Rows of exotic plants, flowers, trees and fruits, make The Longwood gardens a paradise for Botanists. Located in Kenett square, Pennsylvania, United States, in the Brandywine Creek Valley, the Longwood gardens consist of, over 1,077 acres of gardens, meadows and woodlands. The Longwood gardens have their arms wide open throughout the year, for visitors to come and enjoy the exotic plants and Horticulture. The gardens are open to educational lectures, courses and workshops. There are a lot of people who willingly participate in the events taking place in the gardens.
A little into history..
The present day Longwood gardens were earlier a working farm. Originally called Peirce’s park, the garden was open to the public since its first days. The owners of the park had accumulated one of the finest collections of exotic trees in the nation of United States.
An industrialist of that time Pierre S. du Pont, bought the farm and saved the trees from getting hacked down. The farm was now a private estate. Du Pont added extensively to the property. Additions such as the gigantic conservatory, a humongous Pipe Organ, a musical instrument commonly used in Churches and Cathedrals, were made. The Gardens were decorated with large systems of fountains. All in all, the Longwood gardens could be called a perfect imitation of the gardens of Eden. They are a paradise for botanists, bird watchers and people looking for solace away from the city and into nature’s lap.
Presently, the Longwood gardens consist of 20 indoor gardens and 20 outdoor gardens. These gardens exist in the 4.5 acre, heated conservatories also referred to as Green houses. These green houses, comprise of all sorts of exotic plants and trees within them. The gardens contain 11,000 different species of trees and plants within its boundaries. Trees of all shapes, sizes and origins exist in these gardens. The fountains spread all across the gardens, cut the monotony of the green with pearl white, making the combination an absolute treat to the eyes.
The gardens have a number of educational programs, which include a two year tuition free school of Horticulture, a graduate program and offer various other internships. Around 800 horticultural and performing arts events are hosted at the gardens every year. Events ranging from flower show, courses, gardening demonstrations, children programs, to concerts, from organ and carillon recitals, musical theatre, to fountain shows and firework displays, all find shelter in the garden, you name it and its there. If you are out in a holiday season during Christmas, the garden has an elaborate display of lights in store for you.
Information for aspiring Botanists, the massive conservatory situated at the Longwood gardens, is one of the world’s greatest greenhouse structures, which is a home to some 5,500 types of plants. A tour of the 20 indoor gardens, spanning a half mile, shall consume an hour and a half. The greenhouse gardens, each with its own special display of plants, include the Orangery, Silver gardens, acacia passage, orchid house, cascade garden, palm house, Mediterranean garden, tropical terrace and the outdoor water garden display. These displays are as beautiful and exotic as their names. The gardens have undergone a lot renovations and expansions, since the time they were constructed.
This beautiful gift of nature attracted around 900,000 visitors in the year 2009. West 8, a Dutch Architecture and Urban Planning firm, that has its headquarters in Rotterdam and an office in New York City, was hired to execute the plans laid down for the growth and expansion of the Longwood gardens, for the next four decades. The motive West 8 set for itself was to celebrate Longwood, enjoy it, preserve it, keep it, while looking for ways to make it function as a splendid place for a larger group of people in the 21st Century.
The most eye catching feature of the Longwood gardens is the massive Pipe Organ designed by Firmin Swinnen, a Belgian musician who moved to the United States and became a popular theatre organist in New York City. The Organ’s pipes filled fourteen railway freight cars and they needed a 72 horsepower blower motor to supply wind pressure. The Pipe Organ was one of the largest musical instruments to have been installed in a private residence. When the four manual Pipe Organ plays in the Longwood Garden ballroom the melodious sounds of it, can be heard all throughout the conservatory, when the adjoining panel windows are left open. The Organ itself has undergone renovation lately.
If you have always been attracted to fairytales and believe in the fact that trees and flowers and the soothing sounds of trickling water, all have healing powers. If trees manage to capture your attention, if flowers make you thank nature, just by the mere sight of theirs. If you are an ardent admirer of nature’s beauty. If you too get surprised by the play and display of colors and hues that are present in nature’s palate. If you are tired of living a monotonous life, in the concrete city jungles and want a respite, that shall work as a balm to soothe your sore soul, then this nature’s bounty awaits your arrival!