Visiting Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA is always a pleasure and one I try to do several times a year. Fortunately for me, it is close by. I made it a day trip which included a visit to Terrain, a destination nursery/garden center. For more posts on Longwood, go to- Visiting Longwood During Covid, Christmas at Longwood, and Blooms & Bamboo at Longwood.
After visitingTerrain, I made it to Longwood Gardens while it was still daylight and was blown away by the outdoor gardens which featured spectacular grasses and lots of fall color still at peak bloom.
The first thing you see entering the main conservatory is the massive Chrysanthemum plant that was started in the Longwood’s greenhouse 17 months ago.
Beginning more than a year in advance, thousands of chrysanthemums are nurtured and trained meticulously into giant spheres, spirals, columns of cascading flowers, and pagodas. To appreciate the many different types of mums, go to Chrysanthemums: A Class of Their Own.
My favorite exhibit by far is the Bonsai one. Lots of mums (around 90) have been started in the previous January from cuttings to direct the growth to resemble a full grown tree. Utilizing the natural shape of a tree, Longwood horticulturalists train them into traditional bonsai forms and also are encouraged to experiment with their own artistic interpretations. The cultivars used for these are called ‘gnome’ cultivars which are bred for tiny (less than 1″) leaf and bloom size. Go to Tiny Flowers: Big Hit to read more about them.
My favorite exhibit is the Chrysanthemum Bonsai
For more information about hours and visiting, go to Longwood Gardens.