Dahlias at Volunteer Park in Seattle

The Dahlia Garden at Volunteer Park is in full bloom.  I stopped by on a gray day after early morning rain showers.  What a profusion of colors and blossoms!

Dahlia at Volunteer Park

Yellow dahlia

Perfect dahlias in all stages of bloom

Close-up of dahlia

Dahlia, a ball of petals

Dahlia balanced on its stem

The gardens are inspiration for Seattle photographers!

The Japanese Garden in Seattle

I saw signs of autumn this week at the Japanese Garden in Seattle.  The edges of some maple leaves had already turned orange.  And the spiders were busy building webs.  I plan to return in October when the fall foliage should be at its peak.

The Japanese Garden is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.  It’s a lovely oasis in the city and well worth a visit.

Bridge over the ponds in the Japanese Garden

The leaves were starting to turn in the garden.

I love the pattern of leaves with their shadows.

Lily pads

Reflections in the ponds at the Japanese Garden

Feeding frenzy: koi vs. thieving duck

Colorful koi at the Japanese Garden

Ginkgo leaves

Green pine cone, Japanese Garden

I love how the spider web reflects the colors of the leaves.

One of several Japanese lanterns on the grounds of the Japanese Garden

Pioneer Square, a gathering spot

There’s an interesting art installation in Pioneer Square right now, suspended over the scene.  The most striking parts of this art are two white objects that look like huge lace handkerchiefs, like a giant’s laundry hung up to dry.  I liked the interplay of the cutouts and the dappled leaves nearby.

Draped art resembles a lace handkerchief

Lacey cutouts and dappled leaves

Art suspended over Pioneer Square

A block away is a wonderful mural painted on the side of a vacant building.  It features graffiti, Picasso, and images from Guernica.  It seems to be anticipating the Picasso exhibit opening at the Seattle Art Museum in October.

Mural at 213 S Main St near Pioneer Square

Graffiti + Picasso + Guernica mural

Rose after rain shower

Woodland Park Rose Garden

June is the month of roses, so I made a special effort to visit the Woodland Park Rose Garden between rain showers.  I thought if I waited for a sunny day, I might miss the entire rose season.  Seattle has set a new weather record.  We have never before gone this far into the year without hitting 75 degrees.  Looks like we won’t be hitting that mark any time soon!

The roses covered in raindrops were lovely.

Intrigue Floribunda

About Face

Heirloom Hybrid Tea Rose

Rose bud amidst the allium

French Perfume Hybrid Tea Rose

Lily pond at the Woodland Park Rose Garden

Duck napping in the lily pond

Lily pads and blooms

Fuchsia display at the Volunteer Park Conservatory

Purple and hot pink fuchsia

It’s been quite rainy lately, so I decided that Seattle’s Volunteer Park Conservatory would make a good, rain-protected environment for testing the repairs to my Canon camera and lens.  I’m pleased to report that my camera is working like new!

This month the Conservatory’s special displays featured fuchsias.  But I was equally inspired by the plants in the permanent displays.  There’s always something new in bloom.

Exotic bloom, Volunteer Park Conservatory

Leaf edge abstraction

One of the items on my “To-Do List” this year is to visit Seattle’s Washington Park Arboretum when the azaleas are in bloom.  In a more normal year, this might be a Mother’s Day outing.  But this year I suspect that the azaleas will bloom early.  I have already been seeing some rhododendrons in bloom in sunny spots around the city.

I made a visit to the Arboretum this week to see what was blooming.  It’s still too early for much color on Azalea Way, but I did see one bush in bloom.

Azalea bud on a mossy bush

Azalea flower, an early bloom

Fat robin at the Arboretum

Bench and blooming forsythia, Washington Park Arboretum

Mossy limbs frame the budding trees

Seattle’s Pike Place Market is open year-round, but it is an especially vibrant place on a clear, sunny day in February.  I was pleased to see buckets filled with colorful tulips. . . the promise of spring in a pail.

First tulips, Pike Place Market

A rainbow of colorful tulips at the flower stalls

Tulips, Pike Place Market

Vendor prepares a tulip bouquet

More splashes of color: carrots

Honey pots, like a mosaic of stained glass, glow in the Seattle sunshine

Young shopper at the Pike Place Market