Tuesday, February 3, 2015

A midwinter summer's day

What to do when it's -20, there's a biting wind, and it's a day off school? Find somewhere warm to hang out, of course.

So Julia and I took a twenty-five minute trek into the cold wind, and ended up at the Muttart Conservatory for a lovely lunch and tour of the four botanical pavilions -- arid, temperate, show and tropical. It was a lovely way to spend a chilly afternoon, as you'll see by the pictures below...


Love the stained glass salamander in the arid pavilion...


and the cacti of all sizes...


and shapes...


The temperate zone had orchids galore...


and camellias and budding rhododendrons...


and a glimpse of daffs and tulips just coming up!


But the show pavilion, as usual, was the real stunner!
Celebrating the Lunar (Chinese) New Year, it was a treat for the senses,
bright and fragrant. Did you know the year of the goat starts February 19th?


The little gong made wonderful sounds...


Something smells really good here...


Gorgeous lanterns...


and prayers and wishes for a new year full of peace and prosperity...


A happy Buddha...


and even a terracotta soldier and horse!

The warmest place was the jungle... 
the humidity was a wonderful feeling in our dry Alberta winter!




We certainly didn't want to leave our garden retreat,
but the wind was behind us on the way home,
so the walk was almost pleasant.

It was a wonderful, summery way to spend a wintry afternoon.
I highly recommend it, or a visit to a greenhouse,
especially if you're feeling the winter blahs.

Thanks to Julia for all the lovely pictures shared here!

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