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Property: Michigan 4H Children’s Garden MSU Campus — East Lansing

Nearly hidden on a narrow strip of land between a parking lot and an active railroad track, these gardens provide a pleasant retreat, particularly at this time of year, with colorful blooms and ripening produce. The Imagination Arbor near the main entrance leads to the ABC Garden – with plants from alyssum to zinnias – in the shadow of the outdoor Garden Amphitheater. From there, paths wander through various themed patches, such as the Pizza Garden with peppers and garlic or the Perfume Garden with fragrant lavender and mint.

Further along, a multi-colored path in the Rainbow Garden turns around a Small World globe and divides beds that feature African, Hispanic and Asian American themes as well as Pioneer and North American sections. Each division features culturally representative plants, from okra, tomatillos and pak choi to pumpkins and squash.

The tree house, Monet Bridge and Alice in Wonderland Maze attract off-season visitors, even when the plants are not at their prime. Dance chimes, which are likely intended for children, are equally irresistible for the young at heart. Guests are encouraged to smell and touch the plants and the technologically savvy will find QR codes leading to additional information about the garden´s features.

“Eye candy of the Week” is our weekly look at some of the nicer properties in Lansing. It rotates each with Eyesore of the Week. If you have a suggestion, please e-mail eye@lansingcitypulse.com or call Andy Balaskovitz at 999-5064.

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