Dreaming of a cooler time--Pacific Northwest, Part III

Monday, August 2, 2010

It's officially hot. Temperatures have been in the mid-90s or higher for days now, and the heat index has gotten as high as 105. Both me and my poor plants feel like we're melting, so I figured now was as good a time as any to put up those final photos from my spring trip to the Pacific Northwest.

After we left Seattle, we were destined for Victoria, BC. We drove to Post Angeles and then took the ferry across the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

The weather was pretty amazing while we were in Victoria, BC -- not too hot and not too cold. We poked around the town area for a day or two, and then headed to our ultimate destination -- the world-famous Butchart Gardens. The place was pretty surreal -- kind of like Walt Disney World for gardeners.

Here's the shot that everyone takes when they visit Butchart -- the view from the staircase at the top of the sunken garden. There's a really cool story behind this garden.

Sunken garden at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC

It was a little overcast during part of the day, but the place was still non-stop, in-your-face texture and color.

Amazing orange tulips at Butchart Gardens

Yellow and green tulips at Butchart Gardens

See what I mean? Those tulips were insane! I swear that I didn't Photoshop these shots to enhance the color. And speaking of tulips, I couldn't believe how well our shirts matched the tulips in this shot. Crazy, eh?

Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC

It seemed like everything was bigger and better at Butchart. Get a load of this arborvitae hedge -- it has to be one of the hugest hedges I've ever seen. Jason is just barely visible at the base of the hedge, even though he's over 6 feet tall. If you're trying to create privacy in your yard, this is definitely the way to do it!

Huge arborvitae hedge at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC

On a smaller scale, I thought this was a clever and inexpensive way to create a visual barrier between a path and a lawn area. I guess if you have close to a million visitors each year, it's important to keep them off of the lawn.

Split bamboo edging at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC

And I know this shot doesn't look like much, but I had to share it. Those little stumps in the right side of the frame are bananas! Yes! Bananas in Canada! My guess is that they have to cut them to the ground each fall and protect them with straw, but they might be left to fend on their own. I'm guessing they're Musa basjoo.

Bananas in Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC

Well, that's about it for Butchart. I guess now it's time for me to brave the heat and turn over a new leaf, pulling out the melted plants in my yard. Ugh. Wish me luck!

Sunken garden at Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC


Kimberly said...

GREAT time to think of a cooler time and place! Your photos are beautiful. That arbovitae hedge is monstrous and amazing! The hedge and tree in the background dwarf your husband! WOW! Beautiful!

Jen said...

Wow, great photos! And you're right, that is a great story on this garden - I was especially pleased to see that they allow dogs! :)

It really is miserably hot right now. Errands are not being run because I can't stand the leave the office for lunch!

(Your cannas are enviably beautiful - ours look raggedy thanks to whatever's feasting on them.)

kim taylor - - - the sassy crafter said...

Well, the cannas don't look quite as good as they did. I found a huge canna roller chowing down on one of them. Needless to say, he won't be bothering my cannas any more.

cconz said...

What beautiful gardens!!! I better start planning my trip to Butchart Gardens. I just stumbled onto your lovely blog. I'm a plant nut too, so i'm always searching for others out there. I have never seen a hedge quite like that one. I'll be checking back.