The Morton Arboretum’s fields, groves, and glades are overflowing with color. Even while the grounds remain closed until the end of May, the trees and fields continue their transformations unabated as everything comes into vivid bloom. Explore near your home to find inspiring colors and fragrant branches; safely enjoy some time outside in your own neighborhood. The Arboretum is excited to announce a gradual reopening in June. We look forward to welcoming you back.
To learn about the plans to reopen in June, please visit the Know Before You Go page. Stay connected with the Arboretum on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share pictures of the blooms you see using the hashtags #springblooms and #MortonArboretum.
About this week's featured blooms
- Copper beech (Fagus sylvatica 'Atropunicea') with Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica) and celandine poppy (Stylophorum diphyllum) The word “book” comes from the Old English word for “beech,” possibly because runes and letters often were carved on the tree’s smooth bark. It’s rare to see a beech with sleek, unmarked bark like this one. The Arboretum seeks to protect trees, on its grounds and elsewhere.
- Snowdrop anemone (Anemone sylvestris) This spring-blooming anemone from Europe tolerates shade in the garden. The species name comes from the Greek word for wind, and anemones are often called windflowers.
- Redbud (Cercis canadensis) The redbud can have flower buds not just at the tips of twigs but all along its branches, forming a vivid contrast to the dark bark. The effect is to create a delicate sketch of pink when the tree blooms in May. Redbuds are native to the Chicago region and areas to the southeast.
- Woodland phlox (Phlox divaricata) Also called wild sweet William, this winsome wildflower grows all over the eastern United States from Texas to Quebec. Like many plants that bloom in the woods in spring, it will die back after it flowers and forms seed.
- Candymint Sargent crabapple (Malus ‘Candymint Sargent’) What’s the difference between a crabapple and an apple? Mainly the size: Any fruit less than an inch or so in diameter is commonly called a crabapple. Those small fruits also tend to be sour, as all apples were before several thousand years of selective breeding produced sweeter fruit from wild tree species found in Central Asia. Today’s crabapple varieties are bred for disease resistance and abundant flowers rather than the sweetness of their fruit (although birds still love to eat it). The Arboretum has dozens of cultivated varieties of flowering crabapples.