Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Coral Gables, FL is now hosting a sculpture show through Monday 4/30/18. It is truly spectacular to see these life- sized figures balancing overhead in the palms! In case I did not entice you with my first blog about this art show, here is another photo! The artist is Jerzy Kedziora.
People have asked me to recommend a good palm book for beginners. This is a dandy small book with clear photos and descriptions of about 36 palms that you will see in Florida landscapes: A Handbook of Landscape Palms by Jan Allyn. As you can see, I borrowed this copy from the Palm Beach County Library System, but it is available new on Amazon for under $6.00. Particularly handy because it is small enough to carry with you as you walk around the neighborhood or a nature center. Great gift for anyone interested in the plants around them!
Hope everyone enjoyed the a.m. and p.m. palm walks of our lovely Valencia Reserve (VR) in Boynton Beach,FL today. Here is a link to click on to get to a great website for identifying commonly cultivated palms of the USA and the Caribbean, including all of the palms we saw today:
Your comments about the tour are appreciated. It's easy, just hit that tiny word comment near the date above and type!
And, if you enjoyed our time together, please recommend me as a tour guide to others who may enjoy plants! Maybe you have friends in garden groups or women's / men's groups in other Florida 55 + communities?
(I will ask them for only for a minimal honorarium!)
Besides palms, I can offer many other tours including: flowering trees and shrubs, flowering perennials and annuals, agaves/bromeliads/cactus, and native versus non-native trees.
Hope to see you on future tours!
COCONUT PALMS GIVE US MACAROONS!
Chocolate -Topped Coconut Macaroons (for Passover or anytime!)Makes 24
(Note for those who keep kosher: the cookie is parve, the chocolate top is dairy)
3 cups sweetened shredded coconut ( lightly packed)
3/4 cup granulated white sugar
3/4 cup egg whites ( about 6 egg whites)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract ( not imitation vanilla flavoring)
1 teaspoon almond extract ( not imitation almond flavoring)
1 and 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 tablespoons heavy whipping cream.
Mix the first three ingredients in a heavy saucepan and cook over medium heat stirring constantly for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in both extracts. Refrigerate until cold, about 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 300. Grease baking sheet with butter or parve butter-substitute or line it with parchment paper. Place 1 tablespoon- sized balls of dough on sheet. Make sure they are "tightly held together" balls because any fragments of coconut that hang off will get darker than the rest of the cookie. Makes 2 sheets. Bake about 20 minutes until golden on the bottom and slightly golden on the top. Transfer cookies to rack to cool.
Stir chocolate and cream in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat until melted and smooth. Remove from heat. Spoon chocolate
over the tops of the macaroons (you can leave a few plain, for people who might not want chocolate). Refrigerate for at least two hours so the glaze sets. They will be good for at least a week, refrigerated in an air-tight container.
"Plant Families: A Guide for Gardeners and Botanists" by Ross Bayton and Simon Maughan (University of Chicago Press, $25): This practical and fact-filled book begins with a plant family tree that provides a visual overview of the basic order of plant evolution and the relationships between them.
A brief evolutionary history offers the reader a clear understanding of how plants came to have the level of diversity we see today.
Plant identification and anatomy are described in great depths.
The richest part of the 224-page book, for me as a gardener, is each chapter is focused on a plant family and contains useful information about the size, range, origins and anatomical features. The illustrations of plants and their anatomical parts are excellent. "Uses For" boxes offer helpful tips for everyday gardening use.
"Plant Families" ends with a glossary of botanical terms that is complete and well organized.
The authors have written an amazing guide filled with botanical information and exacting illustrations and diagrams. This book can help the gardener, botanist or horticulturist "make sense of -- and better appreciate-- the enormous biological diversity of the plant kingdom."
Written by Sally Peterson
lWashed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea is the special exhibit at Mounts Botanical Garden in West Palm Beach, Florida, December 2, 2107- June 3, 2018. Ten sea life sculptures composed entirely of marine debris are scattered throughout this 14 acre garden (which is lovely on its own!) Would be an enjoyable outing for both children and adults. Entry is free for Mounts members; check hours and prices on their website.
Don't miss the orchid show and sale this weekend 2/10/18 and 2/11/18 (always around Valentine's Day!) It is an annual event, justifiably popular because of the beautiful orchid displays,wonderful orchids plants for sale, and educational lectures. The address is Safe Schools Institute 1790 NW Spanish River Blvd, Boca Raton Florida. 10 am- 5pm. $5.00 admission fee, cash only.
Highly recommend this art show! Jerzy Kedziora's balanced sculptures have found their perfect setting among the palms of Fairfield Tropical Garden. For more info (and more photos) go to http://www.fairchildgarden.org/artofbalance
Katherine Wagner-Reiss has her botany Certificate from the New York Botanical Garden, where she is a volunteer tour guide.