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Monday, February 23, 2015

SUNY Farmingdale

What could be better on a cold winter night than to go through photos of lush gardens? It's a fridgid 14 degrees outside but this topic is doing it's best to warm me up.

One of my favorite places to visit on Long Island are the trial gardens at the State University at Farmingdale. There are 9 or 10 distinct different garden rooms/themes there to see, one more spectacular than the rest. It's a hidden jewel, few people know where to find it. As you drive past the parking lot there's not much more than these gates to see.

If you are lucky enough to to stop and park your car, all you need to do is take a peek through the bars and you'll find yourself transported to another world.

Andy and I visited the garden this past September, it had been a few years for me and I was thrilled to find a whole new addition with vegetables and a wild spill of cutting flowers.

Zinnias are so easy to grow and so beautiful. We grew one solitary Zinnia here last summer, I expect to grow lots and lots more this coming year!

When touring a garden of this magnitude, it's hard to find one single thing that just rocks your world. This time though it was an easy choice, those big Dr Seuss like tufts are Cyperus papyrus 'King Tut'. Although I took a dozen photos, not one does them justice, I am in love with them.

One of the first gardens you will walk through are very formal beds but the plant material is cutting edge tropicals surrounded by perennial borders.

Of course there is a silver garden, it's such a restful place after walking through a riot of color and textures.

My happy place is the tropical garden room. I think I could sit there all day. Give me a foggy day like this and I could take hundreds and hundreds of photos too. The plant with the long red blooms is Amaranthus 'Love lies a bleeding'. It's so cool!

The tropical garden is not large but every single inch is planted. September is the perfect time to visit this garden, just before the plants are brought in to the green houses for the winter.

The color and foliage combinations don't stop, there's something amazing no matter which way you turn. It's hard to grasp all that surrounds you.

The rustic arbor and goldfish pond have been there since my daughters were young. It's still just as magical as it was back then.

If you  make your way to the back corner of the gardens you'll find a shade garden filled with wonderful plants that just thrive in our Long Island conditions. I love the combination of this fern and the Asarum (ginger).

Although it wasn't rose season this part of the garden was still lovely. We'll have to make a point to go back this May when the roses and peonies are in full bloom.

There were plenty of autumn perennials to see such as this Aster. I'll take a guess and say it's 'Alma Potschke'.

One last photo, a riot of yellow blooms. If you live on Long Island or are coming this way for a visit, try to get in to see these gardens. You won't be sorry!