Floriade Nightfest

Floriade Nightfest

 Nightfest 1In ancient times much of the world paused in their work to celebrate flowers.  Weary of winter and with food supplies running low the Roman Goddess Flora was celebrated. In the spring a Maypole was erected, ribbons streamed down and the dancing began.  Young women wore crowns of flowers in their hair. The beauty of life, flowers and fertility was thoroughly celebrated with the hope of a great harvest in the Fall.  The celebration lasted several days with games, performances, feasting and drinking.  Australia’s Floriade does just that!  By day the festivities are lit by the sun and by night lights multiply the magic of the celebration.

She plays the violin while hula hooping and adds fire!

She plays the violin while hula hooping and adds fire!

Floriade’s Nightfest is a party among the flowers with waves of lights falling on the beds of tulips & pansies. Changing colors flood the multi-colored beds emphasizing the shapes of the flowers. Here there were performance venues surrounded by lit colored balls illuminating street performers. There is a light show of two illuminated women twirling LED lit wands which changed patterns of flowers, flags, words  A couple played their violins with fire lit bows.

Floral Masterpiece walks among us.

Floral Masterpiece walks among us.

There were walking art floral masterpieces. Mimes walked about engaging the crowd, and a simply amazing one man band played his kazoo, symbol, whistles and more.  People were happy and engaged, eating ice creams, and  queuing up for a ride on the lighted ferris wheel.

Floating flowers

Floating flowers

For me the best part was a forest walk of inflated flowers in all shapes of blooms.  The flowers changed colors in time with music being pumped out through the speakers.

Waves of color in time with the beat

Waves of color in time with the beat

People were photographing every scene, taking videos, posing with each other with happy smiles and wide eyes.  The mood was festive and the night was perfect for a true celebration of spring.

Enchanted eyes look upward

Enchanted eyes look upward

Flowers represent the promise of food, the symbol of life.  What began as a celebration of a Roman Goddess has spread across continents inviting all to revel in the joy of spring and flowers.Nightfest 7

Floriade, a Celebration of Spring!

Floriade, a Celebration of Spring!

Floriade 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 andContinue Reading

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