N° 46 — March 23, 2021
Happy spring! Please enjoy our regular updates and insights from FONA, the U.S. National Arboretum, and our award-winning Washington Youth Garden.
Award Season
Washington Youth Garden is honored to receive the American Horticultural Society's Jane L. Taylor Award this year as we embark on our 50th anniversary serving our community.

Given in honor of Jane L. Taylor, a youth advocate, horticulturalist, and educator, this award is "given to an individual, organization, or program that has inspired and nurtured future horticulturalists through efforts in children's and youth gardening."

We're excited to continue nurturing curious minds and healthy bodies by connecting youth to food, the land, and each other.

Our garden team has been busy preparing for spring and building new cedar raised beds. As seen here, these beds are uniquely designed to serve as a hands-on classroom for students. The team will soon install benches so students can gather round for garden classes and volunteers and staff can comfortably maintain the plots.

Thank you to the donors who made this project possible! Your donations to our SeedMoney fundraising campaign last fall enable us to convert an often water-logged part of our garden into an engaging classroom and usable growing space.

Spring in the City
Early-blooming cherries are opening up at the National Arboretum — the Arboretum's wide variety of cherry trees means bloom season lasts longer than many other parts of the city.

The Arboretum has a 3.2-mile long self-guided tour so you can enjoy and learn about the blossoms. Please note that weekends get busy this time of year.

Here's how to access the tour:

Tree #26 on the Arboretum's cherry tree tour recently moved across the road to make room for a new rain garden. Photo from: U.S. National Arboretum
There's one change to the cherry tour this year — tree #26 was moved to a new location! It was relocated to make room for a new rain garden near the R Street gate which will capture runoff from Mt. Hamilton and allow it to filter into the ground.

How does one move a cherry tree? With a very big shovel. An 80 inch tree spade was used to move this particular tree.
Digging In: Eagle Drama at the Arboretum
Dig in with the experts and learn about the drama at the bald eagle nest. Learn from National Arboretum field technician Sue Greeley, DC DOEE fisheries and wildlife biologist Dan Rauch, and American Eagle Foundation educational content specialist Dr. Robyn Miller as they discuss the lives, loves, and history of the National Arboretum's bald eagles.

This recorded event is the first installment of our new Digging In virtual event series. FONA members will receive an invitation to join the next live session.

Photo from: U.S. National Arboretum
Plant Expert in your Pocket
Ever need help identifying flowers and plants on your walks? BloomCatch is a new app that uses image recognition software and input from local experts to help you identify and learn about flowers, plants, and trees.

BloomCatch was recently recognized as a "top startup to watch in 2021" and donates 10% of its profits back to Washington Youth Garden and City Blossoms!

Vendor Corner
Although the Lahr and Garden Fair plant sales are both cancelled this year, there are still ways to support the wonderful vendors.

Washington Gardener Magazine is the publication for DC, MD, and VA area gardeners. They also produce a free weekly podcast, GardenDC, about all things gardening-related.

The Arboretum is open every day from 8 AM - 5 PM except December 25th. Some buildings and collections remain closed to ensure visitor and staff safety.