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JC Raulston Arboretum e-Update

June 2004

In This Issue

Director's Note

Ruby C. McSwain Education CenterReady or not, one of the last remnants of the construction process has already begun, and there is more to come. The wood siding that is seen on the outside of the Ruby C. McSwain Education Center and the JCRA Bookstore and Gift Shop was not treated properly prior to original installation. This has led to the warping and separation of many cypress planks from the sides of these buildings.....and have you seen that gray staining, too? That was a mistake as well! Fortunately, the errors were detected and the situations will be rectified but not without some additional inconvenience and temporary unsightliness. All, yes all, of the cypress planks will be removed and replaced with appropriately treated cypress. It should weather well and stay secure for years to come following installation. Please "excuse our dust" during this period and know that we will see the end soon.....all in the interest of making our buildings safe, secure, accurate to plan and design, and functional! I don't have a commencement date yet. Best to simply watch for the appearance of the contractors! We'll make every effort to work their schedule around any reservations in McSwain Education Center and JCRA programming but I will ask for patience, too. – Bob Lyons, Director

Henry Isaacs/Gallery C Reception

Please join us again at Gallery C in Raleigh's Ridgewood Shopping Center on Wade Avenue for an artist's reception with painter Henry Isaacs on Friday, June 4, 2004 at 7:00 PM. This is the second year that Henry, Gallery C, and the JCRA have joined together to highlight Henry's work – many of them representing gardens and plants in the JCRA. Call either Adam Cave at Gallery C at (919) 828-3165 or Donna Walker at the JCRA at (919) 513-3826 for more information; there will be a $25.00 donation at the door for this benefit reception. – Donna Walker, Development Associate

Two Thumbs Up – A One Time Show Exclusively in the Southwest Garden

Southwest GardenTowering high over the Southwest Garden are two spectacular agave flower spikes – a real bonus for any visitor exploring the southwest corner of the Arboretum this month. The bright yellow, candelabra-like flower clusters of Agave havardiana (hardy blue agave) are putting on a real show right now, rising over 12' high, swarming with insects busy feasting on their rich nectar. This magnificent agave was collected by J. C. Raulston, Ph.D., from the mountains of northern Mexico in late December 1991, during the joint expedition with Yucca Do Nursery, L. A. County Arboretum, and the NCSU Arboretum. While you are there, also look for Agave lophantha (hardy century plant) and A. striata var. striata (needle agave) in bloom.

Agaves are very intriguing plants. Most agaves, like these, will flower once and then die (monocarpic). They have large, stout, fleshy gray leaves with a murderous spine on the tip of each. They need minimal maintenance in the landscape and are extremely drought tolerant. They make an excellent alternative to the overused century plant (Agave americana), especially when plenty of space is available. Watch for the many more accessions of Southwest plants, including agaves, waiting to be planted in the new garden areas at the JC Raulston Arboretum. – Nancy Doubrava, Interpretive Specialist

The Newest Named Garden Areas

Parking Circle Container GardenSponsoring a named garden is a permanent and very distinctive way that you, your family, your business, or your organization can recognize or honor a special loved one, friend, or colleague. I am pleased to announce two new named areas at the Arboretum.

The first area is a pocket garden that is sponsored by "The Bachelors" – Bill Burns, Tim Clancy, Dick Daugherty, and Hal Hopfenberg. This garden is in memory of their good friend Willie York.

Second, is the Parking Circle Container Gardens. This is the area that was "raffled" at the 2004 Gala in the Garden. The lucky winner was LeRoy B. Martin, and this area will be named in honor of LeRoy and his wife, Charlotte. Congratulations!

Please visit both these areas on you next visit to the Arboretum. Sandra Zazzara is the new volunteer curator for the Container Gardens, and they are sure to be spectacular!

If you are interested in sponsoring a garden area or would like to receive a Tribute Information Packet, please call or e-mail Anne Porter at (919) 513-3463 or <>. – Anne Porter, Director of Development

Coming Attractions – Highlights of June

Echinacea sanguinea (sanguine purple coneflower)The heat is on! The Perennial Border and the Finley-Nottingham Rose Garden are superb, and the colors in the Annual Trials and Demonstration Area are becoming brighter each day. Towering over the Southwest Garden is the spectacular, candelabra-like agave spike of the hardy blue agave (Agave havardiana).

May brought us several weeks of temperatures in the 80s and little rain, but flowering continues throughout the Arboretum. Look for butterfly bush, gardenia, coneflowers, roses, amaryllis, crepe myrtles, and hydrangea – to name just a few favorites. Later in the month don't miss the unusual deep purple flowers of the summer wisteria, Millettia taiwanensis, opening in the east Arboretum, Bed E11.

We hope you will visit the Arboretum often. If you live too far away, or simply find that you are stuck behind your computer too much these days, you can always visit the Now Showing section of the JCRA Web site for weekly pictures of what's in bloom.

This show is free. We invite you to visit often. – Nancy Doubrava, Interpretive Specialist

June Calendar

Gallery C Artist's Reception – June 4, 2004 (Friday) – 6:00 PM-9:00 PM – $25.00

Gallery C will be presenting an exhibition of works by nationally renowned artist Henry Isaacs. This showing will feature pastels and oils created plein air at the JCRA. The exhibition will open on June 4, 2004 with an artist's reception to benefit the Arboretum. Henry Isaacs will give a short gallery talk on the nature of landscape painting. For more information, directions to the gallery or to get an invitation, call Donna Walker at (919) 513-3826 or Gallery C at (919) 828-3165.

Plantsmen's Tour – June 24, 2004 (Thursday) – 5:30 PM – Free

"Shade Trees" – Ahhh, after a hard day's work, there's nothing better than enjoying the cool, refreshing shade underneath your favorite tree. Come and join Todd on a tour featuring some of the JCRA's brightest stars (both new and old) as potential shade trees for our gardens and urban landscapes and streetscapes. There's more to shade trees than red maple (Acer rubrum), after all!

Details for these events and all other JCRA events can be found in the "Calendar of Events" section on the JCRA Web site.

Gala in the Garden 2004

We're all still putting together the final closure for Gala in the Garden 2004, or, as Bob called it "Aqua Gala 2004". This was a wonderful event and we'll write more about it later, but I must take this time to thank everyone involved. The list goes on and on and I'm sure to miss many but just to name a few of the folks who made this a gala to remember: Honorary Chairs Jeanette and Wallace Hyde, Gala Committee Chairs Nancy and Tom Bland, all the gala committee chairs and the committee as a whole, the JCRA staff, and Tim Hinton and Steve Walker. A special mention and thanks to Libby and Bill Wilder who prepared the invitations. To those who offered us corporate sponsorship, auction items, and beverage donations – thank you. There was no job or donation, however small or large, that didn't make a tremendous difference to the event. Kudos to all the guests, volunteers, and staff who weathered the storm. Your devotion to the JCRA and the gala is amazing. No matter what your part in the gala, you have my heartfelt thanks and gratitude. Thank you is such an insignificant phrase to offer – but – thank you. – Donna Walker, Development Associate

JC Raulston Arboretum e-Updates are published electronically every month for everyone interested in the Arboretum. Did you find this edition informative? What information would you like to see in future editions? Send Christopher Todd Glenn your suggestions. To remove yourself from this mailing, please write Christopher Todd Glenn.

© The JC Raulston Arboretum, June 2004

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