"Yellowhorn Tree" in bloom located in the Sensory Garden
It's been a colorful spring in the arboretum with some seasonal surprises, award winning performances and reliable old standards. Lilacs are in bloom as of June 1 and the Japanese Lilacs and Peking Lilacs will be bursting out this month. The reliable Yellowhorn, the featured tree, is always in full color the beginning of June. Some other surprises are shown to the left including the "Donald Wyman" Crabapple located at the Millenium Grove entrance and Prunus Triloba located at the Tiger exhibit. And finally one of the old standards, the Mountain Ash, located in the Sensory Garden, Waterways and the Eagle Bridge. Come on out and enjoy the offerings !
Two new additions have been donated to the arboretum courtesy of Switzer Landscaping and Nursery, 4326 Neibauer Road, Billings,MT 59106 (406) 656-4288
Donated were a Peking Lilac,located in the Asian Garden, and an Oak Leaf Mountain Ash, located at Eagle Bridge.
" Renovation in Progress "
Work has begun on a refresh of the Wolverine Garden. Zoo staff has upgraded the bark and activated the water system so now it's time to plant some new color and texture. Billings Hardware has their name on the original landscaping and they have graciously donated new specimens that will give this area some new life and compliment the existing Spruce, Ninebark, Lilacs and Day Lillies. The donations are below and include the following:
Flowering Cistena Plum, Russian Sage, Austrian Bramble, Persian Rose and Rose Glow Barberries.
" Arboretum Participation-Follow-up"
A new "Duchess" specimen from the Chief Plenty Coup orchard has been planted near the small Koi Pond. Look for some added color this summer around this little tree which is growing !
Chief Plenty Coup Duchess
Locally this program is available from Good Earth Works
Duchess of Oldenburg is another centuries old Russian cultivar brought to the United States by the Massachusett's Horticultural Society in 1835. Though short-lived, this rugged and cold hardy tree produces early. Fruit is medium to large with irregular scarlet stripes on a yellow backdrop. Flesh yellow, fine, sprightly subacid and balanced allowing for versatility both as a fresh eating apple or used in the kitchen.
" A Celebration of an Irish Tradition "
The Hawthorn-Ireland's Fairy Tree
Native to Ireland, the Hawthorn tree has a rich tradition and place in Irish folklore and is commonly known as the home or gateway to the fairy world. Long used as a hedging plant, the Hawthorn served as an ideal barrier for farmers thanks to it's gnarled, thorny branches. Each spring, the tree unfurls blooms full of small white or colored flowers that fill the air with a trademark scent, harkening the start of summer. As summer progresses, the trees bear fleshy fruits known as haws that are popular among birds and have long been made into jams, jellies, wines and liquors. Because of the tree's place in Irish fairy legend, it is local custom to not disturb the hawthorn. Often farmers would roll boulders up against the tree trunk to protect it, leaving the hawthorn trees standing solitary in fields or pastures. Even as recently as 1999 when a major roadway was being constructedf from Limerick to Galway, construction was halted and ultimately rerouted so as not to disturb a legendary Hawthorn tree !
The arboretum has a nice collection of Hawthorns found surrounding the Homestead House (hmmm), the Schoolhouse Entry, the Old Pond, the south hill of the Sensory Garden and the native Black Hawthorn located at the Golden Eagle exhibit.
"Tree of the Month"
Abies fraseri, commonly called Fraser fir, is native to a very small area of the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina and Tennessee extending into the southwestern corners of Virginia and West Viginia. It is typically found at elevations ranging from 4500’ to 6900’. It is the only fir that is indigenous to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Although rare in nature, Fraser fir is one of the most popular Christmas trees sold in commerce today, and is commonly grown in tree farms for that purpose. This is a narrow, pyramidal, evergreen conifer with a spire-like crown. It grows to 30-50’ tall over time with a spread of 10-25’. It is very similar to balsam fir (Abies balsamea), the primary difference being in the bracts of the cone scales. Flattened, shiny, dark green needles (to 1” long) are white-banded beneath. Needles are densely borne on resinous stems. Resin blisters may appear on the bark, giving rise to a regional common name of she-balsam for this tree. Seed cones are purple with conspicuously protruding bracts. As is distinctive with the firs, the cones appear upright on the branches.
The arboretum feels lucky to nurture this rare-to-Montana tree. Located in the Bear Meadows Conifer Garden the recently planted tree has a wonderful Christmas time aroma. This is "Joey's Tree" so be sure to visit it's secluded location as it's being protected by the nearby Limber Pine, Blue Spruce and Austrian Pines !
Thanks to Good Earth Works for securing this tree.
"SPRING FEATURED TREE"
GROWING LILACS IN MONTANA ? Click here
READ MORE ABOUT DWARF LILACS ON OUR FEATURE PAGE ! Click here
OUR MISSION STATEMENT
"The mission of the Yellowstone Arboretum is to cultivate arboreta appreciation and understanding of our local heritage through public education, organic preservation and stewardship of our natural environment."
SCHEDULE of EVENTS
ZOOMONTANA BOTANICAL PARK
Thursday June 4 , 9:30 a.m.
ZooMontana is open for the public with summer hours and admission in force.
ARBORETUM & GARDENS OPEN
The arboretum and botanical gardens are also open to the public with usual ZooMontana admission. The gardens and arboretum are actively accepting volunteers for the 2020 season. Apply at the Zoo or online. Ask Lea Ann for all the details
Donations and memorial trees are currently being accepted and planted during the summer. The 2020 program is in place. Signage will be forthcoming.
The greenhouse is now closed as all flowers and pots have been distributed. Many thanks to Nancy W. for all her hard work in making this venture a success. Almost 20 pots have been distributed along the pathways this year making a huge statement of color and texture.
The much advertised "Dell" has been planted with some new specimens including Wisteria Trees, Deutzia,Daphne and more Magnolia!
"The Dell" in afternoon shade.
Taylor's Garden has been built in the Asian Garden with new Asian plants arriving throughout the summer. Oriental Lillies, Lilacs, Deutzia, Japanese Rose and decorative Kale have been planted so far this season !
We have created some features on the website that may be worth investigating.
The new "Smart Tour"is on the arboretum website. This unique tour can be followed by visitors to the arboretum on their smart phone. The tour guides the visitor through different areas of the grounds highlighting selected trees and offering a "Did You Know" segment with some cool information for each area!
Did You Know ?
Have you checked out the Yellowstone Arboretum Facebook page ?
Our page shares tree articles and videos of interest to arboreta enthusiasts as well as updated info from the arboretum.
CLICK HERE to find out more
You can follow the progress of the monthly climatic reports by clicking on the information below:
Readings for April and May were suspended due to Clovid-19 restrictions. They will resume in June