Posts tagged tours

Inspiration from living landscape history

Clematis at Brucemore in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Brucemore photo)

Clematis at Brucemore in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Brucemore photo)

The following is from Deb Engmark, head gardener at the historic Brucemore estate in Cedar Rapids, Iowa:

     I am in a constant state of wonder and awe at Brucemore; every direction I turn stimulates the senses. The birds’ twittering in the wisteria vine mingles with a slight scent of early blooming clematis growing along the grape arbor.  New growth is making its appearance throughout the gardens, as vividly illustrated by the lime-colored sprouts starkly contrasting against the dark green of existing foliage on the old Norway spruce.  Here on the Brucemore grounds, the new and old, past and present are demanding attention, clamoring to be experienced and shared.

     In an effort to appease my senses but also to share Brucemore’s role in American landscape history, I am leading a historic landscape tour. Wear walking shoes and bring a water bottle, this tour will cover a lot of ground and encourage discovery of this quiet, park-like space in the middle of Cedar Rapids.  Brucemore’s 100 years of Prairie landscape history, paired with the burgeoning spring plants, will make for an inspiring hike. Woven into the trek through the 26 acres of grounds will also be discussion of plants (mostly natives), theories of the original design, Brucemore family stories, and issues pertaining to current preservation and property use.

 Brucemore’s Historic Landscape Tour

Tuesday, May 26 & Thursday, May 28 at 6:00 p.m.  and Saturday, May 30 at 10:30 a.m. at Brucemore, 2160 Linden Drive SE.

Admission is $10 per person and $7 per Brucemore member. Please call (319) 362-7375 to register. See: www.brucemore.org

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Tropical oasis

   If you need an escape this winter, you don’t have to travel far. The Noelridge greenhouse offers a tropical oasis in the middle of Cedar Rapids. I usually go to the Mother’s Day and Easter weekend open houses, but would love to visit in the midst of a cold Iowa winter.  Stepping inside the greenhouse is like walking into summer.

   New this year, the Cedar Rapids Parks and Recreation Department has scheduled a class at the greenhouse on Monday, Dec. 8. You can use pressed flowers to create greeting cards, as well as a bookmark, at the session, which runs 6-8 p.m. Cost is $10 for residents or $12 for non-residents. Registration information is available at www.crrec.org

 

   Greenhouse tours also are available for groups or classes Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call (319) 286-5762 in advance to schedule a tour. Cost is $2 per person, with an adult chaperone free.

 

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