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Plant treasures in nature, for gardens and the urban environment

25 Feb 2016

A record number of participants at the ISU International Perennial Plant Conference in Grünberg

(ISU) “The international film world gathers at the Berlinale - Berlin international film festival, whilst international experts in horticulture come together in Grünberg”, was the opening statement made by Anja Maubach, the organiser and moderator of the
9th ISU International Perennial Plant Conference running from 12th – 14th February in Grünberg. The presence of more than 100 experts from 11 countries meant that there was a record number of participants as well as ensuring that there was an audience with the ability to provide inspiration from within its own ranks. Ideas about landscape gardening on top of urban landscaping were discussed in the breaks.

Experience with drought-tolerant and low-maintenance plants is in international demand. By way of an example, Tony Avent, USA referred to a range of Baptisia varieties which can retain their attractiveness at very high temperatures for weeks at a time without watering, which means they are suitable for an urban environment. Hans Kramer from the Netherlands also presented botanical treasures from his range.

You could think of the geographical area covered by the discussions in Grünberg as ranging from Spitzbergen to Chile and from England to Vietnam. Whilst Dan Hinkley, USA took us on a tour of his garden by Seattle, the garden designer, Arne Maynard presented his own garden creations in England.

In this day and age there are still plant hunters that do what it takes to get to the most far flung corners of the world in order to unearth as yet unknown plant treasures. Dan Hinkley gave an account of his travels to Myanmar, Vietnam and South China, Larz Danielsson, Sweden travelled around Chile and the botanist Magnus Lidén, Sweden embarked on a search for Corydalis in the mountains of North India and South China. Such plant treasures are to be found in the arctic botanic garden in Tromsø, presented by Arve Elvebakk, Norway. Anja Maubach from Wuppertal was our able guide leading us through the exciting programme of events.

The next set of ISU Winter Days is to take place on 10th – 12th February 2017.

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