Places To Go, Things To Do… the U’s Arboretum

The drive into the Arboretum

Earlier this month, my dear friend and Minnesota native and I spent a Saturday at the U’s Arboretum (For those of you not from here, U means University of Minnesota. Lazy.) Anyway, we drove out past Edina a few zillion miles into apple orchard territory.  Here is a gem of the Twin Cities.  Apparently, most Minnesotans recall visiting the Arboretum when they were a little kid, but haven’t spent much time there since.  My humble newcomer advice: revisit your childhood at the Arboretum! http://www.arboretum.umn.edu/

family in fall

Brr.

It was a damp-ish, slate grey-cloudy, wind cuts through your coat kind of autumn day.  We wore mittens and scarves and hats and walked around to see the array of leaves aflame with crimson and marigold hues. The biting breeze knocked their stems from the maple branches and whipped them toward the ground as we walked down brick pathways and under iron gate arches.  There are miles of tree-arched paths and arches to walk, ride, and get lost on.  A midwest tree canopy. Pretty. Photo op.

Feels English gardeny.

I love the flow from red to yellow.

We were sure to catch some of the indoor activities at the Arboretum as well, to include their collection of warty and delightfully vibrant pumpkins and gourds. And, they were all named! Just to be appreciated. Little Guy (see below)was most aptly named and also most cute as it stood dwarfed by two enormous pumpkins and the giant green goose gourd.  We went to the used book sale. mmm. nothing like books for under $2. I tried to hold back since I have at least fifteen books currently in the lineup (as soon as summer hits, and the required fourth grade literature subsides, I’ll tackle it!).

Pretty garden sculpture of an ant mound

Orchids in the Greenhouse

Finally (the grand Pooh-Bah of Arboretum activities), we did an apple tasting. They grow hybrids and variations of apples at the Arboretum orchard (a delicious version of science).  We got to taste two varieties (one of them three times. shhh.) as the apple connoisseurs eloquently described their woody/earthy/mellow/maple-like tastes and tannins as well as score them on taste, texture, etc. etc. I don’t exactly remember the rubric criteria. Free apples, for goodness sake.  You’ll notice there are no photos of this. We were too excited to eat the apples. Seriously.

Toad, from MarioBros, made an appearance.

The goose.

Little Guy.

On a photographer’s note, I finally got a cord to upload real photos (adios cell pics and archived photos. YAY!)

Stay cozy.

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