The Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden Florilegium Exhibition opens with a reception from 6:30 to 8 p.m. August 14, 2014, in the Doty Board Room of the Minneapolis Central Library, 300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
What’s a florilegium, a Road Trips Gardener may ask. This one, a project to provide a visual historical record of the garden’s flora, is a partnership between the wildflower garden and the Minnesota School of Botanical Art, begun in 2010. This exhibition will include 48 paintings of the plants that grow there by students and instructors of The Minnesota School of Botanical Art.
All paintings accepted into the florilegium — on display in the library’s Cargill Hall through October 15, 2014 — will be donated to the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board for display purposes and for use in providing educational programs and services to the community.
A lecture on the history of the garden and botanical art is set for 1 p.m. September 6, 2014, in the library, presented by Susan Wilkins, curator of the garden, and Marilyn Garber, founder of botanical art school.
The 15-acre garden is the oldest public wildflower garden in the nation. Its legacy dates back to 1907 when Minneapolis botanist Eloise Butler and botany teachers successfully petitioned the Mineeapolis Park & Recreation Board to create a natural botanic garden to preserve native flora as the city grew. Three acres of bog, meadow and hillside were fenced off and the Wild Botanic Garden opened April 27, 1907.
The Garden, located at Theodore Wirth Parkway and Glenwood Avenue, Minneapolis, Minnesota, is home to over 500 plant species and 130 bird species. It provides 60,000 visitors annually with seasonal displays of native wildflowers in woodland, wetland and prairie areas. Each area creates a different habitat that fosters different types of plants, animals and birds. It’s open from 7:30 a.m. until one hour before sunset from mid-April through October 15 each year.
(Image by Kathy Creger of New England Aster courtesy of American Society of Botanical Artists)