BOSTON (CBS) – One way to tell that spring has finally arrived is with the much-anticipated reopening of the renovated Japanese garden at the Museum of Fine Arts.

Tenshin-en, or “Garden of the Heart of Heaven,” first opened in 1988. It has been closed for the past 1 ½ years while it was completely renovated.

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The face lift included paving, irrigation, draining, and lighting systems improvements, according to the MFA website.

“The garden’s granite plank terrace was reset; and truckloads of new granite gravel were brought from North Carolina and distributed throughout,” notes the site.

A kabukimon-style entrance gate that opens on a small, rich sloping montage of natural art is one example of the renovations made at the site.

“All of the interior of the garden has been pruned, brought back to beautiful life and it’s just opening today,” Julie Moir Messervy told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens on Friday.

Flower designers and garden clubs from around New England arrived Friday morning to kick off the 39th annual Art in Bloom celebration. Attendees created art-inspired floral arrangements in the galleries before the museum opens.

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A reopening ceremony was held at 11:30 a.m.

Messervy, one of the original designers of the garden, says she is excited to see the warm side of Mother Nature after the harsh winter we had.

“We all are dying to get our hands dirty in the garden,” she said.

“It’s still a little frozen out there.”

The MFA says the garden is home to more than 70 species of plants—1,750 specimens in all.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens reports:

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