Every holiday season in Washington, I look forward to escaping the winter cold by taking a quick tropical break at the United States Botanic Garden. The dry heat in the desert environment and the warm humidity in the lush tropical rainforest immediately transport you hundreds of miles away. The colourful orchids also have a way of brightening up any grey day!
Of course, this year, there’s not much winter chills to be escaped, but I still looked forward to visiting the indoor garden for another reason: the annual display of National Mall landmarks made out of dried plant materials in the Garden Court. I’m always amazed at how detailed the structures are. For the bigger structures like that of the US Capitol, Paul Busse and his team at Applied Imagination can spend up to 600 hours turning pine cone scales, acorn caps and cinnamon sticks into intricate works of art! Check it out:
In addition to the replicas, there’s also a train display in the East Gallery that perfect for young children. Be warned though, there’s typically a long line to get into that exhibit. Otherwise, it’s free as well, just like the rest of the Botanic Garden. Season’s Greenings typically opens the day after Thanksgiving and closes right after the new years. For 2016, the exhibit is open until January 3rd, 2016.