In Alaska at the winter solstice, the sun rises at 10:30 am and sets at 3:30 pm – only 5 hours of light per day.
The reverse is true at the summer solstice. The sun rises at 4:30 am and sets at 11:30pm – only 5 hours of darkness. So we are here not far off the summer solstice and are the beneficiaries of what happens in nature in a stable, temperate climate with so much sun – the flowers are GORGEOUS. There is a fabulous mix of wildflowers and those that people have planted, many that I have never seen before, even in all my years as a florist and backyard gardener.
We spent the morning of our first full day here at the Alaska Botanical Gardens. Fortunately both the little ones LOVE flowers, and the oldest is a budding photographer. She has her own point and shoot camera and took loads of pictures of the flowers (as did Gawgs!) and tried her best to catch one of a bee, with less than stellar results. But she kept trying. The bees loved the foxgloves, but they just wouldn’t stay still!
I could easily go nuts showing you flower after flower, but I pared it down to just a few favorites.
The people who designed the gardens did an amazing job of using the natural landscape as a base for building them. They used lots of natural elements, like birch branches woven into borders and as supports for climbing plants, and lined the walkways with low-growing flowers then the taller ones behind them with the pine, fir and alder trees as the backdrops. It was really impressive.
And then I NEED to show you our little friend. I have been trying to take a photo of a dragonfly for the longest time, but I can never catch one sitting still long enough to get anything but a blur. This little guy landed on Mr. Tattered’s pants as he sat on a bench and just stayed there. I would have preferred a more attractive background, but you “take what you get and don’t throw a fit” (as Bea would say!)
We had a great time “smelling the flowers.” Hope you’re taking time to do the same – literally AND figuratively!