Monday, October 10, 2016

Autumn Splendor at Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum

October brings cooler temps and a ramping up of fall colors in southern Michigan.

Over the next week or two, fall colors at the University of Michigan Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum will unfold in all their majesty. Here are some sights----big-picture and small-scale---that Matthaei-Nichols staff and volunteer photographers captured at the Gardens and Arboretum. Click on any picture to see an expanded gallery of images.

Visit the Botanical Gardens: 1800 N. Dixboro Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48105; and Nichols Arboretum: 1610 Washington Hts., Ann Arbor. 734-647-7600. mbgna.umich.edu.

Volunteer photographer Zohair Mohsen took this shot at Matthaei Botanical
Gardens of a tiger moth caterpillar (Arctia caja) bristling with hairs.
(Photo taken 10-5-16.)

Volunteer photographer Zohair Mohsen captured the hidden beauty of
cow parsnip (
Heracleum maximum) seeds. (Photo taken 10-5-16.)

Poison ivy is a problem plant for a lot of reasons
but its fall leaves offer a bounty of subtle hues.
(Photo taken by volunteer photographer 
Zohair Mohsen: 10-5-16.)

Volunteer photographer Zohair Mohsen caught these elm leaves in
their startling transition between summer and fall. (Photo taken at
Matthaei: 10-5-16.)

The Alex Dow Field in Nichols Arboretum shows off its prairie grasses.
(Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

The Alex Dow Field in Nichols Arboretum shows off its prairie grasses.
(Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

The river front along the Huron River in Nichols Arboretum is a favorite spot for
contemplation and observation. An old box elder provides a
sitting spot for visitors. (Photo by Michele Yanga-10-7-16.)

Looking west up the Huron River along the river front at
Nichols Arboretum. (Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

Always time for a selfie at the river front in Nichols Arboretum. (Photo by Lars
Miller: 10-9-16.)

The uncharacteristically quiet valley in Nichols Arboretum. (Photo by Lars
Miller: 10-9-16.)

Numerous benches in Nichols Arboretum offer a welcome place to
rest and contemplate. (Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

The footpath along the prairie in Nichols
Arboretum is a favorite place to walk.
(Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

Why not study next to the Huron River on a
perfect fall day in the Arb?
(Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

Sumac turns a stunning red each fall. These are along the path that
circles Dow Field in Nichols Arboretum. (Photo by Lars Miller: 10-9-16.)

Hop hornbeam show its vivid yellow leaves and hop-like
seed pods. (Photo by Michele Yanga-10-7-16.)

The Gateway Garden at Matthaei blooms with vivid colors
right up to the first frost. (Photo taken 10/4/16)

Another view of the Gateway Garden at Matthaei. This garden
is a favorite of birds, butterflies, and brides, and it
blooms with vivid colors 
right up to
the first frost. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

A viburnum at Matthaei begins to turn a beautiful shade of
purplish-red. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

A cloud of white aster drifts across the landscape at Matthaei.
(Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Purple aster frames a bench at Matthaei.
(Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Sumac guarantees a show of red leaves each fall. (Photo taken Matthaei 10/4/16.)

White anemone stands above the landscape each fall in the perennial
garden at Matthaei. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Green for now, these gingko trees will turn a
dazzling gold almost all
at once as cold
weather nears. 
(Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Trees, reeds, grasses, woody shrubs, and water make a perfect fall palette
near Willow Pond at Matthaei. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)
Dogwood surprises with its purple hues at Matthaei. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Orange leaves against a blue sky at Matthaei. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

A Matthaei vista with maple trees. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

A Matthaei vista with maple trees. (Photo taken 10/4/16.)

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Birds, Bees, and Bonsai: October Programs at Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum Highlight a Diversity of Topics

Each month throughout the year Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum offers a diverse selection of programs brought to you by our community and non-profit partners. Groups like Washtenaw Audubon Society, Sierra Club Huron Valley, Michigan Alzheimer's Disease Center, and Ann Arbor Backyard Beekeepers bring fascinating---and for the most part free---educational programs on topics relevant to what's happening in the world of plants, animals, horticulture, and more.

Read on for some of our October 2016 offerings. All programs held at Matthaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N. Dixboro Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48105, unless noted otherwise:

Tues., Oct. 11, 7 pm
New Impetus from Old Germany: My Strange and Terrible Journey to the Heart of German Beekeeping
Andrew Mills, a lecturer in German at the University of Michigan and a member of UMBees in ANn Arbor, recounts his summer 2016 trip through Germany, meeting beekeepers along the way and discovering what it means to keep bees in Germany. 

Wed., Oct 12, 6-7:30 pm 
Catching Your Breath
A free monthly program for caregivers of adults with memory loss. Designed for learning skills for continued health and well-being. Program is free but please register directly with the Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center: 734.936.8803. Presented by Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center. Free.

Thurs., Oct. 13, 1-2:30 pm

Photo of ichiyo school arrangement
courtesy Ikebana International.
Ikebana: Japanese Flower Arranging
Create your own seasonal Ikebana arrangement with guidance by a certified instructor. Workshops are the second Thursday of each month from 1:00 - 2:30 in room 125. Cost is $20.00 which covers flowers and instructor. Reservations required. Info:  a2ikebana@gmail.com. Presented by Ann Arbor Ikebana International Chapter.

Sat., October 15, 11 am
Vanda coerulea Orchids
Learn about the Vanda coerulea orchid, also called the blue orchid, and about how orchids are judged for the American Orchid Society at the Great Lakes Judging Center’s monthly program. Today’s session presented by Alex Challis, Great Lakes Judging Center accredited judge. Presented by Great Lakes Judging Center (Orchids). Free.

Mon., Oct. 17, 7:30 pm
Photo: One of the most famous dunes in the
world: Michigan's Sleeping Bear dune.
Dune Ecology and Restoration
Shaun Howard, Nature Conservancy Project Manager for Eastern Lake Michigan, discusses this well-known Great Lakes habitats and the Nature Conservancy’s efforts to restore them. Presented by Michigan Botanical Club. Free.

Tues., Oct. 18, 7:30 pm
Improving Trail Connectivity in Ann Arbor
Despite the many recent improvements in Ann Arbor’s non-motorized system, there are still some major discontinuities in the trail system. Larry Deck, a board member of the Washtenaw Bicycling and Walking Coalition, will present the organization’s proposal for how to close the gaps in the Border-to-Border (B2B) Trail and build the Campus-to-Campus (C2C) Bikeway. Matthaei-Nichols associate director Karen Sikkenga will also talk about the planned Dixboro Rd. trail. Free. Presented by Sierra Club Huron Valley. Free.

Photo: Resplendent quetzal, the
national bird of Guatemala. Photo
by Francesco Veronesi via Flickr.
Wed., Oct. 19, 7:30 pm
Birding in Guatemala
Join Bryn Martin for a program on Washtenaw Audubon’s most recent overseas field trip, to the Central American country of Guatemala, where there are a number of birds found nowhere else in the world. Bryn Martin is an avid world birder, a high school teacher, and Washtenaw Audubon’s field trip coordinator. Presented by Washtenaw Audubon Society. Free.

Sat., Oct. 22, 1:30-3 pm
Alpines with Peter Korn
Presenter: Great Lakes Chapter North American Rock Garden Society

Photo: Swedish rock gardener Peter Korn.
Renowned Swedish rock gardener Peter Korn discusses the natural history of alpines as it relates to their cultivation  in non-alpine environments. The gardening conditions in Sweden are more similar to Michigan than many parts of Western Europe, and his rock gardening experiences and techniques should be adaptable to gardening to our Michigan and Great Lakes region climates and soils. Besides that, Peter is an immensely energetic young gardener whose undertakes vast gardening enterprises that will inspire us all. Presented by the Great Lakes Chapter of the North American Rock Garden Society. Free. For more information: reznicek@umich.edu.

Wed., Oct. 26, 7 pm
Best Practices for Bonsai Fertilizing
Aaron Wiley, a local horticulturist with a penchant for bonsai, discusses the reasons, goals, timing, objectives, and kinds of fertilizing for bonsai. Presented by Ann Arbor Bonsai Society.

Photo: Satsuki azalea on display
at Matthaei Botanical Gardens,
June 2016. Photo by Michele Yanga.