Flashback to the past

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The original garden beds at Kansas City Museum. Submitted photo

Northeast News
June 13, 2012

The Joseph’s Coat had long since withered, along with the marguerite daisies and petunias.

What used to be an intricately designed garden was now a grassy lawn.

Circa 1910, the Robert A. Long family’s estate, now the Kansas City Museum, featured lush and colorful landscaped beds. Every year, the family replanted the annuals, and now, the Kansas City Museum is replanting that same garden.

Through the use of old estate photographs, the Kansas City Museum has recreated four of the beds. To find out what plants the Long family would have used, the Kansas City Museum enlisted the help of the Westport Garden Club, who aided in the research.

“It’s really neat,” Kansas City Museum Community Relations Specialist Andrew Mouzin said of the gardens. “It’s going to be really nice once it’s finished and everything is in full bloom. It will bring a nice freshness to the museum.”

Landscape installers with The Greensman began installing the beds on Monday, May 21, and were nearly finished by May 24.

Beds located at the back of the museum feature celosia red plum, mandevilla, petunias, a banana tree, among others. Two rectangle beds line the walkway of the front entrance and include cannas, caster beans, salvia varieties and more.

All of the plants are annuals, which the museum plans to re-plant each year.

“I think it’s a really exciting opportunity to begin,” said Museum Director Christopher Leitch. “They hint at the lushness and richness of the visitor’s experience we hope to provide in the future. They’re a taste of things to come, but also a taste of what has been.”

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Doroteo Avalos puts the finishing touches on a plant. Leslie Collins

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Landscape installers from The Greensman recreate the 1910 circa garden beds. Leslie Collins

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