Dating from the late 1800s, the Carlos Thays Botanicall Garden is a beautiful setting for the plants, trees, sculptures and buildings that make up the 17 acre urban oasis. It is located just off the Plaza italia.
The Montreal Botanical Gardens is one of the finest, if not the finest, botanical gardens in North America. It has a large number of specialty gardens, such as a Chinese Gardens (covered in a separate posting), as well as numerous thematic gardens – including one dedicated to poisonous plants!
Overall the gardens are amazingly beautiful, and well kept.
Audubon Park is located just south of downtown Columbus in a reclaimed ‘brown field’, aka – old industrial areas. The transformation to a nature preserve is amazing.
We were there on a Saturday morning for a ‘Beginning Birding Hike’. Our guide Erika was knowledgeable and enthusiastic.
We started out with the easy ones in the feeders.
While ostensibly we were there to check out the birds, the flowers and plants were interesting as well.
Not to mention twin turtles.
The bees were busy…
Of course I was too busy taking photos to pay attention to what type of bird this was!
As always wandering off from the crowd, who came away with more knowledge about birds than I did.
The boardwalk across the wetlands provided more flower and plant photo ops.
The small, but passionate group was very focused.
And a blue heron.
Despite the heat it was a great way to spend a couple of hours, thanks to the parks and our guide Erika.
A beautiful Saturday afternoon was the perfect time to go for a walk around the neighborhood. Only in this case we chose to go to the ‘Detroit Shoreway’ neighborhood in Cleveland for our walk.
Why – because this neighborhood, and many others in Cleveland, were participating in ‘GardenWalk Cleveland 2019’. We were fortunate enough to meet one of the founders of Cleveland’s, who said they go the idea from Buffalo, New York’s.
The Detroit Shoreway neighborhood is named so from Detroit Avenue, which is the original road from Cleveland to Detroit, and it is located along Lake Erie. Most of the homes in the neighborhood are over 100 years old, with many being exquisitely restored.
For the Garden Walk there were over 80 gardens to see, each with their own unique interpretation! Each had a sign indicating they were participating in the walk, and to guide us to which part of the yard was open (front, side, back)
A morning at the botanical gardens to check out the Chihuly Exhibit (in a different posting) allowed us to see the gardens in full bloom, along with active butterflies.
Just south of downtown Houston is Hermann Park, and the McGovern Centennial Gardens. It is a small, well thought out space with flowers, plants and statues.
The statues featured great Latin American leaders, as well as (strangely) Scottish poet Robert Burns!
With Avery Island’s location in southern Louisiana the main agricultural business is sugar cane.
With the year round warm, wet weather it is the perfect climate for nature to grow. In the late 1800s the son of the founder of Tabasco sauce, Edward Avery McIlhenny, created the botanical gardens known as Jungle Gardens.
The gardens cover 170 acres of Avery Island.
There isn’t a large number of different plants, flowers and trees, but the gardens are well laid out, and immaculately kept up.
As with most of Louisiana, water is always nearby.
Including this nice pond, with a warning sign to not feed the alligators (which seems like anyone would know that).
We did NOT feed this alligator.
The turtles were safely out of harms way.
A few buildings remain from the early days of Tabasco pepper growing.
This drive is appropriately named Wisteria Lane, as you make your way under the Wisteria arch.
The highlight however is Bird City. In 1895 Edward raised eight egrets in captivity, releasing them in the fall for their migration. The next year they returned with more egrets.
Ever since then thousands of egrets return to Avery Island in the spring and reside there until late summer.
When we arrived for the Tabasco tour we were one of the few who opted to purchase combination tickets for the factory tour and the gardens. It was money well spent!