Friday, February 11, 2011

In the Garden...

Instead of trekking out to Bisbee, we set our sights closer. Our alternate location was the Tucson Botanical Gardens.

I was pleasantly surprised to see the butterfly exhibit still up. I enjoyed going into the steamy greenhouse, filled with flittering winged creatures. I love the brightly colored segmented wings, shimmering with iridescent powder.

Above is a shot of a ragged butterfly. Such a beautiful thing, even in a state of graceful decay. This morpho butterfly had seen better days. Its intense blue, was faded and the wings were torn along the edges.

Situated in the middle of the gardens is a miniature town with an electric train. I love the tiny scale and how it looks so realistic. It's almost like looking at an actual town from above and at a distance!

Many of the cacti and succulents were badly damaged from the freeze. I was glad to see that not everything was a total loss. It would have been sad if more had suffered. Hopefully everything will come back as things warm up.

One of the things that I love about the Botanical Gardens (and gardens in general) is that there is so much to see on every level. On a larger scale, there is the overall layout of the property and the shape of the gardens themselves. But there is also a secret world on the tiniest of scales that is often times overlooked, where the smallest of seed pods can look monumental when observed.

The (fictitious) character of a mad scientist specializing in poisonous, carnivorous, and plants with a bad reputation was invented specifically for the Wicked Plants exhibit based on the book, Wicked Plants: The Weed That Killed Lincoln's Mother and Other Botanical Atrocities by Amy Stewart. Become a fan of the doctor on Facebook and find out all about his wicked plants by CLICKING HERE.

Oddly enough, at the entrance to the Children's Garden, there are plants from the Wicked Plants exhibit, like stinging nettle, puncture vine, and devil's claw (shown above).

We had fun posing with the wooden butterfly wings in the Children's Garden. I think one of our projects while I'm here will be to create our own set of wings for the backyard.

Jeannette as a butterfly.

Holly as a butterfly.

As we left the gardens, we passed a tiled bench. On it was quote by Bernice Porter, the original owner of the Botanical Gardens before it was the Botanical Gardens. It read, "Put together, their meanings grow into something greater than both..." It made me think of our workshop and how each of the different perspectives shared creates something bigger and better and greater than the parts and the pieces.


kate mckinnon said...

utterly lovely post.

chocoholic said...

Wonderful photos Andrew. I especially love the one of the devil's claw with the shadows on the ground. That makes me want to go play with Photoshop again!!

nicol said...
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Andrew Thornton said...

I love the devil's claw also. I'm thinking of going back again and doing some sketches and some watercolors. We'll see!

Jennifer said...

the picture of the butterfly is stunning.