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By: | Posted: 03/25/2013
by Livy Traczyk
Last week we asked for gardening advice from local insiders, Sakstrup Associates, so it's only fitting to mention the blooming Spring Flower Show, which opened Saturday at the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory. MSP Home spoke with the chief architect of the garden, horticulture supervisor Paul Knuth, about what's new this year at the Sunken Garden.
Those familiar with the annual show will notice a significant change in the color scheme this year. Knuth told MSP Home that they intentionally skipped yellows and pinks (though some of the lilies are turning out more orange than they had planned) and went for hues of red, purple, blue, and magenta.
In addition to a new color scheme, the 100-foot room is covered in winter-hardy flowers, most of which the Conservatory is growing for the first time. Knuth explained:
"You can plant most of them outside here in the Twin Cities or even further north. The Tulips, Crocuses, Alliums, many of the lilies like the Oriental Lilies, are all zoned for the winter."
Most of the flowers shown this year are available for purchase at major gardening centers Knuth said, though the ones on exhibit were imported from the place we all wished we were in the winter months—countries in South America and New Zealand.
If you're interested in replicating the look (and fragrance) of the Spring Flower Show in your own garden, Knuth recommended purchasing bulbs now, and cultivating them for interior use until the fall planting season.
However, reader be warned: To get the full Sunken Garden look, you'll need to invest nearly $15,000 dollars, 200 hours of labor, and have the stamina to rotate bulbs every seven to 12 days. If that sounds like more than you're up for then we suggest making your way to the free exhibit happening now through April 28.
Como Zoo and Conservatory, St. Paul, 10 a.m.—4 p.m., comozooconservatory.org
Jennifer Blaise Kramer is Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s home editor. See bio
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