Archive for October 2012

Whew! Hurricane Sandy

Whew! Swarthmore College and the Scott Arboretum reopened today to minor damage from Hurricane Sandy. After two days of emergency closure and 4.5 inches of rain, we only lost one major tree. Most of campus was only littered with small branches and leaf debris.


Our only major casualty to Hurricane Sandy, a sugar maple near Ashton House. photo credit: R. Robert

The one large tree we did lose was a large sugar maple outside of Ashton House, the college guest house. At this time, it appears to not have caused damage to the college house itself. See a collection …

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Plants of the Week – October 22

I suspect the thrill of plant collecting, and returning with open-pollinated seed, is discovering the surprising variability of the seedlings that germinate. Such is the case with xMangave ‘Macho Mocha’. Our plant, currently growing with other succulents in a shallow planter in the Cosby Courtyard came from Plant Delights Nursery. The mail order company provides the following explanation: “On a plant exploration trip into Mexico, Carl Schoenfeld collected seed from a plant of Manfreda variegata. Only when the seedlings were grown was it realized that it had crossed in the wild with a nearby plant of Agave celsii

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Green Roof Destruction

Last month while inspecting the green roof, Gardener Lars Rasmussen noticed extensive damage to the plantings on the roof. It appeared as if someone had come along, pulled up the sedum, and began digging in the soil.

Upon closer inspection, a population of Phyllophaga spp. was discovered below the soil. photo credit: W. Costello

On a subsequent visit, gardeners startled crows digging in soil and pulling up the sedum. Upon closer inspection, it was realized they were feasting on a population of newly hatched grubs in the soil of the green roof. These c-shaped white grubss were Phyllophaga spp., …

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