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Baltimore's Rawlings Conservatory & Botanic Garden

The Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens was opened in 1888 and is the second oldest in the US; admission was $5 and, due to Covid, required a timed, advance reservation

The Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens was opened in 1888 and is the second oldest in the US; admission was $5 and, due to Covid, required a timed, advance reservation

The Conservatory is located in Baltimore's largest park, Druid Hill; the 745 acre park is among the oldest landscaped public parks in the country and also houses the Maryland Zoo

The Conservatory is located in Baltimore's largest park, Druid Hill; the 745 acre park is among the oldest landscaped public parks in the country and also houses the Maryland Zoo

The Conservatory says red velvet ginger is native to Australia yet Wikipedia says Costa Rica so take your pick; I just like the uniqueness and color scheme with the species pollinated by hummingbirds

The Conservatory says red velvet ginger is native to Australia yet Wikipedia says Costa Rica so take your pick; I just like the uniqueness and color scheme with the species pollinated by hummingbirds

What perfect golden, barrel cacti!; the species is endangered in its native Mexico with much of its habitat destroyed when a dam was built in the state of Hidalgo

What perfect golden, barrel cacti!; the species is endangered in its native Mexico with much of its habitat destroyed when a dam was built in the state of Hidalgo

The Palm House was the original Conservatory building and is the second oldest glass and steel building still in use in the US; these houses were the rage in Victorian times as the wealthy acquired plants during their travels

The Palm House was the original Conservatory building and is the second oldest glass and steel building still in use in the US; these houses were the rage in Victorian times as the wealthy acquired plants during their travels

The Toothpick Cactus is native to the deserts and dry forest (Gran Chaco) of Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay with adults growing to 25  ft; the species is certainly aptly named!

The Toothpick Cactus is native to the deserts and dry forest (Gran Chaco) of Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay with adults growing to 25+ ft; the species is certainly aptly named!

Native to Mexico, this Queen Victoria Agave in the Desert House has a 12 ft tall flower spike that is pushing the bounds of the ceiling; despite being small, there were lots of interesting species here

Native to Mexico, this Queen Victoria Agave in the Desert House has a 12 ft tall flower spike that is pushing the bounds of the ceiling; despite being small, there were lots of interesting species here

The yellow flowers appear only rarely on the bunny ears cactus; instead of spines the plant has tiny glochids which detach en masse when touched and will cause considerable skin irritation

The yellow flowers appear only rarely on the bunny ears cactus; instead of spines the plant has tiny glochids which detach en masse when touched and will cause considerable skin irritation

There are 30,000  species of orchids and 100,000  registered hybrids; the Conservatory is run by the city and, given its small size, could never be a profitable operation

There are 30,000+ species of orchids and 100,000+ registered hybrids; the Conservatory is run by the city and, given its small size, could never be a profitable operation

The other cacti in the Desert House were dwarfed by this massive yucca; Joshua trees are a variety of yucca and the yucca is also the state flower of New Mexico

The other cacti in the Desert House were dwarfed by this massive yucca; Joshua trees are a variety of yucca and the yucca is also the state flower of New Mexico

The Ponderosa Lemon originated in 1887in Hagerstown MD as a chance seedling that is a natural hybrid of pomelo and citron; while these monster fruit are much larger than that of a normal lemon, they have the same flavor and acidity

The Ponderosa Lemon originated in 1887in Hagerstown MD as a chance seedling that is a natural hybrid of pomelo and citron; while these monster fruit are much larger than that of a normal lemon, they have the same flavor and acidity

Lace Aloe is native to Lesotho and South Africa with its nectar-rich, tubular orange flowers attracting birds, bees, and wasps easily; botany lovers really need to visit the Cape Town region for unique plants

Lace Aloe is native to Lesotho and South Africa with its nectar-rich, tubular orange flowers attracting birds, bees, and wasps easily; botany lovers really need to visit the Cape Town region for unique plants

The Black Rose Aeonium is a beautiful succulent whose stems hold large, terminal rosettes of very dark purple, almost black, leaves; the unique colors have made it a popular with landscape gardeners

The Black Rose Aeonium is a beautiful succulent whose stems hold large, terminal rosettes of very dark purple, almost black, leaves; the unique colors have made it a popular with landscape gardeners

Colorful bloom on an Indian fig cactus (aka prickly pear); this species is the most widespread and most commercially important cactus grown primarily as a fruit crop but also for the vegetable nopales

Colorful bloom on an Indian fig cactus (aka prickly pear); this species is the most widespread and most commercially important cactus grown primarily as a fruit crop but also for the vegetable nopales

Although strikingly similar in appearance, the Madagascar ocotillo here is not closely related to the ocotillo of the Sonoran Deserts in North America

Although strikingly similar in appearance, the Madagascar ocotillo here is not closely related to the ocotillo of the Sonoran Deserts in North America

The Orchid Room, like all other parts of the Conservatory, was quite small but full of gorgeous blooms; 1 in 10 of the earth’s plant species is an orchid!

The Orchid Room, like all other parts of the Conservatory, was quite small but full of gorgeous blooms; 1 in 10 of the earth’s plant species is an orchid!

This Kenyan cactus just looked too much like lots of snakes to me!; the Conservatory is named for the father of former Baltimore mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake

This Kenyan cactus just looked too much like lots of snakes to me!; the Conservatory is named for the father of former Baltimore mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake

Known for its bright red, fuzzy, caterpillar-like flowers, chenille is an evergreen plant commonly grown as a seasonal annual or houseplant; it is endemic to areas around Malaysia but now has widespread adaptation

Known for its bright red, fuzzy, caterpillar-like flowers, chenille is an evergreen plant commonly grown as a seasonal annual or houseplant; it is endemic to areas around Malaysia but now has widespread adaptation

Most plants in the Tropical House were identified but some, like this cool spiky species, were not; I was surprised at how crowded the Conservatory was given its out of the way location and small size

Most plants in the Tropical House were identified but some, like this cool spiky species, were not; I was surprised at how crowded the Conservatory was given its out of the way location and small size

Posted by VagabondCowboy 23:57

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