October 21st, 2014
Our last garden trip of the year is ready, and it’ll feature a shopping trip to one of D.C.’s best garden centers and an afternoon visit to the U.S. Botanic Garden, decorated for Christmas.
The bus day trip is scheduled for Fri., Dec. 5, and includes pickups on both the East and West Shores.
The cost is $125 per person, which includes transportation, a catered lunch, and dinner at Mrs. K’s Toll House, a restaurant we’ve been to before that got rave reviews from the group.
Lowee’s Group Tours of Harrisburg is handling the booking by calling 717-657-9658 or toll-free 888-345-6933.
We’re leaving at 7 and 7:30 a.m. and spending the morning at Merrifield Garden Center, a local chain of three garden centers that serves the Washington metro area.
We’re going to their newest place, the Gainesville store, which is a modern and sprawling place that has just about everything for the gardener – bagged goods, gift items, a tropical greenhouse, trees and shrubs, water-garden supplies, fresh-cut flowers… you name it.
For Christmas, Merrifield has all sorts of fresh greenery for decorating as well as a Christmas shop filled with ornaments, tree-toppers, ribbons, lights and candles. We’ll have a couple of hours there, including a catered lunch before we get back on the bus to the U.S. Botanic Garden at the Capitol complex.
The highlight of the U.S. Botanic Garden is the conservatory, which this year is planning a Christmas display called “Season’s Greenings” that will feature 15 historic lighthouses and sea creatures, mermaids and a pirate ship all made out of plant parts.
The exhibit includes the popular model train village with small-gauge trains running through decorated vistas.
We’ll have time to see those and the rest of the conservatory with its amazing collection of plants from around the world, ranging from a tropical rainforest to a desert.
Barring atrocious weather, the visit allows time to see the 3-acre National Garden outside the conservatory, which features a large garden of mid-Atlantic native plants, a rose garden, the First Ladies Water Garden dedicated to America’s first ladies, and a butterfly garden.