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Photo by Vienna Volante.

Celebrate at the Arb

This final week of 2011 is a special time for reflecting on the past, catching up with old friends and relaxing - whether it's cracking open a new bestseller or taking a robust walk through the woods. Here at the Arboretum, our "Making Spirits Bright" season continues through Jan. 2 with the Great Hall of Storybook Trees and "Grinch"-inspired gingerbread display. Also planned this week: Arboretum Outdoors with Hoigaards! Learn Nordic walking techniques on free guided treks with equipment and instruction compliments of Hoigaard's, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 30. Weekend Family Fun: On Saturday, Dec. 31, learn about the "Gifts from the Bees." On Sunday, Jan. 1, it's all about "Prehistoric Plants." All sessions run from noon to 4 p.m. (drop-in basis) at the Learning Center. Free with Arboretum admission. Our Ar-BRR-retum Day on Dec. 31 is typically a "free admission day" for those arriving with cross-country skis or snowshoes, but it will be cancelled due to insufficient snow. Additionally, the Arboretum will be open New Year's Day.

Photo by Julie Weisenhorn







Meyer-Deats Conservatory

Looking for a little burst of color to brighten your life?  Check out the Meyer-Deats Conservatory in the Snyder Building.  Feast your eyes on exquisite orchids, bird-of-paradise, lovely bougainvillea and more!   The conservatory also features permanent bromeliad and cactus collections, as well as ferns and other tropical and sub-tropical plants, plus benches for relaxing and taking it all in.  Our colleague Julie Weisenhorn captured this beautiful image (at left) while visiting the conservatory last week.  Ahhh! 


RX For Avoiding Winter Plant Damage

As we approach what are typically the coldest weeks of the year, the lack of snow can result in greater winter injury to plants. Fortunately, the temperatures have been mild, but if we have extended periods of sub-zero temperatures before we have snow cover, it will cause problems. Past open winters with very low temperatures have resulted in root damage to dwarf apple trees at the Horticultural Research Center and loss of perennials that are borderline-hardy in Minnesota. It also can injure or cause frost-heaving for fall planted perennials and bulbs.

But you can do something to lessen the damage. Arboretum staffer Peter Moe says it is not too late to spread woodchips, shredded bark or clean straw on areas where you planted bulbs or perennials or over any borderline hardy plants. It is also a good idea to spread woodchip mulch in wide circles under fruit trees, shrub roses, evergreens and other woody plants. Don't pile woodchip mulch up around tree trunks and make woodchip volcanoes. Instead, spread mulch evenly - about 6" thick - and widely under your plants.


Looking Ahead...

Join us for the Winter Hearty sampler event on Sunday, Jan. 29, from 2 to 5 p.m. Enjoy traditional and not-so-traditional seasonal cuisine from local restaurants and cafes. Plus brews and wine. $40 per person. All proceeds benefit the Arboretum. Register here.

By Saturday, Jan. 28, we'll surely have snow! Just in time for the Romp to Stomp Breast Cancer 5K snowshoe event. Have fun and benefit a worthy cause. Click here for more information and to register.

Beat the blues - with a delicious evening out! Check out the Winter Gourmet Dinner on Friday, Jan. 13, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. A sumptuous multicourse meal with wine pairings. $65 member/$70 non-member. Click here to register.

"Explore, Experience, Remember," the annual Arboretum Photographers Society exhibit & sale, opens Friday, Jan. 6, in the Restaurant Gallery. It's an amazing celebration of the beauty of nature and the Arboretum. The show continues through May 27.

Looking for more January fun? Take advantage of our January "visit voucher." Receive a same-day voucher (equal to paid gate admission) that can be redeemed at the Arboretum Restaurant, Gift Store, Learning Center, Membership Counter and more. Click here for "31 Reasons to Visit the Arboretum in January."

It's not too early to think about registering your child for Arboretum summer day camps. Registration opens Sunday, Jan. 1. Click here for more information.

—Remember the Arboretum in your year-end giving! Call 952-443-1432 or click here. Thank you for your support. Happy New Year!

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