Portland's Rose Society was founded in 1889, and the city's collection of hybrids, floribundas, and grandifloras has been growing ever since. In 1917 the International Rose Test Garden opened as a testing ground for new varieties of roses. Some of its first plantings were rose refugees from Europe during World War I. Today, over 10,000 plants and 550 species slope towards the city's downtown horizon.
The world's largest treehouse is a 97-foot-high chapel in Crossville, Tennessee. Minister Horace Burgess began building in 1993; today, he continues to make improvements and repairs with salvage wood and repurposed materials. It's a popular place for Sunday services, weddings, and, swinging on an 80-foot tall tree.
A flower's demise is a slow process—unless you're photographer Jon Shireman, in which case it happens with a quick pivot and a smash. He immerses his flowers to stiffen them, then flings them against a hard surface. The shattered remains are beautiful.
A dwarf form of Taiwan-native Cunninghamia lanceolata, ‘Little Leo’ forms a globe of soft, densely packed needles, looking like a pincushion. After 10 years, this rare conifer will still be less than 3 feet tall. Leaves are dark green during the growing season, taking on a bronzy, purplish cast in winter. Zones 7 to 9.