Bloom Day in December

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I have done relatively little work in the garden since October, when we returned from our home leave in the U.S. — so finding these bird of paradise or Strelitzia reginae blooms this morning was a nice surprise.

I will keep this post quite short because our internet speed has taken a nosedive today (descending to brink-of-tears level), and I just need to get on and off and go decorate the tree.

This is my last Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day report from Rwanda.  Next month, we are moving to Stuttgart, Germany. We are very excited about living in Europe for the first time. Please stay tuned. . . . and send me recommendations of German gardens to visit.

To see what’s blooming today for other garden bloggers, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens.

And have a wonderful holiday season!

10 thoughts on “Bloom Day in December

  1. What a strange and spectacular plant. I was at a shopping mall in Los Angeles in September, and all the traffic islands were planted with palm trees and birds of paradise. It was quite striking. It must be the ultimate tourist behavior to take pictures of the plantings at a mall! Happy holidays and good luck with your move.

  2. A German park/ public garden Rick Darke mentioned during a lecture he gave, probably ten years ago, made a big impression on me and remains a place I hope to visit one day: Landschaftspark near Dusseldorf. It’s on an old industrial site and many of the structures of the old ironworks are still there incorporated into the park. It seems the general area (Ruhr Valley, Duisburg- Essen, I think) has become an “industrial heritage” site, where other industrial buildings have been converted to new uses, many of them cultural. Darke’s images of this park fascinated me because the plantings were artful but intermingled within the old structures in such a way that many of them appear to have sprung up on their own, looking like what might naturally occur around abandoned buildings, only better. And I seem to remember that visitors can climb on some of the structures, some of which are quite high, which would never be allowed in the U.S. given our liability leery culture.

    I spent about 4 days in Berlin a few years ago — the only place I’ve visited in Germany– and the Tiergarten was glowing with fall color in mid-November, There were some nice plantings, including many North American natives, still looking good. The grounds of Frederick the Great’s summer palace in Potsdam (an easy day trip from Berlin) had impressive trees and I enjoyed the landscape in some ways more than the palace. I know there’s a German public garden known for its perennial trials, research, and display gardens — it may be affiliated with a university hort program — (Noel Kingsbury has written about it) but I can’t remember the name. Anyway, I hope you enjoy your stay in Germany. I’m sure you’ll discover some wonderful gardens and I look forward to hearing about them on your blog. Good luck with your move.

    (Speaking of Berlin, if you haven’t read Erik Larson’s In the Garden of Beasts, you should try it. )

    1. Thanks! I had seen pictures of the Landschaftspark years ago and had forgotten about it. For someone interested in garden design, it’s a huge opportunity to live in Germany. I think its designers (and environmentalists) have been tremendously influential in at least the last 40 years.

      I also visited Berlin for about 4 days in November (in 2010) for a conference and really liked the look of it (except maybe the getting dark at 4 p.m.). I’ve got Garden of the Beasts on my Kindle right now. I just finished Christopher Isherwood’s stories about Berlin. I’m also looking for good histories or novels set in the medieval or renaissance periods. And I’m thinking of tackling some Thomas Mann soon. (The best history on medieval Europe that I’ve read is The Forge of Christendom by Tom Holland.)

      Although the main thing I need to be reading right now is my Survival German book. Happy Holidays!

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