Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Open House at the Royal Botanical Gardens

Visited a couple of nurseries yesterday hoping to find something a little unusual that I could take cuttings of for my summer baskets. Nothing I fancied, so continued on to the Royal Botanical Gardens - they have a "Glass Under Glass" exhibit at the moment. It turns out they also have an exhibit of insects and spiders - mainly tailored to children, but certainly fun to check out the action. Can you spot the motorized tarantula?

This is one of the newest areas at the main RBG building. Lots of windows. So much brighter than other spaces within the older building.

Fortunately most of these dear little creatures came from other places - very few were North American.
Forgot what these two were supposed to be, but they were about the size of a compact car & spent their time clicking and sparring.

Visitors from the Southern United States - obviously hoping to escape and return to their nice warm home. Seem to have been well fed; they were about the size of a pen.

After I'd had my fill of bug watching, I was off to the greenhouse. These are jade plant flowers - this old grandfather of a plant - easily 5 feet x 4 feet and beautifully pruned was completely covered in blossoms.

I know dipladenia are common and I'm not even a pink sort of girl - but I just had to share this snap.

As far as botanical gardens go, the RBG's greenhouse is Lilliputian.
Small, but just full of blossoms at the moment. The scent of jasmine was everywhere - sadly my jasmine photos weren't up to the quality of their perfume. But here is something that was white and pretty:

Definitely no scent, but certainly fun.

I enjoyed this glass exhibit better than the sculptural exhibit - not sure why, maybe I just like glass better.

There were a collection of these little panels - 6" square. I think I could find a good spot in my garden for at least one of them.

I really liked these two swoopie pieces of glass. Even in person, they looked as if they were floating.

Just wouldn't be an sculptural garden exhibit without a fish...or maybe that's just a Canadian thing.

Starved for colour - just had to include this iron and blue glass thingie. Reminded me of my mum's old aluminium coasters.

A blooming Eucalyptus.

Wouldn't that be a fancy plant? However, it it indeed two - variegated leaves do not belong to the bougainvillea.

More glass upstairs with the Bird of Paradise (I'm guessing here).

If I had all the room in the world, I'd find a home for one of these lovely plants. (This one is the size of a good walk-in closet.) Maybe if I got rid of some of my furniture? I don't think my guests would mind standing, providing I made sure they had a drink, or two.

All in all, it was a good mini-escape from the dreary - but foolishly warm weather (+10C, 50F). If this keeps up, I'll have to go back to my photographs to look at snow.


Peggy said...

It is great to see such spectacular blooms and be able to walk around in a warm place at this time of year.The spiders I could give a miss to !

Teza said...

How ever did you know I was in the mood for a road-trip! What a wonderfully tropical world to lose yourself within! Not big on the insect shots (bumble bees have me scurrying out of the garden!) but some of the sculptures and statuary were very appealing. I want to add a mirror of sorts this year to refelct more sunlight into the back of the garden. These photos have given me some ideas...thanks for having us along!

Barbarapc said...

Peggy, I know what you mean about the spiders - children really seemed to like them. Am plotting my next greenhouse visit very soon.
Teza, Pleased to oblige. Mirrors are great in the garden - I like them when they're new and pristine and also, when they've become antiqued with the weather. Very pretty with candles in the evening too.

Vanillalotus said...

What a wonderful place! The glass sculptures are very beautiful, I like glass more than others.
Actually there is a variegated bougainvillea with those leaves and those blooms. If you search for it, it's called raspberry ice. I think what you photographed was raspberry ice but a portion of it has reverted back to it's normal green.

Barbarapc said...

V. I wish I had a greenhouse to grow my own Raspberry Ice! The variegation with the vibrant colour is perfect. Thanks for the information.

Mariaberg said...

Where is this botanical garden?
I have never seen that yellow flower then I read "glass exhibit " - I like it

I found you through Jan (ThanksFor2Day) and i saw the photo of you through a gardenclimbing thing ( I do not know the name).

easygardener said...

I do like sculpture in a garden setting. The spiders bugs looked interesting too - though not quite as beautiful. Lovely to be able to visit a tropical garden when it's cold outside.

Gail said...

I love botanical gardens, too. Ours is quite small, but chock full of lovelies. The glass sculptures are wonderful...especially the one that looks like a dress. Have you noticed that glass is quite popular right now? gail

Barbarapc said...

Mariaberg - the Royal Botanical Garden is in Burlington & Hamilton Ontario Canada.
E.G. - these lovely glass houses keep me sane in the winter. Between the green, the warm and the soil smell, it is absolutely soothing.
Gail - it does seem like a real trend. Just love the way they change with the light.

Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

Wow Barbara, this was quite a tour. Very interesting and colorful. My favorite is that glass garden ornament...the rectangular multi-colored one that sticks into the ground. Very artsy. Didn't like the bugs too much though. I enjoyed the gorgeous blooms.