Saturday, June 13, 2009

Chicago's Lincoln Park Conservatory

Yes, I'm still blogging about Spring Fling. I know I'm a procrastinator extraordinaire, but the fact that I've still got a few posts to go before I'm finished reporting on Spring Fling should be evidence that we spent an action-packed three days in the Windy City. I think I'm still exhausted from it all, two weeks later!

Lincoln Park

Saturday was the busiest day, beginning with the Rick Bayless garden. The organizers of Spring Fling had chartered a bus to take us from one place to another, beginning at our hotel (Club Quarters Central Loop) and I can't thank them enough for doing that. Mom and I would have surely missed half of the planned stops if we'd had to go it on our own.

One of the destinations of the day was in Lincoln Park, where we had some time to explore the Lincoln Park Conservatory and surrounding area. Constructed between 1890 and 1895, the Conservatory was built at a time when the public had a general fascination with nature. It was designed to both showcase exotic plants as well as to provide a place for the city to grow plants it needed for landscaping the city parks.

The Conservatory consists of four rooms - Palm House, Fern Room, Orchid House, and Show House.

With apologies to those on dial-up, here are some views from the Conservatory:

Fabulous use of red as an accent.

Lots of graphic lines here!

I loved the fabric screen hanging across the room. The flowers are pieces of fabric sandwiched between the sheer white panels.

The tropical Crotons really know how to light up a room!

This Clerodendron Clerodendrum Rotheca always fascinates me with its delicate blooms of blue. (Why oh why do the taxonomists keep messing with us??)

The Fern Room

'City Lights' Water Lily (Nymphaea)

Look at the hanging Tahitian Bridal Veil (Gibasis geniculata)! It was at least seven feet long, top to bottom, if not more. I grew one of these way back when I was in college, but it never looked like this!

Beautiful Bromeliad

Wall of white Phalaenopsis


Brassavola 'Jiminy Cricket'


Bougainvillea is one of my favorite tropicals.

African Iris (Dietes iridioides)

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis
When I say red is my favorite color, I mean this shade of red.

Bougainvillea silhouetted against the glass ceiling of the Conservatory

There's also a Conifer Garden on the west and south sides, outside the Conservatory, which somehow I missed. I think I was worried about not having enough time to visit the nearby Lily Pool, so once we left the Conservatory, Mom and I headed for that. But not until I'd popped into the adjacent Lincoln Park Zoo for some Dippin' Dots. Mmmmm!

Over to the Lily Pooh next...


Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Wow Kylee, that Conservatory is really a nice place and you got some great photos. I love the one of just different textures of foliage and the red blooms are really nice looking. Great shots, looking forward to more.

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Hi Kylee, everyone should post at their own pace and frequency and not worry about it. For example, I only did one post on SF, and I never manage to remember/get it together for most meme-type posts. As my mom might say "Jeder wie er kann" (literally "each as s/he can" but maybe firuatively
"each to his/her own"). :) BTW, I've gathered a contingent of Ann Arbor gardeners who want to visit Toledo Bot--I'll send you an email for planning!

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

Thank you, Kylee! It's a good thing that I wasn't on that tour - you'd lose me in the Fern room!
The Hibiscus texture is amazing!

Katie said...

"Bougainvillea is one of my favorite tropicals."


I like how you've approached each of these review posts. It was a little overwhelming to see what everyone was posting right after the trip. :D

Cindy Garber Iverson said...

Wow! I'm always surprised to see so many plants that in my yard growing in a conservatory. I have to be reminded of how lucky I am to grow water lily, taro, bougainvillea, African iris, and hibiscus outside and not have to take them in during the winter.


Victoria Williams said...

Just gorgeous! Thanks for sharing these great photos. I'm so jealous of their love lies bleeding, mine is still just inches tall.

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