There is something special about the Botanic Gardens in Adelaide. Or maybe it is all Botanic Gardens; I don't know. Being in the city centre probably makes it seem more of a sanctuary that if it were elsewhere and this is the essence of it perhaps. I arrive by car, and the moment I turn into Planetree Drive and cruise slowly down the one way lane, I am immediately transported to a world of big, old, shady trees and an era when things moved a little more slowly and gracefully than today's hurly burly existence.
For once I was early to one of our regular get togethers so I had time to wander, absorbing the peace, and of course taking some photos.This first photo could be almost anywhere remote and serene, with the shadows hiding the banks and the winter sun just catching the bend in the river..... but it is only a few paces from the centre of the city.
Did I get lost and end up in the elephant's enclosure at the zoo, with an eye peering at my lens? No, this is the cork tree.... They do a fantastic job with making micro-climates in these gardens because one moment I am looking at a grove of banana palms, complete with ripening bananas and around the next corner is a scene reminiscent of Monet's garden.....followed by plants suited to the the hot, dry Mediterranean gardens of the world.
It is all so beautiful, especially now we have had some rain and everything is looking so lush. The cycads are producing huge, weird looking fruits, many of the Australian shrubs and trees are flowering and there are some curious signs such as this one in the Mediterranean garden.... about what I have always thought was a very attractive native South Australian tree!
There is the magnificent and quite awe-inspiring Schlomberg Pavilion,below, which is made entirely of glass and is a Victorian example of total extravagance .... something sadly lacking in our economic rationalist world today.
This beautiful, old shade house, below, is made of brush from south eastern Australia and caught my breath as I walked towards it because I grew up with brush houses in my father's nursery but have not seen one for years. The thing about this one is that when the trees grow taller than the roof, they just grow right through.
But to see a photo of that and oh so many more photos you will have to click on the web album here.
You see, we did not go to the Botanic Gardens to see all this though. We went to see the Harvest Exhibition and the newly renovated hall in which it is held. But now you will have to wait until I have written about that to see what we saw. In the meantime, check out what Christie and Mary brought for us to have with coffee...the lemon slice was the best I have ever had..... and see us enjoying the sun after the recent rain.