I Wish I Was Mee

I have been too sickly to go out into the garden this week,

instead I traveled down the Amazon with Margaret Mee and her friend Rita.

I would have been terrified running the rapids in a dugout canoe,

if I had not been safely tucked in my bed while doing it.

Not only is she adventurous, she is also an artist.

Her botanical watercolors are famous for their beauty as well as accuracy.

Margaret Mee gets placed on my hero list with Marianne North and Beatrix Potter.

I was almost glad to be sick, so that I could float and forage through the jungles.

Almost..

FLOW

Inside a Book

It’s warm and dry inside a book.

I have a winter stash that I only allow myself to look at when the weather is bad.

It is raining again today. Hooray!

I finally get to enjoy the two books my friend Joyce gave me in June.

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They are Flora Forager books. Both by the brilliant Bridget Beth Collins.

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She does magic with flower and plant pieces.

Some of her art is mosaic pictures.

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Some are replicas of famous paintings.

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Many are mandalas made of natural materials.

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The seasonal journal has plenty of room

to write that poetry I have been putting off putting down.

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I plan to lose myself in these books on this dreary day.

Oh look. There I am now!

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FLOW

 

Ice Art

I spent the weekend at Winter Fest in Blowing Rock, North Carolina.

My favorite part was the ice sculpting.

The artists set up huge blocks of ice in the middle of the town park.

This was the finished product .

There were also frozen signs made for different businesses around town.

These pieces were lovely, but did not inspire me to become an Ice Artist.

I was too cold to stick around and watch the artists work.

I did return later for photos.

By then I was rather tired, but there was only this seat available.

So I just stood around with the bear.

Better to stand with a frozen bear, than sit with a frozen rear.

FROZEN FLOWER

Gates of Art

These four gates are on display in the North Carolina Arboretum

in Asheville, North Carolina.

It is one of my favorite places on Earth.

This post features only the gates by E. Vega.

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The first design includes a man fishing.

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The fish is golden.IMG_1980

The fisherman has great details.

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The second gate features a farmer with a plow being pulled by a his horse.

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The two of them are working very hard.

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The third gate has a tree with one golden apple.

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There is a serpent twisted around the trunk.

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Reminds me of a story.

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The fourth and final gate has many rings with a different creature in each.

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I loved each one.

If you go visit the Arboretum, do not miss these.

They are off to the right of the entrance building, around a courtyard area.

I could have easily missed them, if I weren’t such a wanderer.

The details are amazing.

This E. Vega is brilliant at capturing the details of living beings

and recreating them in metals.

These gates are heavenly!

FLOWER

 

Chihuly Chandeliers

I won’t be a spoiler by sharing all two thousand or so photos,

but I will share what I almost missed by not looking up.

I also almost did not return again after dark

because I thought they would look the same.

This would be display number 13 in the Conservatory.

Burnished Amber, Citron and Teal Chandeliers, 2017.

The supposedly unlucky number for the rest of us.

My daughter Rose’s lucky number and birth day.

Maybe having my head tilted back made me dizzy

or was I dazzled beyond normal consciousness?

Do not overlook (or under-look) number thirteen.

It’s a doozie!

FLOWER

Mere Mortals with Magic

I have been fortunate to spend the past few days in the midst of magic.

I was in the presence of the work of two creative minds in the same location

on the night of a full moon.

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I am amazed that both my head and heart did not explode from the beauty and joy.

I was on the grounds of Biltmore Estate in Asheville.

This is the castle created by George Vanderbilt.

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On display throughout the grounds and inside the palace

were the dazzling glass sculptures of Dale Chihuly.

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Their magical spirits created mind-boggling beauty.

I am so grateful when mortals are given a glimmer of higher power

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to share with the rest of us,

as Prometheus shared the flame

to enlighten and inspire

a mere mortal like me.

 

FLOWER

Get Your Ghetto On!

Why wait to get just the right garden accessory when a piece of trash will do the trick?

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Blown glass watering balls with broken stems on the tops of plant stakes to prevent impalement.

I feel sorry for folks who have HOA’s (Home Owner Associations) dictating what is allowed in their yard.

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Squiggly plant stake as a handrail beside the step. Nice and sturdy!  Not code though.

Out here in the middle of nowhere, we can slap up any implement in our yards.

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Plant support rings hung up for a trellis extension. Vines growing through hoops.  

I feel sorry for folks of suburbia, all stifled by rules of respectability and what-not.

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Chop sticks protect passers-by from the mean cactus.

I love my ghetto garden.  Anything goes.

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No dog? No problem. This dish is perfect to hold extra water for this thirsty vine.

Reuse and recycle.   Go Ghetto!  (No offense.)

Go with the FLOW

 

A Pond with a View

We are very fortunate to have a great source for koi and water plants

just a short drive away from us.

Gayle’s Koi in Catawba has been our choice for buying koi and water plants for years.

She has a huge pond full of gorgeous giants.

Butterfly Koi with flowing fins

It is on the side of a hill and seems almost like an infinity pond.

Look at this view!

My son and I went to get several small koi and some water plants last weekend.

water hyacinths
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Water plants are needed to help shade the water during the hot months here in the south.

My son picked out two colorful fish from one of her holding tanks,

while I wandered around enjoying her garden art and unusual plants.

If you are local, I will pass along her contact information.

Gayle is the best.

FLOWER

 

An Oasis at the Beach

One of the highlights of my recent trip to North Myrtle Beach

was a visit to Tropical Nursery on 25th Avenue South.

It was within walking distance of my beach-front condominium,

but felt as though I had left the American shore for the southern hemisphere.

The place had an interesting selection of tropical plants.

Unique pieces garden art were displayed throughout the nursery.

I especially loved the giant triangular canvas that shaded the potted plants.

What a treasure to find near the shore of South Carolina.

FLOWER