The Brooklyn Botanical Garden

The Brooklyn Botanical Garden

New York’s train/subway system makes it so easy to get around.  I took the No. 2 train to the stop at the Brooklyn Museum Station, which was just a few yards from the Eastern Parkway entrance to the Brooklyn Botanical Garden.  The garden was a green oasis of quiet on a November day, such a contrast to the busy city streets.  Some trees still held on to their colorful fall foliage, and I couldn’t help but tuck away a few fallen leaves to take back to the apartment and use as models for more watercolor sketches.  I swear I am like a squirrel driven to forage before winter!  (I had to make sure I removed my stash of leaves and acorns from the apartment before I left, or my niece would have wondered if a squirrel had come in through the windows while she was away.)

The well-ordered gardens and paths, conservatories, pools, and arbors provided restful vistas for the eyes.  Lots of photo opportunities here.

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Cut-leaf beech

Cut-leaf beech

London plane tree

London plane tree

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In the Steinhardt Conservatory

In the Steinhardt Conservatory

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From the special bonsai exhibit

From the special bonsai exhibit

“When I design each individual tree, I try to communicate the spirit of that tree and, hopefully, evoke the imagery of a special, natural environment.”
–Curator of the Bonsai Exhibit, Julian Velasco

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Watercolor sketch of scarlet oak and ginkgo leaves

Watercolor sketch of scarlet oak and ginkgo leaves

Watercolor sketch of front and back of fallen leaf

Watercolor sketch of front and back of fallen leaf

Watercolor sketch of oak leaves of NYC

Watercolor sketch of oak leaves of NYC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Laburnum arbor, Bayview Nursery

Laburnum arbor, Bayview Nursery

Spring is proceeding at breathless pace, and one of my favorite places to savor the fresh colors and blooms is Bayview Farm and Garden on Whidbey Island.  I mark my calendar each year so that I remember to make the trip there when the laburnum arbor is in full glory.  The cascading flowers of Golden Chain give the impression that you are sitting under a floral waterfall.  The double arbor alone makes Bayview Farm and Garden a worthy destination, but of course, the rest of the nursery is also full of visual treats.

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A garden Buddha

A garden Buddha

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Clematis

Clematis

Hollyhocks

Hollyhocks

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Fuchsias

Fuchsias

“Fuchsias are among my ninety-nine most favourite flowers. . . . I could go on for hours, and probably shall, one day, about their white petticoats and their crimson ruffs and the incredible grace with which they dispose themselves.”
— Beverley Nichols, Sunlight on the Lawn

Nature’s Cathedrals

October 2, 2011

Grape leaves

 “The out-of-doors has been to me more and more a great cathedral in which God would be continuously spoken to and heard from.”
     — George Washington Carver

Standing under the arch of this grape arbor, with the changing leaves glowing like stained glass, felt a bit like being in Nature’s cathedral.

“There is a way of beholding nature which is a form of prayer, a way of minding something with such clarity and aliveness that the rest of the world recedes.”
     — Diane Ackerman, One Hundred names for Love: A Stroke, a Marriage, and the Language of Healing

Arbor of golden chain at the Bayview Nursery

While we were on Whidbey Island, we stopped at the Bayview Nursery to see the laburnum in bloom.  They are stunningly displayed in two arbors.  To walk through the golden arches is enchanting.

Double arbors of golden chain, Bayview Nursery

Golden chain remind me of yellow wisteria

Blooms hang like pendulums

A curtain of golden chain

An enchanting spot

Doesn't this resemble an impressionist painting?

Looking back through the other way

Golden arches

Spectacular laburnum at the Bayview Nursery