Category: Phipps Conservatory

  • Chrysanthemums at Phipps Conservatory

    The Fall Flower Show is over, but yesterday enough of the chrysanthemums were still in place for one last glimpse. These are hurried snapshots from a cell phone, but they give us some notion of the spectacle. Meanwhile, the Winter Flower Show is half installed, and already looks spectacular.


  • Elevator Shaft in the Tropical Forest at Phipps

    Of all the elevator shafts in Pittsburgh, the most elegant is probably this one—faced with stone, dripping with vines, and surrounded by lush vegetation—in the Indian Tropical Forest at Phipps Conservatory.

  • Fall Flower Show at Phipps

    The Fall Flower Show is perhaps the biggest event of the season at Phipps Conservatory. This year’s show is not a disappointment. Here is a dragon that has taken over the whole length of the Sunken Garden.

    This whimsical display is enlivened by the constant music of falling water raining from sunflower showerheads, spouting from fountains,and tumbling down a waterfall in the back.

    Outside, the leaves are changing colors, making quite a spectacle in the interior courtyards.

    This little arbor in the garden cleverly reflects the Gothic architecture of the original 1893 glasshouses.

  • Phipps Conservatory in Phipps Conservatory

    The latest incarnation of the Garden Railroad in the South Conservatory at Phipps includes this delightful little model of the original Phipps Conservatory as it appeared in 1893. The scale is not exact, but it’s still a very convincing illusion from certain angles.

  • Center for Sustainable Landscapes at Phipps

    Phipps Conservatory’s new Center for Sustainable Landscapes will be open soon. Here we see part of it against a late-September sunset.

  • Orchid Show at Phipps

    A few more pictures from the orchid show at Phipps Conservatory, which really need no explanation.

  • Indian Tropical Forest at Phipps

    The Tropical Forest at Phipps has been redesigned to represent India for the next three years. According to the staff, more than three quarters of the plants had to be replaced, as we see in the picture below, taken a few weeks earlier when the transformation was in process.

  • Slipper Orchids at Phipps

    It’s slipper-orchid season at Phipps—mostly in the orchid room, although right now the whole conservatory is filled with thousands of orchids for the annual winter orchid show. Father Pitt did not take down the exact names of these specimens, so if you want more information you’ll just have to go see them yourself. Above, an unusual Papihiopedilum.

    Another Paphiopedilum.

    A very elegant Phragmipedium.

    Phragmipedium with a bit more of a laissez-faire attitude to personal grooming.

    We’ll be seeing more of Phipps Conservatory this week, because Father Pitt loves Phipps in the winter, and he has a bit of a backlog of pictures.

  • Nutcrackers at Phipps

    The Winter Flower Show at Phipps Conservatory has a Nutcracker theme this year. But, as usual, it’s just an excuse to show off mounds of Poinsettias and countless other flowers. After you’ve taken in the Poinsettias, you might want to look out for the various other species of Euphorbia that the gardeners have sprinkled through the displays as a sort of botanical in-joke.

    This delightful miniature Victorian conservatory can be found in the Orchid Room.

    Sometimes the scenes in the garden railroad (in the South Conservatory) repay a closer look.

    This is the first time old Pa Pitt has seen a clock with a frame made of succulents.

    In the Broderie.

  • Purple Beautyberry (Callicarpa dichotoma)

    In the fall, the bright purple berries of this East Asian bush make a stunning contrast to the chartreuse-yellow leaves. This plant was growing in the Discovery Garden at Phipps Conservatory.