson Guthrie Nichol Ltd, Piet Oudolf and Robert Israel.
If I remember correctly, four different types of blue, meadow sage, Salvia x sylvestris ‘Blue Hill’, ‘Wesuwe’, ‘May Night’ and ‘Rugen’ were planted to create a river-like swath through the prairie meadow. After the plants bloom, the gardeners shear the sages nearly to the ground, and within a month, the river grows and blooms again. In Oklahoma, we only need to remove the blooms of the salvias and sages to keep them blooming continuously from spring until the end of fall. Just one of the differences in how our climates grow certain plants.
Honeybees and other pollinators covered the blooming prairie meadow. It was astounding how attracted they were to the sages, and it reinforced my belief that we need to provide nectar and pollen rich plants for these tiniest of creatures.
I only hope my photos can capture even a portion of what I saw.
These plants are my “peeps” because they reminded me of those prairie plants which grow so exceedingly well in Oklahoma. A new one for me is shown above. I first saw it in Mr. McGregor’s Daughter’s garden, and I want to try it at home.
The next post will be more about the folks I met and saw, I promise, and here’s a photo of Pam from Digging taken that day. Pam’s blog was one of the first I read, and it was a thrill to meet her last year at the Austin Spring Fling. It was great to renew our friendship in Chicago.
Dee, wasn’t the Lurie an amazing experience? It was a veritable living, growing painting. I’m so glad I was able to see it with you and other congenial garden bloggers. Here’s to many more such happy events!
Cindy, MCOK´s last blog post..Watch Out, Chicago, Here We Come!
Yes, Cindy, it was. I’ll remember it all my life.~~Dee
mss @ Zanthan Gardens
The river of sage is stunning. I especially like the contrast of the grasses and other wild low plants against the geometric trellises (?) and, of course, with the city rising in the background.
mss @ Zanthan Gardens´s last blog post..GBBD 200905: May 2009
Dee, My dear we almost have the same post~~it has to be our Midwestern souls! I loved the Lurie Garden best…it calls to me, but there will be no removing of trees in order to have a river of salvia! I am so glad you listed the salvias, they were truly delightful and I missed hearing how they sheared them for rebloom. It was wonderful to spend time with you and meet your family…gail
Gail´s last blog post..Chicago~~A River Runs Through It
Hi Dee, what fun you all had! I’ve enjoyed visiting everyones blog to see photos and read about the goings-on. Your photos of the ‘river’ are stunning.
Hi Dee, I’ve really been enjoying ‘meeting’ everyone through your blog and others! It’s been fun just being able to read about and see photos of part of your visit there. The river of purple sage is breathtaking!
Hi Dee, this was an excellent explanation of what happened this past weekend and your photos of the Lurie, (and Pam) and just splendid. That was a lot of walking, talking and eating, in between viewing so many gardens. The prairie smoke has to be tried here in TN, even though we are not exactly a prairie. Such a treat to meet your family too.
Frances´s last blog post..Viola Beauty Pageant 2009
I love love loved that prairie smoke! I wonder if it would grow in Austin?
Thanks for sharing your photo of me. I generally try to stay behind the camera, but that one does show how much fun I’m having, and I’m still clutching my goodies from the Chicago Botanic Garden. Your photos are glorious, my dear.
Pam/Digging´s last blog post..Best of Friends daylily
Dee — it was great to see you again and get to visit. Your shots of the Lurie are beautiful – you really captured the essence of the garden and its spectacular colors.
Diana´s last blog post..Garden dinner…
Dee, it was great to meet you this weekend! The Lurie garden was beautiful; we even made a second trip Sunday morning to see it again (when our legs weren’t so tired). Your photos are great, and you’ve remembered so many more details than I. But seeing it in person was breathtaking. I’m still coming down from sensory overload–what a wonderful weekend!
Rose´s last blog post..Garden Muse Day: Chicago!
nola at the alamo
Oh, I can tell you all are having too much fun! All that sage is spectacular. Can’t wait to see the rest of your photos.
nola at the alamo´s last blog post..Going To Wal-Mart
Your photos are grand! Amazing, the garden right there in the city. What beauty! People are amazing, too, to design and grow such, just a miracle. Thanks so much for giving me a lovely armchair tour!
CurtissAnn´s last blog post..The Winner is…and the Great Pantyhose Poll
Wow, what beautiful gardens and plants. I would like to try that geum, too. I’m glad you went instead of having that cup of tea.
Kim´s last blog post..Shenanigans
Annie in Austin
What a wonderful place for those who can’t get enough purple, Dee – count me in that group!
It’s been so much fun following your tweets and now seeing your lovely photos!
Annie in Austin´s last blog post..Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, May 2009
The river of Sage is amazing, but I am in love with the Prairie Smoke. I am glad that everyone had such a good time, and I am especially glad you hung in there to experience the garden and report back to all of us who are enjoying the Spring Fling vicariously through all the lovely posts.
Jenny B´s last blog post..Armchair Review
Jenny, I found myself in love with it too. I only hope it will grow in my garden.~~Dee
Lisa at Greenbow
It was fun to meet you Dee. The Lurie was an amazing sight with that river of blue.
Lisa, it was lovely to finally meet you too.~~Dee
Mr. McGregor's Daughter
I’ll dig you some Geum triflorum this fall. I’m sure it would look great in Rosehaven. It was great to see you again!
Mr. McGregor’s Daughter´s last blog post..A Grand Day Out at the Chicago Botanic Garden Part I
Why thank you, MMD. That’s so nice of you and after you sent me the beautiful plants this spring. Aren’t bloggers the best? Thanks for all you did to make Spring Fling a success. Great to see you too.~~Dee
Oh yes, you girls are all hanging right now! I know you’ll have so much fun. I can already tell Pam is. Love the photos. Take many many of them!
Brenda Kula´s last blog post..The Mess In My Yard
We wish you were here too.~~Dee
Wow, the river of Salvias was amazing, and your pictures more than captured the magic.
Thank you, Katie. It was great to meet you and Chris this week. Hope to see you again next year.~~Dee
Fabulous, thanks for showing us .
Carol, May Dreams Gardens
I went back to the Lurie this morning before I left Chicago to see “your peeps” and mine. It was one of the garden highlights of the trip! It was great to see everyone and get caught up!
Carol, May Dreams Gardens´s last blog post..Step Back and See the Gardens
Kathy from Cold Climate Gardening
Less can indeed be more. I was thinking how many different kinds of plants I’d try to cram into that space. By limiting their plant selections but using a lot of them, the designers created a garden with tremendous dramatic impact.
Kathy from Cold Climate Gardening´s last blog post..Camassia and Trollius blooming
Wonderful river of Salvias! Thank you for all the details–and keep having fun!
Daffodil Planter´s last blog post..Vote for your favorite summer herb
Brit' Gal Sarah
Well guess where I’ll be sure to go on my fast approaching visit after seeing this! Gorgeous, glad you’re having fun.
Brit’ Gal Sarah´s last blog post..My favourite summer spot