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What was in Bloom

Mid May

From mid-May until the end of May, the Park’s color palette is primarily white.  As spring was arriving in early March, the golden yellows of forsythia, daffodils and our numerous Cornelian Cherry Dogwoods caught our eye; then the pinks and purples of the Kanzan Cherry Trees, the tulips and the magnolias captured our attention in April and early May.


White now has center stage.  The Spirea bushes are throughout the Park with their arching branches of white flowers that create layered cascades of tiny white flowers in mid-May. 


Sprirea japonica

Playground Walk, Flagpole Lawn Garden, Peter Pan Garden

Now, in 2018, when you visit the Peter Pan Circle, the spirea bushes are once again filling the east side of the Circle - as they did long ago.  At some point in the last forty years, the Eastern half of the Peter Pan garden was designed as semi-circular rows of white Spirea, white (non-sterile) Rose of Sharon and lastly, yellow Forsythia.  The Spirea bushes have been rejuvenated and the semi-circle has been enhanced with new shrubs.  Two Kousa Dogwood trees tower above the Spireas, with large, floppy creamy white four-petalled flowers.  Underneath the Kousas, the Double File Viburnums fill the background with their large flowers in an orderly arrangement of  two rows on each branch.


Beautiful, floriforous Kousa Dogwoods are also found along Playground Walk with several Double File Viburnums.

Cornus kousa

Playground Walk

Across from the white array of spirea, dogwoods and kousas, there are white azaleas on the north and south sides of Peter Pan near the Bridge.  Our gardeners call these the Right Bank and the Left Bank. We know from the landscape plans of 1936 that there were intentions to plant hundreds of azaleas in our Park.  Short of old photos to confirm that they were planted, we are left guessing.  In recent years, it has taken serious annual efforts to establish azaleas in the Park. 

Azaleas in white and rasberry

Rhododendron tsutsuti

Peter Pan Circle, next to the London Plane Tree


Rhododendron Tsutsusi

North Woodland Hill

One of the most beautiful displays of white flowers in the Park is in the garden bed just west of the Flagpole.  The Spirea is the largest in the Park. The Deutzia is dazzling with its abundance of delicate blooms.


Spirea japonica

Garden west of Flagpole Lawn



Garden west of Flagpole Lawn

Younger Deutzias are found along Polly Gordon Walk and Playground Walk.  Someday, the corner opposite the 84th Street entrance will be dominated by this wonderful shrub.

Double File Viburnum

Viburnum plicatum

Playground Walk

Flower of Double File Viburnum

Viburnum plicatum

Solomon’s Seal

Polygonatum odoratum

Playground Walk

Common Hawthorne

Crataegus monogyna

Peter Pan Circle

Winter King Hawthorne

Crataegus viridis ‘Winter King’

North Lawn at edge of Esplanade



West Edge of South Woodland Hill

Snowball Viburnum

Viburnum opulus ‘Snowball’

North Pram Stairs

Sweet Woodruff

Asperula odorata

Throughout the Park in the shade at ground level

Brightly colored flowers are beginning to appear in the garden beds throughout the Park and change almost weekly. 

Here are a few highlights:

Pink Champagne Clematis

Clematis ‘Pink Champagne’

Edge of Esplanade south of Pram Stairs

At the North end of the Park, there are a host of bright, cheerful flowers.



Just emerging


Primula vulgaris



Variegated Weigelia


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