From the conservatory in winter to spring bulbs and native wildflowers, to the perennial, gateway, and Great Lakes gardens, there’s always something blooming at Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum.

In July and August, the Gateway Garden at Matthaei moves into its prime, with perennials and many New World annuals putting on a show through the first frost. (Scroll down for a gallery of what’s-in-bloom photos.)

New Matthaei-Nichols Garden Manager Doug Conley says he’d like to create “aha” moments in the Gateway Garden and other spaces. One project will be building up a new shrub layer. Viburnum leaf beetles have decimated the viburnums that had been growing around the perimeter of the Gateway Garden. Doug is also considering the addition of mass plantings of native grasses. Key concepts in Doug’s gardening handbook are drama, attention to detail, and a comprehensive plan. Stay tuned as the Gateway Garden and other spaces here begin to transform under Doug’s expert guidance. Doug comes to us from the Toledo Botanical Gardens and Toledo Metroparks, where he was the horticulture director. Doug has a master’s degree form the prestigious Longwood grad program and was director of landscapes at Southern Illinois University and the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House.

Volunteer photographer Kim Scholl sent us several photos of our spaces she took earlier in July. Thank you, Kim!