Saturday, February 16, 2019

Kew - orchids again .... and lots of purple!

Well it had to be done... back to see the orchids.  Once again, quite a crowd at the gate waiting to get in at 10.
 We've had several sunny and very mild (for the time of year) days but of course, today was cloudy!  Still fairly mild, though

 As I went through the cactus section (past the coffee carrying willow horse) I noticed this display (behind glass) with decorated pots.

 I was going to try and not duplicate all the pictures I took last week but some of them are impossible

I really like this turtle
 the central display (at water level)
and the centrepiece

of course had to take the sloth again

 I love the leaves they've used as the feathers
 I was disappointed with the photos I had last week of the arches..   lens was trying to mist up continually though..

 the large columns are always amazing
and in close up

I think this is my favourite of this year's arches, i love the airplants hanging like long fringes

 facing the other direction
 from the top of the steps with the "river" in the distance

 this is another favourite part too (those air plants again)  down by the "river"
 there were quite a few people already milling around and at this stage I still had my "standard" 18-55 mm lens on so no super close ups... I was torn again today, beween wanting close ups and shots that show the overall setting ...

I've been watching a repeat of a short tv series called Big Cats in the House, about a man who runs a cat sanctuary in Kent and raised an abandoned black jaguar at home..  it was fascinating.

I love the Kew version too.  Having seen how baby Maya walks, the pose is perfect!

changed lens at the door into the next area so a last look back at the colourful "river".

 now for close ups...

I now I shared some of these same plants last week but I also know that some I took weren't as focused as they could have been so was trying again
 these pale greeny-yellow ones are so pretty

the back of the display in the cool orchid room

as I was crouching down (trying to keep my coat off the wet floor) I took some side angles too.. like the shapes!

 these green and white ones seem to really confuse my camera when I take close ups so we just have a setting shot!

 and their surround behind them
there are so many different shapes and colours of orchids

 these deep burgundy ones are my favourite of all

I can never resist taking their photos
 the shine on them is incredible

 had the wrong lens on to get this all in, but in closeup it looks like an elephant's trunk..  not sure it's supposed to!

I liked it anyway
 up some stairs where there are orchids hanging... had to snatch this a bit, as there was a queue behind me

 another purple one I love

 stood and waited for a couple to move..

 these leaves are bending over touching the ceiling (glass roof) I hope they don't have to prune them!

 we're back down on the ground level now.

there is a one way system in operation so I couldn't double back round again
 so I made my way out
 pausing to snap some orchids planted under ferns

 the dolphin is at the bottom of a few steps and looks out through the window of the (for now exit only) way into the POW.

I went down to look at the orchids underneath him

 before returning to look at the butterflies.

too much light really so they are silhouetted

 but by zooming in I could get some detail

I presume they are hand made... wouldn't have fancied that job!

outside again now and by the Hive the crocus I saw last week have really benefited from the sunshine this week
 these were some of the only yellow ones I saw,

 the Broad Walk hellebores..

 the grass in the Palm House beds has been cut this week, neat stripes cut.  gulls still enjoying foraging
 I walked through the Palm House.

I could hear either the robins or the wrens that live in there, and something did fly across in front of me, but the photo I grabbed wasn't focuses, I think it must have been a wren as i couldn't see any red... it dashed off though so no chance for another attempt to take a picture

so I concentrated on shapes of leaves and trunks

love this rusty strut by the main door
 the bed at the main entrance..

 still snowdrops
 pale helleobores
 quite a lot of hellebores!

 the other side of the path my eye caught this bright pink - just the 3 flowers, right down at soil level... no labels, no idea.
followed the path towards the Temperate House

always love a lichen covered branch

 everywhere in the grass were splashes of purple and lilac

 crocus heaven!

time for ultra close ups
 and careful walking amongst the blooms so as not to damage them

my favourite!

 across the path was a big bed, largely cleared apart from bare stems of (something)  and a big trunk,

time for more close ups of patterns

(my cousin had been concentrating on patterns too I saw when i got home) 

ok back to crocus

loads of pollen fallen onto the petals

 a few more daffodils have come out this week too

 more patterns on this leaf
 Inside the Temperate House, I walked through from one end to the other...

started with rhododendrons

 this is starting to fade now, so no apologies for more pics..

 or of this,the buds lower down will be available for photography soon luckily

 tiny little mauve flowers

proved hard to photograph!

 bit fuzzy, sorry.

the big tubs of tiny narcissus are still going strong

 bright pink potfuls on the wide window ledges

 few tubs of orchids in here too

 and some early tulips - Negra, one of my favourite varieties (purple is one of my most favourite colours!)


more tulips in the next octagon along (the intersection areas)

 have forgotten what these lilies were called...

 they were striking though
and a change from the purple!

stems in a pot, cut back.  nice patterns again
 on the other side of the lake now,

 about the only reflection I saw today!

 the geese congregating by the island
 more carpets of crocus!

I would have loved to have lain down and taken some at ground level, but it was too muddy

 camera at ground level, soft focus effect wasn't really what I was going for, but it's quite a nice water-colour kind of look...

this one was a bit more what I was after, using my phone

 heading back across the grass I caught sight of white ahead...

some feathers...  something's come a cropper!!

on my way out I paused for a look at the new growth coming in the Broad Walk,  stems of the daffodils are growing, and the other spring growth is getting established!

Thanks very much for coming with  me again - South Western Railway are advertising more strike action so I am not sure if this will affect me next weekend yet... fingers crossed it isn't back to the bus!