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Winter Wonderland

Submitted by on November 23, 2012 – 9:28 pmNo Comment

There’s something about the holidays that inspires botanists to add miniature trains to their gardens.

Here are a few of the places to see this seasonal collaboration:

**More New York City landmarks and trains than ever before are promised at the Holiday Train Show in the New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, New York (map), open November 17, 2012, through January 13, 2013.

Large-scale model trains chug a quarter of a mile through a landscape including more than 140 scaled iconic buildings and structures under thousands of twinkling lights.

**Wonderland Express runs between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. daily between November 23, 2012, and January 6, 2013, at the Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, Illinois (map). Exceptions are 3 p.m. closures November 29 and December 24; closed all day December 25, 2012).

Inside the Garden’s Regenstein Center, watch miniature trains wind through a village of tiny Chicago landmarks created from natural materials. At Krehbiel Gallery in the Garden, visit an English country train platform and view a video on the creation of Wonderland Express. Tour decorated trees in the Garden’s Joutras Gallery and take in a gingerbread village display. A display of 750,000 lights trim the experience from the entrance to the magical courtyards awaiting your arrival.

**Season’s Greenings is the title for the annual exhibit of plants ‘n’ trains at the United States Botanic Garden Conservatory, 100 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington, D.C. (map). It’s on display November 22, 2012, through January 1, 2013.

The Conservatory is adorned with wreaths, garlands and other living ornaments, and filled with model trains, buildings made from plant materials and a vast collection of poinsettias to celebrate the wonder of the winter holiday season.

The famous Garden Railway in the East Gallery features model trains running through an imaginative Enchanted Forest, with fanciful fairy dwellings along the rail line, all created with plant materials. Enjoy blooming plants throughout the Conservatory and a living history of poinsettias. The West Gallery houses one of the largest indoor decorated trees in Washington, D.C., and the Garden Court is home to a display of model landmark buildings from our Nation’s capital, all made from plant materials.

**Conservatory Crossing takes place in the Garfield Park Conservatory, 2505 Conservatory Drive, Indianapolis, Indiana (map), November 23 through December 31, 2012.

The 1914 Conservatory is decked out in its holiday best with a brilliant display of poinsettias and model trains running through a train village and under thousands of twinkling lights. This display is done in partnership with The Indiana Rail Road Company. It’s open extended hours until 8 p.m. on December 14, 15, 20, 21, 22, 2012. Special show admission is $3 per person or $8 per family (with 2 adult max).

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