Are you ready for some COLOR?

Wednesday April 16, 2014

Are you ready for some COLOR?

After that long, long winter, we say, “Yes!”

It’s an Amazing April in St. Louis so check out the colorful splashes of Flower Power around the STL while they last.

missouri botanical garden“This April, we’re a little bit behind with the crummy weather we’ve had,” Holly Berthold, spokeswoman for the Missouri Botanical Garden, said. “Last year the tulips were up and gone by now and the irises and flowering cherries were going full force. But this year everything seems to be running two to three weeks behind.”

Spring may be taking its time coming this year but a number of venues in St. Louis are awash with the color of the earliest flowers of the season. Magnolia trees, among the earliest blooming trees, are already putting on their annual flashy purplish-pink show, and daffodils are turning hillsides yellow.

“Flowering cherries, which ‘everyone just adores’ are a favorite at the Garden,” Berthold said.  “We get asked all the time, ‘Are they coming? Are they coming?’ You really kind of get a sense of how many fans we have of those flowering cherries. The flowering cherry trees usually peak in mid to late April but they are running late, too. Flowers may be lagging in making their appearance this year but once they’re up, admire them quickly because they’re gone fast. The flowering cherries, for example, last only six to 10 days. This year the azaleas aren’t even budding yet, but they will be coming soon in pretty splashes of scarlett and pink and even yellow.”

Here are some other places you can experience Amazing April in St. Louis:

Forest Park: There are tons of places to enjoy flower power in St. Louis’ 1,300-acre playground-in-the-city. A wash of yellow daffodils lines the drive to the Missouri History Museum, tulips spring forth at the Lagoon/Skinker entrance to the park and at the World’s Fair and Hampton Roundabouts, and crabapple and cherry groves will soon be adding a splash of color at the Jewish Memorial.

Jewell BoxOver at the Jewel Box, a unique vintage greenhouse in Forest Park is where visitors can view flowers year-round. Yellow reigns at an outdoor bed of daffodils while at another outdoor bed tulips are “up and starting to open,” said Tina Rein, garden supervisor for the St. Louis Parks Department. “With the lag caused by cool weather, the tulips are slower in opening. It’ll probably be Easter weekend (when they’re fully open), and they’ll look terrific.”

“Another great spot for flower lovers is Pagoda Circle in front of the Muni Opera,” Rein said. “The daffodils are up, and they look pretty terrific. Everything’s been cut back and just waiting on spring to come, and things will start popping up. There’s a big selection of perennials there.”

City Garden: This incredible oasis of nature and art in the middle of the urban core features native Missouri trees, shrubs, grasses, ground covers and wildflowers. Daffodils and irises provide spring color. Visitors can enjoy a setting of lush plantings as they relax amid renowned sculpture and landscaping studded with imaginative uses of water and stone.

Faust County Park: At this unique park in West County, daffodils and magnolias are creating a colorful show. While you’re at the park, check out The Sofia M. Sachs Butterfly Garden, the historic carousel, the historic village and Thornhill, home of Missouri’s second governor.

Jefferson Barracks Park: “The recently renamed Laborer’s House Garden–now called the John and Bonnie Lorenz Wedding Garden–is sporting a colorful display of early spring flowers,” said St. Louis County Parks Director Tom Ott. This historic park overlooking the Mississippi River was a U. S. Army post from 1826 to 1946.

Queeny Park: Colorful flowers currently in bloom in this popular park can be viewed at the Mason Road side of the park from the entrance to the American Kennel Museum of the Dog and around the Queeny barn to the Jarville Garden. Ott suggests returning when the lilacs are in bloom. A double hedge of the fragrant blossoms runs between the barn and the Garden–with a walkway between them. When the lilacs are blooming, “It’s just gorgeous,” Ott said. And if daffodils and tulips aren’t your favorite, just wait a while. “The red buds are just getting ready to push out a bit of color.”

It may be a bit late in coming this year, but there’s no doubt–spring, glorious spring has arrived in St. Louis!

Guest Blogger Kathie Sutin a freelance writer from St. Louis, Missouri contributed to this blog.

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