Friday, November 13, 2009

British Columbia trip revisited Part V

Our whole trip to British Columbia was based on going to see Butchart Gardens. In the fall of '08 I received an email forward that was a lovely scene of Butchart in the autumn. I forwarded it along to my good friend Nancy and she replied "why don't we plan a trip there next fall?" So this trip was a year in the planning and dreaming. And now finally, it was the day to go visit Butchart.
We started out with a 'typical English breakfast' as our host told us, in this pretty dinning room. A very nice way to start the day. The B & B was only a few minutes away from the Gardens so we had a nice leisurely breakfast and packing up.
John and I had been to Butchart on our 25th anniversary, but our friends had never been there. What a treat we were in for! The weather was still cool, but not as cold and there were only a few minor showers, no real heavy rain for which we were grateful. They had umbrella's you could use, but I didn't want anything to block my views! As we got our tickets we noticed that they were featuring lunch included with a modest fee added on. So we signed up for lunch and made reservations.
One of my grand kids asked recently what my favorite flower was. I honestly couldn't answer because I have toooo many favorites. In the gazebo as we started they had these lovely baskets of double begonias. *By the way I hope you like long posts, because so many of these photos were beautiful, I couldn't help but post most of the ones I took. Hope you enjoy the tour, and feel like you were there Aunt Elna, Kathy, Julie, Mom and Aunt Wilma!

There are so many unique things about this garden. Because it was planted in an old rock quarry there is a 'canyon' shape to it, and lots of contours. This photo was taken where you climb a hill to a little viewing house on top. Lest you think the insurance man has started drinking coffee, no such luck. He is holding mine while I take the photo.
This is the INCREDIBLE view from the top...and no those colors are not touched up, they are the real thing. I wasn't too sure about a late October visit to the garden but it put all my fears to rest. Everything was more than glorious.... and I don't think the colors could be outdone at any time of the year. The crowds were very small also, another added benefit.

This is me peeping out of the window and taking another breathtaking shot. The head gardener here does an amazing job of putting things together for color and texture and bloom.

One more photo from the top...

Next some photos of the fall color in the trees. Without all the beautiful pine and fir though the color wouldn't have stood out as much. The blending of plants and trees really struck me this visit.

Boy did I enjoy autumn on this wonderful day...

At the far end of the gardens on this side is this natural area, complete with a lake and fountain. In the summer they have fireworks from here, but I think I enjoyed the fall color just as much or more.

This is another photo coming back the way we had strolled....aren't the purple leaves striking?

The insurance man took this photo from the crest before the last view before we went on to other garden areas. It was hard to leave here!

They are adding a children's area, complete with a carousel. Glenn and the insurance man posed for their wives cameras.
Next we went on to another of my favorite flowers, the dahlia gardens. We both enjoy these magnificent specimens of God's creativity... enjoy!

I just love the photo above. It looks like an oil painting, one of God's!
We tore ourselves away from the dahlia's to make our way to the restaurant for lunch.
On the way we saw these circles of single begonia's in the green lawn, and they made such a pretty display.
We also walked through the rose garden, as the house/restaurant is just past it. Of course the roses were mostly past, but there were enough left to really enjoy. The structures present to support trailing roses were more noticeable perhaps, and we examined them to get ideas for our own garden.

We found that we were glad we had made reservations. The ticket/lunch had proved popular, so many were turned away. The restaurant is very pretty and very much like having lunch in a garden.
We each had something different, and everyone loved what they had. The food was absolutely delicious. The insurance man had a burger made from ground sirloin, and he said it was the best ever...and I had an autumn squash soup.
The soup was delightful, but oh my...the dessert. It was a lemon curd that was the best thing I have put in my mouth in a long time. I just had to take a photo to preserve the memory : )

After a very leisurely lunch which we all enjoyed immensely, it was back out to the gardens for some more visual delight.

We visited the rose garden again, the Japanese garden, the Italian garden and then a peep out into Puget Sound. There is a little cove at the far end of the garden where the original Butchart family kept a boathouse and enjoyed the water.
Here is the boat they keep now, named after the lady 'Jennie Butchart' who had the vision for this glorious garden. Note that it's raining now, and starting to get serious.
We began to make our way back to the entrance, and went by this pond in the Italian garden. In the background you can see the house where we had our lunch. Also note the rather large arched wall of arborvitae, and the two white arches cut into it....
I thought this would make a good last photo from our time in the gardens. The arborvitae made a wonderful dividing wall, and I was amazed at how big and well it grew there.
Needless to say, we felt very blessed on this day to have the opportunity to visit here. It made our fall of 2009 memorable. We left reluctantly to drive back to catch the ferry to the mainland. Because we stayed and enjoyed it so long, we didn't arrive at Whistler until about midnight. Glenn did the driving home, which was greatly appreciated while we dozed. A wonderful memory...

1 comment:

Peter Jones said...

Will says he could look for days there! The boys learned what a dahlia is and we all enjoyed the pictures SO much! The wall with the doors in it was terrific! (Will) He's never seen anything like it in his life. Sam liked the red dahlia that looked like a sun and thought the boat was cute. Ben says he could stay there forever and he wishes he would have gone.
Julie and boys