Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Florida Botanical Gardens Revisited

Today is a good day! After being off blogging for the last week, except for a quick post on Monday, I can once again spend a lovely morning posting and visiting. Funny how you can come to miss spending time with friends you've never met face-to-face, but enjoy so much. Working an average of sixteen hours a day for the last week, I found myself wondering who was posting what and what was I missing?

Outdoor Wednesday is a perfect day to reemerge from the darkness and into the light. On Sunday I was so over looking at my computer and coming out of the studio only for meals and other essentials that I just grabbed my camera and headed over to the Florida Botanical Gardens. I needed to walk, to move, to breathe in some fresh air! I only had an hour or so to spare, so the gardens was the perfect place to unwind and refocus.

Since everyone seemed to enjoy last week's post of some of the more unusual flowers we can grow here, I thought I would share a few more of what you can find at one of my favorite places to visit. For the most part, it's just too hot to enjoy the beach, so the shade at the gardens beckons. This doesn't mean it wasn't hot, I came home dripping wet, it just means the sun wasn't beating down on me.
I left my house frazzled and returned rejuvenated!

Pink Powder Puff Calliandra emarginata

Seven Golden Candlesticks cassia alata
reclassified as senna alata
Thanks Florida Sue for naming this plant!

Glory Bower Vine Pandora jasminoides

Princess Flower Bush Tibouchina urvilleana

White Water Lily Nymphaea odorata

Water Lily Nymphaea Dao Fah

Calico Flower Vine Aristolochia elegans

The last unusual flower, the Calico, is so stunning. The first photo comes from, so that you could see the leaves of the vine it grows on. I came across one flower on a huge vine, but it was so intertwined in the weeds on the ground that I couldn't get a shot with the flower and the leaves together without destroying it's natural beauty. I did flip it over gently, so you could see the "Dutchman's Pipe" shape underneath. To truly appreciate this blossom, you should know that it is larger than my face. The Calico got it's name because the purplish pattern is reminiscent of calico fabric. This unusual vine is native to Brazil, but will grow here in Zones 8–10. Because it is an important larval food source, this unusual vine is planted in our Butterfly Garden. reports that it has been assigned a new name Aristolochia littoralis and is classified as a Category II invasive, so if you're thinking about adding this to your yard, I would suggest growing it in a large hanging pot.

So there you have it, more beautiful flowers to enjoy on this wonderful day. There is one thing I know for sure, if you visit Susan over at A Southern Daydreamer, you'll find links to even more outdoor wonders from all those who are sharing their beautiful world with us.

21 Thoughtful Comments:

Bonnie said...

What some neat and interesting plants. Many I have never seen before. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

There is something so beautiful about a water lily. The are so delicate. Beautiful post as always! Have a great day.

Maya said...

The flowers are just absolutely beautiful..., and beauty does relax!

Regina said...

Hi Rhonda. These are beautiful blooms. Great shots and post.

Unknown said...

Beautiful exotic plants. Loved them!

RobinfromCA said...

Beautiful flowers and so interesting! I'm glad you got time to relax and venture out. Sad that the heat prevented beach time but flowers are always a happy alternative!

Happy Outdoor Wednesday!

Magdalena said...

The pictures are beautiful. I have tried a few water lilies but have not been successful yet up here in our zone 6 climate. I'm not giving up, especially after seeing your gorgeous pics

Jen Beaudet Z said...

these are some amazing flowers! So unusual! Thanks for sharing them

Maya said...

Thanks so much..., for sharing your take on the starfish!!! And for the link..., there is nothing I can do about it. I published that post then deleted it, then published it new, and the old (deleted one) stays with blogger and shows up, no idea why..., and it also shows up on the LinkWithin Widget. Once published that's it it seems.

Love Bears All Things said...

Nothing I like better than a visit to the Botanical Garden as you know from the photos on my blog. But, it is so hot and humid right now that it will be a while before I go back, probably to see the Scarecrow exhibit.
I love the unusual plants you shared here.
Mama Bear

Mary Bergfeld said...

What amazing photos. You given us beautiful pictures of unusual plants. Thanks.

Journey said...

Unusual plants - some I've never seen before. Stunning photos!

Kathleen said...

Amazing pics..such beau flowers!

Rhonda said...

These blooms are just gorgeous.

Thanks for the sweet story about your grandfather and the peacoocks.

Anonymous said...

FYI - something BIG is happening at Sunshinemeg tomorrow!

Sierra said...

Aww, thanks for posting more flowers, I always enjoy your bright flowers that are full of joy. Glad you are back!

Light and Voices said...

Thanks for the cyber tour of the Florida Botanical Gardens. My favorite shot is of the white water lily and its shadow.

CrazyCris said...

wow those are gorgeous flowers! one of the advantages of living in a sub-tropical environment like southern Florida has got to be the flora!!!

I'm glad you're deadline's over and you have time to hang in cyberspace once again! If it gets to hot in Florida for you, come cool off in Alicante over the next week... I promise highly "refreshing" posts! ;o)

Rose Marie Raccioppi said...

A cloudy, rain drenched morning in New York, so beautifully enlivened by the bloom and majesty of Florida's flowers. Somewhat like your statement, "... you've never met face-to-face, but enjoy so much." Thank you for all the beauty you capture and reflect.

Anonymous said...

More beautiful flowers Rhonda! I know what you mean about the sweaty dripping part, but aren't we lucky to have such amazing flowers here in Florida? The second one I recognize as Cassia, because I have a small tree in my garden. You have been working hard, and I am glad that you took some time for yourself. Thank you for your wonderful comments. I would just love to meet you.


Kat said...

Beautiful plants. Flowering vines are some of my favorite and I really love these. I doubt any are drought tolerant are they? In a normal year, we are still fairly dry in the summer. Of course this year is so NOT normal that nothing is growing. Thanks for sharing these, the Calico in particular is stunning. Kathy

I love the beach and everything that goes with it! I love the waves lapping at my feet. I love the feel of the sand between my toes. I love the roar of the Pacific and the gentle waves of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. Let's talk about beaches around the world, bonfires, building sandcastles, swaying palm trees, flamingos, clambakes, sunrises and sunsets. If it's tropical, it fits this blog!


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