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French Aloe…It Grows Everywhere

20 Oct

I had to know what that gorgeous orange flower was that grew like a flame on a stalk. French aloe. And it was blooming here in the dead of winter. French aloe adds spots of brilliant color to the landscape on a gray and cloudy day. Enjoy!

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A Winter Afternoon in the Garden

20 Oct

Upon my return to the hotel I learned that this afternoon would be the only good weather of my remaining time in Cape Town.  After Table Mountain my Number Two destination was the botanical garden. Visitor coordinator Colleen convinced me that this was my best plan for the afternoon. Next stop: Kirstenbosch.

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Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden is situated on the eastern side of a mountain in the city of Cape Town. The afternoon I spent there roaming the hillside pathways was an overcast, breezy day, but without rainfall. I enjoyed a late lunch at their restaurant before I began wandering. Here are some landscape shots that show the lay of the land. Even in winter there are many plants that are in blossom.

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I am from St. Louis, Missouri in the US. We have a fine botanical garden in my hometown as well. I was very proud to see the signpost at the entrance to the garden indicating the distance in kilometers to my home.

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It’s the Bloomin’ Gardens

20 Apr

It’s a little more than two months before I cross the Atlantic and the equator to begin my adventure on the  “Dark Continent”. Before my safari in Botswana, I will spend several days in Cape Town, South Africa. Cape Town, it so happens, is National Geographic’s #1 Travel Destination for 2014. There are so many things to do and see there, but one of the sites near the top of my list is Kirstenbosch Gardens underneath the dramatic Table Mountain. Though I will be there in their winter, I still plan to enjoy some time walking through the gardens and among the treetops on their brand new treetop elevated path which opens in May.

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(MOBOT. Even the parking lot is beautiful and full of tulips.)

We have beautiful gardens here in St. Louis, Missouri as well. On Saturday mornings (and Wednesdays too), you can enter the Missouri Botanical Garden for free between 7 and 9 A.M. That’s where I was yesterday…along with every other photographer in the city. Everyone there was carrying a camera, whether an iphone or the most complicated and elaborate equipment available. I took 200 photos with my DSLR. Below is a sampling. The tulips and daffodils were in full bloom.

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Japanese tea house. Unfortunately the large Japanese garden was not yet open for the season yesterday. Squeezing myself around the tea house though,I was able to photograph these flowering cherry trees.

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Ostrich ferns in the Chinese garden.

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Dale Chihuly’s glass sculpture decorates the entryway.

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