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RE: botanical gardens/cypress gardens

you got that right, theresa. schitzo. a reasonably well kept botanic garden with a boat tour through a series of canals that are both landscaped and florida native--and then the water ski shows and southern belle costume rentals. but they had some nice plant shows and their website had a calendar that listed what was in bloom by month, so if there was something you particularly wanted to see [last time we went it was to see the begonias], you knew when to go.

i did go to the florida botanical garden today, and it was a disappointment. it is the property of the pinellas county [think st. pete] extension service and it is maintained by the master gardeners. the nice part about that is everything was neatly labeled--even down to three or four different cultivars of asiatic jasmine. the sad part is the volunteer effort doesn't make up for lack of interesting specimen material. i saw only three plants that one could possibly covet--a very nice silver palmetto, a 20-foot ribbon palm, and a two-stem pony tail palm [short but with an enormous base].

they were, incidentally, having an ikebana [spell?] show, which looked very elegant to me, but what do i know.

At 08:43 PM 4/12/03 -0700, you wrote:
Wow- had no idea that Cypress gardens was closing.  Went there when I was in
high school, now 20 years ago (e gads that scary!)  Thought it was a very
usual place with a mojor identity crisis.  Had lovely gardens and trees, but
also a water skiing show and  people wandering around in southern belle
outfits (and it was about a million degrees that day).  I probably still
have a Cypress Garden's daquiri glass around somewhere!  Geez, I hope they
don't just plaw everything over and build a mall or subdivision there!

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net]On
Behalf Of Island Jim
Sent: Saturday, April 12, 2003 1:43 PM
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Subject: [CHAT] botanical gardens

i just got back from a bromeliad society show and sale at marie selby
botanical garden. i'm not much of a bromeliad fan, so mostly i just
wandered around at looked at the damage that our cold weather had caused
this winter. most stuff looked okay except for some of the frost tender
palms that are not planted in protected locations. i was surprised to see
that the lignum vitae, which is definitely not hardy as far north as
sarasota, looked unmolested and was blooming like mad.

also, the shaving brush tree [pseudobombax something or other] was in full
bloom. this relative of the bombax blooms like the bombax--masses of red
flower on the end of every bare branch and twig. but unlike the bombax,
these flowers, as the common name implies, are fuzzy pink "brushes."

maybe i'll go up to the florida botanical garden tomorrow to see what's
going on there. it's just north of st. pete, a couple of hours from here.

and one last thing about big public gardens. i guess all of you have heard
by now that cypress gardens, florida's oldest theme park built on a
botanical garden motif, is closing. tomorrow will be its last day. when the
short one heard that, she said: "i wonder what they're going to do with all
those big begonias?"

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