August 15, 2015
In late summer, both cultivated gardens and native habitats command attention with colorful flowers and bold foliage of species native to the Midwest. Look for giant rose mallows (Hibiscus moscheutos) in pink, red and white; fuzzy lavender Joe pye weeds; sweet and purple coneflowers, black-eyed Susans, tall coreopsis and gaura. In the English Walled Garden, Sensory Garden and at the south end of the Garden look for several varieties of the winter-hardy Hibiscus syriacus, known as rose of Sharon. Big drifts of ornamental grasses on Evening Island are producing airy panicles, including switch grass, moor grass, feather reed grass and spike grass. In the Fruit and Vegetable Garden, in the entrance terraces are huge cabbage, kales and Swiss chard. Magic or surprise lilies and Japanese anemones are springing up in the Bulb Garden, English Walled Garden and Fruit and Vegetable Garden. Take your time and see what you can discover at the Chicago Botanic Garden.