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Got Spring Fever? Get Out and Explore... - Jan 26, 2011

by Kelle Hartman, Green Bay Botanical Garden Educator

The winter months tend to be a dismal time for gardeners. We mourn the loss of leaves and the development of seed heads that signal the end of the growing season. And while the arrival of seed catalogs brings excitement and anticipation for the coming season, we soon fall back into our dreary moods as we wait for spring to arrive. Don’t let yourself become trapped by the winter doldrums! Instead, learn to celebrate winter as its own season in the garden and work to create your own winter wonderland that’s visible through the windows.  Consider a winter visit to Green Bay Botanical Garden to discover how beauty can still be found in the snow-covered Garden, and take home a few ideas:

Evergreens – Evergreens can add more than just a splash of green to your winter garden. They also provide shelter for birds and give structure once other trees have lost their leaves. And with so many dwarf varieties, there is bound to be an evergreen to suit even the small garden.

Fruit bearing Trees – Add color and food for the birds with the addition of a berry tree. Service berries, winterberry, crabapples and viburnum varieties have colorful fruit that stays almost all winter (or at least until the birds eat it).

Unique Bark – Trees such as birch, red or yellow twig dogwood, and snakebark maple all look beautiful in your garden long after they lose their leaves thanks to their colorful and textured bark.

Grasses and Seed Heads  –  Resist the temptation to cut back all the foliage during your fall clean up. The seed heads of ornamental grasses stand out wonderfully against a backdrop of white. Rudbeckia, Echinacea and Hydrangea species also provide interesting shapes and colors when the seed heads are left standing until spring.

So don’t stay cooped up all winter; take this time to visit Green Bay Botanical Garden for ideas on how you can transform your garden into a winter retreat. As an added incentive to visit, join our Winter Walking Club – simply register at the admissions desk and walk whenever it fits your schedule during our regular open hours. Each time you walk more than 20 minutes through the Garden you’ll earn one point that can be accumulated for discounts at the Garden. Accumulate up to 10 points to receive a coupon of your choice:

          
    • 10% off in the Trellis Gift Shop (non-members only) OR an additional 5% off in the Trellis Gift Shop (current members) **Due to construction, the Trellis Gift Shop will be closed from January-April 2011. A new & expanded gift shop will reopen in spring!
          
    • $10 off a membership or membership renewal
          
    • $10 off an education class


For more information on our Winter Walking Club, visit our website at www.gbbg.org. And remember – enjoy the winter!

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