Seattle Never Stops Blooming

One of the reasons I moved to Seattle was for access to greenery in an urban environment. Living here, I am continually impressed by all the unique plants I see. This afternoon I went on a walking tour of the Witt Winter Garden at the Washington Park Arboretum. The winter garden is a curation of winter-flowering plants, including many species of witch hazel and daphne.

Chinese witch hazel

Chinese witch hazel

Walking through the garden was like visiting nature’s wintertime perfume counter. Winter-flowering plants have fewer fertilizers like birds and squirrels hopping about, so many of them have powerful fragrances to attract curious olfactophiles that will help spread their seeds. Luckily, all of the smells I encountered today were pleasant and floral. There were no carrion flowers in this winter garden!

Our tour was made extra-special because everyone was given a small magnifying glass with which to study flowers and leaves. Many winter blooms are extra small and the magnifying glass allowed us to see minute buds and tiny hairs on leaves. Check some out for yourself!


edible berries

edible berries (not that I tried any)

I think the anther look like rice

I think the anther look like rice

these leaves seem a little... clitoral

these leaves seem a little… clitoral

far away

far away

up close

up close

tiny dried leaves

a burst berry

a bud

I heard about this tour from Meetup, but the Arboretum actually gives free tours every Sunday at 1 p.m. February is the winter garden month; January focused on ancient trees and March will celebrate “our favorite plants.” Ben and I definitely plan to return some Sunday in March, and I would honestly enjoy repeating my experience today with another winter garden tour. It’s hard for me to tire of walking around and studying beautiful plants! See you soon, Arboretum!

our tour group

our tour group


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About Emily Suggests

Pineapple rock, lemon platt, butter scotch. A sugarsticky girl shovelling scoopfuls of creams for a christian brother.

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