Floriade, a Celebration of Spring!

Floriade, a Celebration of Spring!

Floriade 1Floriade is a annual Spring celebration of flowers, held in Commonwealth Park, Canberra, the Australian Capital. The month long celebration has been held for 27 years from mid Sept. to mid October. Over 1 million flowers are planted in the park and when the show opens this incredibly diverse community streams in with friends and family to inhale the fresh scent of spring weather. There is a huge ferris wheel designed to give riders a view of the patterned plantings and also a grand view of the city center. Carnival rides, seminars, lectures, musical performances of choirs, dancers, jugglers, are all part of the offerings. Floriade 13Yet in spring, flowers are the big show. Tulips, pansies, ranunculus, daffodils, hyacinths, flowering cabbages, iris are just some of the blossoms used in the designs. Parents pose their children in front of the beautiful colors struggling to get them to hold still and look at the camera. Then for just a moment realize as they look through the lens they are truly seeing the most beautiful elements of life, their children and nature’s glorious blooms. Floriade 7The park was filled with people, walking, pointing at the flowers, admiring the combinations of colors, eating ice cream, and talking as they experienced a beautiful day.Floriade 9 Around lake Burley Griffin the deciduous trees are leafing out in bright green. An annual celebration of spring is a beautiful thing.Floriade 8

Chinese Friendship Garden

Chinese Friendship Garden

In September it is spring in Sydney Australia and when we walked into the 2.5 acre Chinese Friendship Garden for a moment I thought this will be the same as other Chinese gardens. There were the quite wonderful textured rocks and the bonsai collection in the entry but there was something more, the garden wasContinue Reading

Roma Street Parkland

It is said that great cities have great parks and as I travel I see this proved true again and again.  But I would add, great cities have citizens who realize the value of their parks and come to them to rest, relax, revive their spirits and reconnect to the important things in life.  HereContinue Reading

Brisbane Botanic Gardens:

Brisbane Botanic Gardens:

  Sept 12 and it’s spring in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.  The Azaleas are in bloom in the Japanese Garden.  The Water Dragons on the prowl since it is mating season.  They slip out of the shrubbery and look about then suddenly rise up on all four feet, puff up their head and jut out theirContinue Reading

Destination: The Oregon Garden

Destination: The Oregon Garden

Some ideas take a long time to grow and The Oregon Garden is just such an idea. The Oregon Association of Nurseries had long wanted (since 1940) a demonstration garden to highlight the incredible variety of plants grown in the area.  Since 1968, the citizens of Oregon have been leaders in protecting the climate, air,Continue Reading

Sunflowers in Song

Sunflowers in Song

A single row of sunflowers is a delight in my garden!  As the flowers fade and seeds form a flock of yellow canaries and some peach faced loved birds descended on the tasty seed heads. I heard them chatter, I heard their songs. They were everywhere in the garden. I looked out my window andContinue Reading

Stumpery Garden

Stumpery Garden

As a southwest gardener, wandering into a northwest woodland garden is an exciting experience. Here are the shade plants of azaleas, jack-in-the pulpit, mayflower, hostas and rhododendrons. There are great varieties of tree bark textures, conifer needles and dazzling shades of green.  Discovering  the Stumpery Garden in the Rhododendron Species Garden in Federal Way, WAContinue Reading

Farm fields of flowers

Farm fields of flowers

Driving through the Willamette Valley, near Silverton, Oregon I saw a field of poppies being raised for seed.  This wonderful agricultural area is known for fruit, wine, and more but I didn’t know there would be fields of flowers.What a crop! For me it was simply beautiful but for the farmer it was a business, aContinue Reading

Leach Garden, Portland, OR

Leach Garden, Portland, OR

Every garden holds a surprise though sometimes you have to really look for it because it is out of sight, down a path and across the water. This is exactly where I found this stone cottage. John & Lilla Leach lived the summers here in the early 1930’s while their larger home was being built. Continue Reading

Van Dusen Garden, BC

Van Dusen Garden, BC

The Alma Van Dusen perennial garden was in full bloom this July day. The bed is a large oval shape with a path meandering through it. The highlight is the delphiniums which easily grew 8’ high. An unobtrusive bamboo frame helped hold these huge stalks upright.  The flowers were in 3 shades of blue rangingContinue Reading