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tapping maple tree

Sweet Maple SyrupComing Right Up!

Recently, a team of eight hardy souls installed the tubing and tapped the trees on the Arboretum's south hill in preparation for the collection of that sweet treat we all know and love. Over 100 Sugar Maples were successfully tapped. Now that the trees have been tapped and the lines carefully checked, all we need to do is wait! Changes in the weather will eventually cause the right pressure to build, and at that time the trees will provide its sweet Maple sapjust in time for the annual Sugarbush Pancake Brunch, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., & Maple Syrup Tours, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m., on March 24 & 25. Tickets are $9 members/ $11.50 non-members (ages 8 and older); $6 for children 4-7 and free for ages 3 and younger. Purchase tickets in the Oswald Visitor Center during the event.

Be sure to keep up with the happenings on the Maple Syrup Season on the Nature Notes blog!

Spring Expo 2012
Photo courtesy David
Cavagnaro and Seed Savers Exchange






beer dinner



Photo by Tracy Ann Walsh.

Spring Expo 2012 This Weekend!

Three days of discussion, lectures, book-singings and networking among gardening enthusiasts! Biodiversity, heirloom plants and the latest and best gardening advice will be the hot topics at the Arboretum's Spring Expo 2012 Growing to Learn sessions planned for Friday-Sunday, March 9-11.

Sessions. Friday, March 9: seed saving and heirloom plants with speakers from Seed Savers Exchange. Saturday, March 10: book-signings and talks with authors Jeff Gillman, Meleah Maynard ("Decoding Gardening Advice"), David Deardorff and Kathryn Wadsworth ("What's Wrong with My Vegetable Garden?") and Chuck Chapman ("Irises for the Cold Climate"). Sunday, March 11: Lynn Steiner (native plants), U of M horticulture professor Dr. Mary Meyer (grasses and sedges), Dan Miller (garden pests) and Luke Haggerty (fruit-bearing shrubs and trees). $35 members/ $45 non-members for 3-day pass or $20 members/$25 non-members per day. Register here or call 952-443-1422.

Displays & Exhibits, March 10-11. Plant societies and vendors will have displays showcasing the newest gardening trends and products. Free with Arboretum admission.


Winter Beer Dinner

Be sure to attend the Winter Beer Dinner on Friday, March 16: 6:30 p.m. reception, dinner at 7 p.m., Snyder Building Fireplace Room. Enjoy four hearty courses accompanied by a variety of beers from Mantorville Brewery. Menu: Reception appetizers and beer, lemon thyme chicken satay with orzo, duck pastrami Caesar salad, braised lamb shank with roasted vegetables and cannellini bean puree, choc mousse profiterole with maple cracklins and spiced candied pistachios. $65 member/$70 non-member. Reserve at 612-626-3951 or online.


Current and Upcoming Exhibits, Classes and Events

—Living with Orchids Exhibit. March 30-April 29. A display of exquisite orchids from Orchids Limited greenhouse, presented by the W. Duncan & Nivin MacMillan Foundation. For a sneak preview, check out the Orchids Preview Event on Thursday, March 29 from 5:30-8 p.m. Tickets are $30, includes gate fee, one drink ticket and butler-passed hors d'oeuvres. For more information and to register, click here.

—Mill City Farmers Market @ the Arb. Mark your calendar for Saturday, March 17, when the Visitor Center will be transformed into a bustling marketplace of locally produced, quality food items. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. visitors can shop for everything from pickles to maple syrup to baked goods and artisan cheeses from Mill City Farmers Market vendors.

—Summer Fun for Kids! Get growing this summer with the Arboretum and register today! Select from: Green Fun for the Young: Pea Pods or our new "Out To Play!" for ages 2-5; Weekly Children's Garden for ages 5-14; Summer Daycamps for ages 5-14; Guided Adventures for Kids for one hour group programs. For more information or to register for a program, click here or call 952-443-1422.

—Weekend Family Fun: Spuds and Buds. Noon-4 p.m. Saturdays & Sundays in March. Learning Center. Learn about the world's most popular vegetable in this fun, hands-on session. Free with gate admission.

—Wild Green Things: Art of Anne Ophelia Dowden. There's still time to see this exhibition, running through May 2. Visitors may enjoy works by the distinguished botanical artist and author, Anne Ophelia Dowden.  The display can be seen in the Snyder Building and the Anderson Horticultural Library. Click here for more information.

—Top 10 Plants. The clock is ticking...submit your nominations for the Arboretum's "10 Plants that Changed Minnesota" initiative by April 15. Is it the succulent Honeycrisp-bearing apple tree? The ever-versatile wheat plant? A beautiful northern-hardy rose? You decide and be ready to tell us why. Click here to nominate.

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