Garden Lovers’ Book Sale: April 7 and 8

Coming up on April 7 and 8 at the Center for Urban Horticulture, you’ll have a chance to shop a selection of thousands of used gardening, horticulture, botany and landscape design books at the 12th annual Elisabeth C. Miller Library Garden Lovers’ Book Sale!

Be among the first to browse the books at a party with silent auction on Friday, April 7, from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets to the party are $25 in advance or $30 at the door, and your purchase directly funds the Miller Library book budget. Enjoy a glass of wine, mingle with other gardening enthusiasts, and bid on specially selected books in the silent auction. To purchase tickets to the party, contact the library at 206.543.0415.

Then, on Saturday, April 8, the book sale will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free, and shoppers will find a wide range of topics on all things horticultural—and at great prices.

All proceeds from the book sale will be used to purchase the best new horticultural books and journals for the library. Original artwork from the Pacific Northwest Botanical Artists will also be on exhibit and for sale for the entire month of April.

Photography Exhibition: An Intimate View of Wild Lands

This month, from January 4 through 30, the Elisabeth C. Miller Library at the UW Botanic Gardens is hosting a photography exhibition, “An Intimate View of Wild Lands,” featuring Richard Dunford, the son of SEFS alumnus Earl Gerald Dunford (’35, B.S.).

Richard started as a large-format film photographer 45 years ago and just recently converted to digital. His primary photographic interest has always been in Pacific Northwest landscapes, particularly public forest lands, trees and moving water. He is retired from a career in medicine and science and is currently living in Bellevue, Wash., with his wife of 28 years and two corgis.

Read more about his exhibition below, and we hope you get a chance to explore his wonderful photographs!

2017_01_richard-dunford1Artist Statement
My father, a graduate of the University of Washington College of Forestry, was career U.S. Forest Service. With him I’ve lived in and walked through some of our country’s finest remote wild lands, including the national forests of the Smoky Mountains, Rocky Mountains, Sierras and Cascades. My mother was from Oklahoma and not a forest person, but she was a determined amateur painter. This sentiment for forests and artistic DNA merged some 45 years ago when I picked up Ansel Adams’ book, The Range of Light. It was a new day for me and I went looking for a 4×5 camera.

This exhibition is mostly about trees, and I want you to see them differently from how you may have looked at them before. We mostly think of tree color at peak in autumn—full of color and beautiful to behold, but commonplace photographically and easily overdone. I only nibble at the edges of autumn because there is so much more out there. My best photographic time is from late autumn into late spring. Summers are best early morning and late afternoon even for backlit subjects.

These are primarily digital capture photos from the western and eastern Cascade slopes, Puget Sound and central Washington scablands. Many are from the soggy forest in overcast and rain where winter light is subdued and color vibrant and saturated. Others are from the dry eastern side where there is surprisingly expansive color. There you have to look for it in nooks and crannies and it can be unruly and difficult to control. In each region, there is a uniqueness that requires a customized approach for weather, time of year, time of day. One constant, though, is midday on a sunny summer afternoon. Those are best for a nap.

Forests are a confused and disordered visual experience. When we walk in a deep forest, we rarely focus on a single tree, there is also the environment. Where the tree lives is sometimes more important than the tree itself. Without an environment, one tree is not much different from the next. This is why my images rarely show a single focal point of interest. They are often an assortment of spaces in what might be called a “tableau” or “mosaic” effect. The tree must share visual interest with its cluttered surround. It is messy, to be sure, but it is my job as an artist and a quiet personal victory to be able to use color, light and shape to make order out of this landscape.

Photographs © Richard Dunford.

Richard Dunford

Patty Haller Art Exhibit: “Forest Sampling”

Later this winter and spring, from February 16 to March 30, the Elisabeth C. Miller Library will be hosting an art exhibit by Patty Haller, a Seattle oil painter with a studio in nearby Magnuson Park.

2015_12_Patty Haller1Haller enjoys applying visual concepts from art history to Pacific coastal woodland imagery. Her new series, “Forest Sampling,” was inspired by an exercise she did long ago as a forestry student at SEFS (’84, B.S.), where she studied forest ecology with Professor David R. M. Scott. Her work is included in the permanent collections of several area hospitals and the Anacortes Arts Festival organization.

We hope you’ll head over to the library and take a look at her work!

Photos/painting © Patty Haller.

2015_12_Patty Haller2

Elisabeth C. Miller Library Hosts Rare Book Viewing

On Tuesday, October 14, the Elisabeth C. Miller Library hosted a rare book viewing featuring selections from the private library of Darrell Allen, a botanical book collector and member of the Seattle Book Club.

Rare Book Viewing

Book collector Darrell Allen shared 30 volumes from his private library for the open house.

Allen, who began collecting in 1970, specializes in books produced from 1600 to 1900, a period he describes as the “golden age of botanical and horticultural discovery, created by the great desire to explore the new continents and colonize them. These magnificent books were financed by wealthy landowners, lords, kings and scholars of botany and medicine. Botanists and botanical artists were sent on voyages of discovery. They collected seeds and made sketches of the plants and their habitats. They brought the seeds back to England, France, Holland, Germany and Austria. The seeds were planted on the backers’ estates, and the surplus plants were marketed through nurseries. The sketches were turned into hand-colored engravings and were sold by subscription in bookstores, often in a packet of four to six illustrations.”

Today, Allen’s collection includes 70 titles containing 350 volumes. The books are illustrated with 18,000 engravings and lithographs, many of them colored, and were produced from 1608 to 1892, with the majority created between 1700 and 1850.

For the viewing at the Elisabeth C. Miller Library, Allen selected a sampling of these extremely rare volumes—representing works from Austria, England, France, Germany and Holland—and he was on hand to discuss the books with about 80 visitors who stopped by during the three-hour open house.

Very cool!

Photo of books ©  Brian Thompson; photo of Darrell Allen at the showing (below, second from right) © Jessica Anderson.

Rare Book Viewing

Interactive Arboretum Map is Now Live!

Tracy Mehlin, information technology librarian for the Elisabeth C. Miller Library, passed along the exciting news that the new Washington Park Arboretum Interactive Map has officially launched!

The project started in August 2012 with a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to survey the Arboretum and digitize paper inventory maps. Now, the online, interactive map identifies landmarks, trails, gardens and every woody plant growing in the Arboretum. It can be browsed or searched, and users can turn layers on and off, measure distances, draw a custom route and print out a custom map.

It’s an incredibly comprehensive resource, with applications for everyone from faculty and students to visitors and researchers around the world, so get in there and start exploring!

Arboretum Interactive Map

Miller Library Book Sale: April 4 and 5!

Coming up the first weekend of April is the annual Elisabeth C. Miller Library Garden Lovers’ Book Sale. It’s the biggest event of the year and an important fundraiser for the library—not to mention a great time—so mark your calendars and come join the fun!

Miller Library Book SaleThe festivities kick off on Friday, April 4, with a Wine and Cheese Preview Party from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $20, there’s a silent auction of especially interesting books, and you’ll find plenty of appetizers (enough to make a meal for most people). The following day, Saturday, April 5, the book sale runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. It’s free and open to the public, and all sales go to benefit the Miller Library.

So head over and support the Miller Library, and take part in a wonderful tradition at our school!

Want to chip in?
The library is still collecting book donations! Specifically, they’re looking for new or gently used books that are plant-related, such as about botany, landscape design, horticulture, landscape restoration, etc. Books can be brought to the library, located within the Center for Urban Horticulture, anytime during open hours right up until the day of the sale (Mondays, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.).

To purchase party tickets or for more information about making a book donation, contact Martha Ferguson or call the Miller Library at 206.543.0415.

News Bulletin … About the Bulletin!

If plants are your passion, and you enjoy incisive articles about invasive species, then you’re probably already familiar with the Washington Park Arboretum Bulletin, the quarterly horticultural journal of the Arboretum Foundation.

Washington Park Arboretum BulletinA benefit of membership in the foundation, the Bulletin features all sorts of stories about Arboretum collections and history, as well as general information for gardeners and horticulturists in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. If you’d like to take a peek inside an issue, you can pick up a copy in the Graham Visitors Center lobby for $5, and you can also browse a selection of stories in the online archive. There’s a ton of great stuff in there!

Speaking of which, the Fall 2013 issue includes a piece by our very own Brian Thompson, manager and curator of the Elisabeth C. Miller Library.

In Thompson’s aptly titled article, “New Books for Pacific Northwest Gardeners (PDF),” he reviews a selection of publications by local authors, including Gardening for Sustainability, by John Albers, and How to Buy the Right Plants, Tools & Garden Supplies, by Jim Fox.

If you’d like to learn more about the Bulletin, or possibly submit an article idea yourself, contact Niall Dunne, communications manager for the Arboretum Foundation!