The Wild, Wild East
This week’s guest is Uli Lorimer, the Curator of the Native Flora Garden at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG). The Native garden, celebrating its centennial year, exhibits indigenous plants that grow wild, or used to, in a 100-mile radius of BBG. Plantings focus on three eco-regions: Coastal Plain, Piedmont, and Highland, which blend and intersect to create a multitude of plant communities, nine of which are highlighted in the garden: serpentine rock, dry meadow, kettle pond, bog, pine barrens, wet meadow and stream, deciduous woodland, and limestone ledge, as well as a planting representing several representatives of the area's coniferous forests.
Spring is about to pop in the Native Flora Garden with some of Uli’s favorite ephemerals – plants that emerge from the ground, grow, flower, fruit and set seeds before the leaves of the deciduous treetop canopy shades them, and they become dormant. Some of these plants are bloodroot, trout lily, Mayapple, Dutchman’s breeches, squirrel corn and of course, many trillium species (left,Trillium grandiflorum; above, Uli Lorimer: photo by Romi Ige).