Plant Talk

Presently at NYBG: Blooming Cacti, Visiting Birds, and a Smoky Situation

Posted in What's On at NYBG on June 12, 2023, by Marlon Co

Marlon Co is the Photographer & Digital Content Manager of the New York Botanical Garden.

Presently at NYBG is a weekly showcase of our favorite images highlighting our appreciation and connection to plants and the natural world.

The last week saw a flurry of outdoor activity among the Garden’s collections. This time of year, visitors flock to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory courtyards, where the hardy water lilies are beginning to demand attention, punctuating the dark water with pops of color. But it’s not just in and around the Conservatory, our jewel in the Bronx, that you’ll find notable wonders.

Well beyond the walls of our glasshouse, where you can see many varieties of cacti growing from all over the world, a local relative began showing off its summer colors. In the Native Plant Garden, eastern prickly pear have begun to bloom. Did you know New York had native cacti? You’ll find these sunny yellow flowers sprouting from the cactus paddles along the rocky outcrop at the highest point in the collection. Elsewhere, migratory birds like Baltimore orioles continue to stop by NYBG on their way to their summer homes, giving peeks of their vibrant plumage as they hop through the trees. And turning up the heat in the Perennial Garden, purple-leaved smokebush (originally from Europe) glows in the summer light.

Speaking of smoke, it was hard to miss the impact of Canada’s forest fires last week—a sobering reminder that climate change is a global concern which will leave no region untouched. While the haze that passed over New York City and much of the east coast of the U.S. made clear our planet’s predicament, moments like these strengthen our resolve to see to it that we protect the natural world to ensure clearer skies in the future.

Check back next week to see what’s happening at NYBG.

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