Garfield Park Conservatory opens all rooms

January 23, 2012

(Flickr/Damon Taylor)
The Desert Room is one of the last to re-open after storm damages. Here is it in 2010.

All the rooms at Chicago's Garfield Park Conservatory are now open. A hail storm last year caused extensive damage to the historic building.

The Desert House and Aroid House were opened Sunday in conjunction with an event celebrating the Chinese New Year. Polycarbonate sheets now line the roofs of those rooms for protection. 

But Conservatory officials say the greenhouse still requires work - including more glass replacement. Hail stones the size of golf balls shattered 60 percent of the glass of its fern room. Workers had to remove glass from the soil by hand and officials say cleanup has cost at least 2 million dollars.

Garfield Park is one of the nation's largest conservatories and houses several exotic and century-old plant species.