A garden tucked into a park

As our car zipped down the highway into Minneapolis, we saw a sign for a garden.  Not too far away, we thought.  We remembered the garden a few days later and headed back to check it out with our old friend, Dick.  We hoped this wasn’t going to be a mistake as Dick has lived in Minneapolis almost 50 years and had never heard of it.

The Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary takes up only 15 acres in the 759-acre Theodore Wirth Regional Park.

We walked on all the Eloise Butler trails and were pleasantly surprised to discover that with 500 different flowering species in the garden, there were flowers blooming in September that we’d never seen before.

American Groundnut (Apios americana) have tubers that Native Americans boiled and ate like potatoes.

Both Bottle and Closed Gentian (Gentiana clausa Raf., Gentiana andrewsii Griseb) were planted in the garden.   The difference between the two can only be seen in the flower.

In a deeply wooded area, we looked down and saw these wonders.  Our daughter makes mushrooms out of meringue and dusts them with cocoa.  These looked just like hers!

Stunning lichen cascaded across the log.   The effect was so beautiful it didn’t look real.

We sat down with Dick on a bench to catch up.  We idly watched as other visitors appeared and disappeared on a distant hill. Birds and dragonflies flew by.

As we left the garden, we saw a number of red insects scurrying across the sidewalk.  What were they?

After a bit of searching, we discovered the answer:  boxelder bugs. They enjoy sunning themselves on a warm surface – which is probably why they were all gathered on the sidewalk.

After our visit we realized that the park had been aptly named: a “sanctuary”.  It was a refuge in these troubling times.  What a wonder to be surrounded by lovely flowers and magnificent trees!  This is a sanctuary not just for the birds.


September 2018



About simpletravelourway

Beth and Joe enjoy simple travel.
This entry was posted in US - miscellaneous and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to A garden tucked into a park

  1. Annette Davey says:

    lovely, interesting plants. thankyou

  2. Love the photos – looked like a very pleasant getaway spot.

  3. Part of the fun about showing friends around places you’ve lived in for years is playing tourist yourself and discovering new treasures you’d overlooked. And this wildflower garden is one of them! Anita

  4. The American Groundnut flower is beautiful. Great photos.

  5. Lucky you went back to see for yourself. What a nice way to spend some time.

  6. plaidcamper says:

    What a delightful sanctuary, and I loved the photographs accompanying this piece – almost magical!

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