For stressed out New Yorkers or visitors who want to experience a bucolic version of city life, head on out to the New York Botanical Garden.
Chartered in 1891, the NYBG encompasses a sprawling 250 acres in the Bronx and is the largest botanical garden in any American city.
The mission of the Garden is threefold: "to conduct basic and applied research on the plants of the world with the goal of protecting and preserving them where they live in the wild; to maintain and improve the gardens and collections at the highest horticultural standard; and to use the Garden itself as a venue for teaching the public about plant biology, horticulture, and the natural world generally."
|The Rock Garden|
|The Marjorie G. Rosen Seasonal Walk|
|The Rose Garden|
...and indoor exhibits.
|The Enid A. Haupt Conservatory|
|The Mertz Library|
The O'Keeffe exhibit offers a rare look at the 17 paintings this modernest painter created during a 9 week trip to Hawaii in 1939, sponsored by the Hawaiian Pineapple Co. later to become Dole.
This is the first time all of these paintings have been presented together since their debut in 1940.
There's a very engaging short film about O'Keeffe's personal thoughts regarding the trip and the gorgeous plant life she discovered and which influenced her work for the rest of her life.
Throughout the garden there are creative contributions to the Hawaiian theme such as Mark Chai's lanterns. The Garden also offers Aloha Nights which include live music and lei-making demonstrations.
There's a Summer Concert Series at the garden celebrating jazz this season - June 22, July 13 and 27, as well as ongoing classes for young and old alike.
|Photo courtesy of the NYBG|
Still, one of my favorite things to do at the Botanical Garden is to just stroll by the vast fields.
Growing up in Northern Massachusetts, the terrain and plant life here happily reminds me of New Hampshire.