Photographic Safari

On Sunday afternoon Anne and I went on a photographic safari.  We traveled to the deepest darkest of jungles.  Well, at least the deepest jungle that we have here in Saint Louis.  Actually, we went to the Missouri Botanical Gardens and visited the Climatron.  It had rained all Saturday night and Sunday dawned dreary and gray.  We needed to get out of the house and generate some blog fodder.  So dueling cameras in hand we headed to the gardens.

Between the two of us we took about four-hundred pictures.  The Red Powder Puff (Calliandra) is the first picture with this post.  This ornamental shrub is indigenous to the tropical Americas.  Its blossoms are favorites of both hummingbirds and butterflies.  Today’s header features the Mosaic Plant (Fittonia).  This Peruvian ground cover (not to be confused with the Brazilian one by the same name) makes for some great tile work and a header.

The place was empty.  Even with half of the parking lot closed for renovation, the remaining lot was only half full.  We visited the Mediterranean House and then the Climatron.  Because it wasn’t as cold as the last time I went to the gardens, fogging lens weren’t the problem that they were before.  After touring these houses we ventured outside and toured the gardens proper.

It being January, all the flower beds have been turned, all the fountains are turned off and let’s face it folks, it is winter out there.  There was still stuff to see though.  There was a magnificent Osage orange tree.  Its knarly bark is truly a sight to behold, check it out.

Osage orange trees are a common sight in Missouri today although they were not a very widespread Missouri species originally.  Found primarily in a limited area centered on the Red River valley in southern Oklahoma and northern Texas, they were planted as living fences – or hedges – along the boundaries of farms, and have spread widely from these restricted, linear beginnings.

Anne found the Missouri State Champion Soapberry tree.  As champion, this is the largest know specimen of its species in the state.  We ambled through the Traditional English Garden.  Think boxwood, lots of boxwood.   We skirted the Home, Chinese and Japanese gardens.  We did the English Woodlands Garden, not to be confused with the traditional garden.  I did the Herb Garden and then snapped the following picture of the back of Henry Shaw’s country home, circa 1844.  About this time, I got cold and we headed home.

4 thoughts on “Photographic Safari

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