Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

August 1, 2012

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from homeHow many days does it take you to unwind when you take a break?

Two, three, more? This trip it was five before I felt fully relaxed and it was on this day we chose to visit Albuquerque Botanical Gardens.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

I was curious to see how a garden could grow in the middle of a New Mexican city that’s surrounded by brown and red scrubby dirt, dotted with occasional Juniper bushes and river beds run dry.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

I couldn’t have been more surprised and delighted. In temperatures up in the high thirties, the gardens were green, colourful, interesting and buzzing with wildlife, which can only be due to an amazing (hidden) irrigation system and dedicated staff, many of whom were volunteers.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

There were several themes around the trail from Mediterranean to north African but the two that had me completely enthralled were the pollination and Japanese gardens.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

Initially I was reminded of home in the pollination garden, recognising several of the flowers – Rudbeckia, Buddleia, Lilium to name a few and was barely conscious of any insect life. After a short while of quietly peeking into the flower beds, it became clear there was a different hidden world, teeming with life – hummingbirds, butterflies, crickets and beetles, wasps, bees, lizards and dragonflies, all were quietly going about their business while the visitors passed them by.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

The Japanese garden was entirely different, a welcome oasis in the searing heat.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

Here was tranquility, a garden designed as one should be with twists and turns, hidden paths and trails leading to exciting places – stepping-stones in shallow rivers, waterfalls that enticed you to step behind them. I loved the way the occasional splashes of red weren’t provided by wooden bridges and pergolas, but in the subtle planting schemes.

Flora & Fauna 5,000 miles from home

Dare I say this was my first trip to a Botanical Garden and if anyone’s thinking of visiting this one in Albuquerque I’d highly recommend it. A trip to the Botanical Gardens in Dublin is now top of my priority list when we return home and I’m curious to see how it differs given our very different climatic conditions.


  • Reply Móna Wise August 1, 2012 at 6:57 pm

    Oh Dee – you will love the Dublin botanical gardens …. but may not have the lovely sunshine when you visit. Lovely photos – felt warm all over looking at them x

    • Reply greensideupveg August 2, 2012 at 5:35 am

      I’m so looking forward to seeing them Mona, whatever the weather. Will try and get there soon now I’ve had a taster!

  • Reply Ena August 1, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    OMG I hate you (only joking Dee) I am oh so envious What an experience and such fab photos to prove you really did visit this amazing botanical gardens which I’ve been keeping my eye on for yrs o’er the net! [you’ve probably heard me scream I bet]

    I am totally in shock to hear though that you’ve yet to visit the ‘bots’ I’ll be happy to escort you whenever you decide to visit. You will love it….

    • Reply greensideupveg August 2, 2012 at 5:34 am

      Ha thanks Ena & yes I really did. It was fabulous and so difficult to choose the pics to add to the blog. I also loved but didn’t mention the succulent house. There were containers dotted everywhere full of amazing plants. Very maddeningly my phone camera packed up and I lost almost all my pics. The ones above were taken by Mr G on his DSLR (thank goodness he was snapping away too!) I’d love to take you up on your offer of a Botanical Garden tour. I don’t know why I’ve never made it there!!

  • Reply Kelly August 6, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    Thanks for sharing these lovely photos! We are so happy you had a chance to visit our beautiful city. Our whole BioPark is really an incredible place to find tranquility, as you did. Please come back and see us again 🙂 Kelly

    • Reply greensideupveg August 6, 2012 at 6:47 pm

      It was wonderful Kelly. May sneak another visit in if I can as very well priced too 🙂

  • Reply Could the American Dream by Wrong? August 19, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    […] my Wisteria Lane life I had to visit a beautiful garden to reconnect, I’ve struggled to find the serenity I was looking for in my perfect home. […]

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