Saturday, May 27, 2017

A scorcher of a day and another early start at Kew

We've been "enjoying" a few days of scorching heat and sunshine in the UK and of course as this is a Bank Holiday weekend, storms were forecast and rain... However, despite the promise of scattered thunderstorms before another hot day I decided to go again anyway.

The train journey was interesting... got to Clapham Junction where I change trains to find news of the trains towards Hounslow (where my Kew train ends up) were disrupted due to an "incident"  This normally means a jumper on the track but apparently it was a trespasser, not so traumatic for the train driver!!  So I was diverted and had to go a different way; but managed to get to Kew just as the gates opened at 8am... and just as dark clouds were looming...  never mind; we're British, we just carry on..

 I knew from a tweet from one of the Kew accounts that the alliums at the Palm House were fading... amazing how much in just a week!
 an early morning stroll with the family...
 these were still beautiful in purple last week - still gorgeous, just green now!
 and a gaggle of adult geese out for a walk too...
 this variety is obviously longer lasting
 the blooms on the huge tulip tree are coming out...
this is just one of the side branches, love the patterns!
Started to walk down the Broad Walk.

 a favourite colour combination of the purple-blue with the dark yellow behind
 and this beautiful dark iris

more yellow and purple combination

I could feel spots of rain in the air now.. needed to find shelter...

I headed for the Hive where I knew at least I could stand under the glass bottomed layer...

another lady had the same idea and we chatted for a bit till it lessoned

the rain only lasted a few minutes though the sky was still quite dark

 staring up through the hexagonal shaped structure whilst waiting for the rain to stop

 the wildflower meadow has changed a lot in a week too

 I couldn't resist zooming down to the Broad Walk alliums from the Hive; you get great views from there
 yes, the sky is still very dark!
 love the daisies (they're probably proper posh wild daisies but there are no labels in the meadow) through the rusty bars

 heading back down... bright skies coming, that's good!

 new planting outside the Princess of Wales....
hedge full of white blooms... didn't notice the butterfly till I got home (the sun was very bright on my screen so I couldn't really see a lot of what I was taking!) - also, I was zooming in from quite a distance.... and not wearing my glasses either!
 the Davis Alpine house already had it's doors open and someone was working in there, so I was able to walk through
 no idea what this was, but it's tall!

 always love climbing roses against a brick wall!
 ...or pergola
 the Californian poppies were glorious,

 and the bees were hard at work

 spent ages trying to make the camera focus on the red poppy not the ones in the background!  perhaps I should go manual.....

 the roses make a great frame for the white "fluff" behind
will go and check what it is next time!
love a group of delphiniums.. wonder what the collective noun is....
 and I knew they would look stunning with the golden Californian poppies behind them

huge peonies!

 couldn't resist going back for a last close up

 beautiful blue mecanopsis
spent ages trying to force the focus on this too!

 walked round the Palm House pond to the cafe and breakfast...
 gunnera growing!

 this cistus was just beautiful
 the bee flew in just as I was taking this one!
 after breakfast, came out and walked past one of the Beasts (I'll tell you about them one day) outside the Palm House round to the Rose Garden...

 where the sky was blue and it was now very hot, no sign of rain.  (it's still not even  9 am)

I love playing with perspective in my photos...
 I love this tree, it reminds me of the Whomping Willow in the Harry Potter film  (I know it's not a willow, it's the shape!)
 love the sun shining through leaves

 tiny little blue flowers in the grass..
 I walked round the lake, looking for shade, to rest...
love the reflections today
 hmm.  have a few of these at home!  (cobwebs, I mean, sadly!)

 sat on a bench for a few minutes...

a group of babies (4 or 5) came marching past, right by my feet, not a care in the world,

 I carried on round the end of the lake,

 haven't seen the tree house since I came across it by chance the first time!  did the same again this time!

 gorgeous dappled shade, was tempting to linger a while....

 certainly couldn't face climbing up the Treetop today!
 so I walked through the Mediterranean garden and lots of Cistus...

 bathing in the sunshine..

love the papery look to this one.

 a tantalising glimpse of the Temperate House - they are on the final year of the redevelopment/refurbishment programme..
 huge groups of Cistus
back at the Palm House, now 10 am
 So I walked through the middle door and
 couldn't resist a last look at the alliums..
 love these big open ones, rather than the tight ball-like ones - they look like they've exploded!
I think these still have some way to go to their best..
 quick look in the Waterlily house.
 walked down the Broad Walk again to find a loo, a cold drink and home...

 more huge peonies in the small bed outside the Orangery restaurant.
 more fabulous iris
and pink/purple grouping

 love these tiny pink flowers, covering a huge shrub, it was taller than me

 and horse chestnut flowers
that's it for today...

checked that the trains were ok, headed for home..

3 and a bit hours...240 more photos.... and  6 miles walked, according to the pedometer I had found to take with me...  (thanks to Josh at work) -
that seems an awful long way, not sure if it's accurate or not!  
(edit... the pedometer thingy says 13280 steps.. so maybe it was 6 miles!)


Miriam said...

Absolutely stunning photos... Pleased you got there eventually.... I especially love the poppies and peonies. Sounded like a great day.

sam21ski said...

Lovely to see some red, yellow and orange popping up today alongside that sea of purple. Do you know what that one is called in the 7th photo up from the bottom? xx

Angela Curror said...

What gorgeous colours and textured! Fabulous photos!

Julia Dunnit said...

I had no idea that you went so early! Blimey, 6 miles before lunch. Napping before the football? !!
I love all the pics...but the California poppies made me gasp this week!

Hilary said...

Beautiful photos. Love the colours and close-ups.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I'm British and I love the rain. My hair curls even more in the rain!

Yes, the first photo from this week is so much different from last week. Most of the lavender/purple is gone!

OK, you got me. I have never heard of a tulip tree before!!!

I never knew the Hive could be such good shelter. Good thing there weren't a whole lot more people needing to share it with you.

You have NO idea how many times I notice something after I've downloaded it. And that goes double when the camera screen is backlit. I think your butterfly was super. And as always, I LOVE the photos from the Alpine House. Such a cool place and lovely and unique design.

That red poppy in the foreground is photo worthy. You should send it into a photography magazine, it is THAT GOOD!!

My peonies have been gone for WEEKS. And I wonder if the "white fluff" will be there when you return again. And the gunnera are getting so big you will soon have to find a different spot to photograph them if you still want to see the fountain in the lake, or the Palm House from there.

Wow, the waterlilies are really filling out the water and those beauties in the Mediterranean Garden.

Well worth the hours and miles you walked, because you came up with some truly awesome photos. Have a great remainder of your bank holiday.

Neet said...

I have said it before and I will say it again - you should do a calendar with all those photos you take. Stunning photography
Hugs, Neet xx.

Diana Taylor said...

Fabulous photos Helen, thanks so much for the link, I always enjoy your beautiful images. The peonies are just stunning and one of my favourite flowers and I also love the mix of bright red and vivid orange poppies together - I bet that looked even more amazing in real life.
Diana x

Christine said...

Thank you again for sharing your wonderful visit. I do so enjoy the photos.

Kirsten said...

So much beauty and colour in one place, woncderful photos.