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FIELD TRIP!!! Chicago Botanic Garden Is Fantastic All Year Long

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Water feature surrounded by Cardoon and a mixed annual/perennial bed.

Chicago Botanic Garden is an amazing place and this season my gardenShawna and team in golf cart helpers and I got a very special tour around the facility – yep, a personalized golf cart tour. WOW!! In the photo to the right you see me with Cathy DeMarchi and Josette Cook on the golf cart – an awesome garden helper team if there ever was one (thanks ladies!).

The Chicago Botanic Garden is a 385-acre living plant museum featuring 24 distinct display gardens and four natural areas and is truly one of the treasures of the Chicagoland region. At the top of this post, you see a photo-filled with interesting plants – particularly the cardoon which predominate in the garden in front of the water feature – and the botanic gardens burst with these exciting and interesting views at every turn.

A vine arbor between gardens at the Chicago Botanic Garden
Rick Belding discussing the bee hives at Chicago Botanic Garden

Rick Belding, Horticulturist, Regenstein Fruit & Vegetable Garden, spoke with us about the astounding variety of vegetables the Chicago Botanic Gardens grows, as well as showing us the beehives which the facility maintains. We were fascinated that the hives were built into a garden area on a hill which made the hives look just as beautiful as the plants.

We garden-gals loved getting up close and personal to Rick’s heirloom tomato patch. Discussing his creative “tie-up-and-go” tomato supports, he showed us how you can make your own tomato support out of spare things from around your property and not have to spend a dime. Very nice!

Rick Beldings tomato patch at Chicago Botanic Garden
Zinnias and brussel sprouts at the Chicago Botanic Garden
vegetable garden view at Chicago Botanic Garden

We were able to meet with Richard Hawke, Plant Evaluation Manager, who gave us a private tour of the Green Roof Garden on the top of the Plant Science Center.

Many of the plants on the roof are not designated “roof plants”, but are being tested by the gardens as plants that can be used for green roofs – and they are surviving quite successfully. We discovered all different heights and colors of plants as you can see by the below photo.

Green roof display at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
Gorgeous flowers at Chicago Botanic Garden

We ladies had an absolutely amazing time together that day  – many thanks to Katie Szekely, Josette Cook, and Cathy DeMarchi – three great friends and great helpers with my business (seen below with me).

Katie, Shawna, Josette, and Cathy at Chicago Botanic Gardens

Fall is the best time ever to visit the Chicago Botanic Garden – be sure to get out now and all the way through October to see it and nature’s fabulous color change. For an extra special treat visit the Fall Bulb Festival ­ Saturday and Sunday, October 1 and 2. The bulb sale sponsored by the Woman’s Board of the Chicago Horticultural Society sells more than 200 varieties of bulbs and has an open-air market. Visitors can sip cider, wine, and beer while listening to live music and shopping in a marketplace of more than 20 vendors.

A special thank you to all the staff at the Chicago Botanic Garden for giving us this most wonderful personal tour of the gardens. We all loved it and are very grateful for all of your time and consideration!

In accordance with the FTC Guidelines and WOMMA Code of Ethics, I am disclosing that our entrance into the Chicago Botanic Gardens and the tour was no charge.

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  1. I always wanted to visit the chicago botanical gardens thanks for the great tour. I also sell bonsai starter plants. I grow specialty Japanese Maples and Evergreens and a few other specialty items. Most of my plants are geared towards bonsai enthusiasts. I am a good source for starter bonsai.

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