Other than the scary plane flight back home (oh my!), my time in Florida could not have been better. The company of dear friends, along with delicious food and drink, was more than enough to make me happy. The addition of warmer temperatures, even if accompanied by rain and overcast skies, and a visit to the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, made for a wonderful weekend.
“Nested in 14 acres and amongst 12 buildings, the gardens are an open-air and under-glass museum of thousands of colorful and exotics plants. The mission of the gardens is to provide an oasis of inspiration and tranquility, while furthering the understanding and appreciation of plants, especially epiphytes (a plant that derives its moisture and nutrients from the air and rain and usually grows on another plant). Selby Gardens is known for its living collection of more than 6,000 orchids, but it is also an established authority on other epiphytes including bromeliads, gesneriads, and other plants”.
I’m not sure when I’ve been to a place where I’ve known so little and learned so much! My ability with the camera did not do justice to the glory of these plants (tripods were not allowed iin the orchid house), but the photos do reveal their vibrant colors and uniqueness.
This Fig Tree had the most incredible root system.
Despite the focus on plant life, the Gardens are home to wildlife as well.
I was so focused on capturing the color of this plant that I didn’t realize until later that I beheaded this little critter.
The Rainforest Masks of Costa Rica were on display, in the 10th annual exhibition of the people of Boruca. The masks are carved from native woods and are intricately painted in vibrant acrylic pigments. Incredible!
The historic Selby estate contains gardens devoted to Bamboo and Banyans, Cactus and Succulents, Bonsai, Hibiscus, Tropical Fruit, Fern, Native Florida Plants, Mangroves, Tropical Hardwoods, as well as Orchids.
Even the gate that surrounds the property is a work of art.
Multiple visits would be needed to fully appreciate the gardens, a must see for plant / flower lovers.