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Photo Essay: Winter at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mount Coot-tha

“There is a privacy about {winter} which no other season gives you….
In spring, summer and fall people sort of have an open season on each other;
only in the winter, in the country, can you have longer, quiet stretches
when you can savor belonging to yourself.”
Ruth Stout

Sometimes you don’t have to go far to feel like you’re in a different world.

It happened to me this weekend when Bear and I arrived at a Brisbane appointment 30 minutes early. He settled himself into a sun-filled cafe with a cuppa while I happily meandered through the wintry Brisbane Botanic Gardens Mount Coot-tha.

The light was exquisite, soft and hazy yet blindingly bright. It was a welcome respite after the dark skies and pelting rains of winter storms back home.

It is the dead of winter here yet I didn’t even need a coat! Just a wool pashmina tied snuggly around my neck, warding off the chill from the shady spots as I ambled from one sunny space to the next.

Since it was so early I had the place to myself for the most part, my own private winter garden awash with golden light that shimmered and glowed through leaves and petals.

Sigh. πŸ™‚

In places where the sun hadn’t reached, blossoms were aglitter with tiny dew drops.

And these jeweled beauties were a piece of winter this Northern Hemisphere girl recognized: poinsettias.

I was startled to realize I’ve never actually seen them growing in a garden before, only potted in cellophane wrapped planters and delivered as gifts at Christmas time. It was lovely to see them in their natural form.

The wonderfully peaceful Japanese garden was a-flower with azaleas – in winter!! My mind boggles. It is so different from the winterscapes I grew up with in Canada.

I love these stately fellows, at once dignified and whimsical with their ramrod bearing and flashy petals.

And I love how cool and fresh these blooms are. They give me hope that Spring is on its way.

It was a gorgeous stroll and I felt all glowy myself after such beauties and soul-stirring light.

I found Bear in the cafe with our friend and we settled in for a good visit as we basked in the sunshine streaming through the open windows.

It was my kind of winter morning.

What is your favorite memory from your weekend?

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Lauryl Lane - Wow! Come to think of it… I don’t think I’ve ever seen poinsettias growing, either. Isn’t that strange? I don’t even know where they grow best!

Maureen | OrgasmicChef - I was up there just a few weeks ago. I loved it. I could go really often. I sat by that water hole and watched the ducks for ages. πŸ™‚

Ayelet - All Colores - I love flowers with rain drops on them – what a great use of time! My weekend is here, and my favorite memory of it so far is a conversation yesterday, where someone challenged me (in a good, empowering way) πŸ™‚ Hope you have a great weekend!

Kim - Liv Life - Oh, what gorgeous photos!! And how nice to have the gardens to yourself. I love early morning encounters like that, and the light is usually somewhat addicting. This is one of my favorite kinds of posts!!

Lindy Taylor - I miss you too!

Jenna Francisco - I love how you captured not just the plants but also the moments, with the dew and light. Lovely!

katyabroad - Beautiful photos – and I can’t believe it is Winter! It looks like a Summer garden. Just wonderful πŸ™‚

Krista - Thank you so much, @8c55800e368a37aa499c24f6424eb7b2:disqus πŸ™‚ It must be so beautiful in your part of the world right now. πŸ™‚

Krista - The Chinese Lanterns delight me too, @lizposmyk:disqus πŸ™‚ They’re so free-spirited and winsome. πŸ™‚ So glad you were able to experience gorgeousness in your part of the world too. πŸ™‚ I’m doing OK. Weaning myself off of some particularly dreadful medication and feeling a bit better each day. Such a relief to have some hope. πŸ™‚

Krista - I would happily share it with you, @wanderingsheila:disqus πŸ™‚ Your weekend with your family sounds so fun!! I haven’t spent much time in London, but I sure loved it. πŸ™‚

Krista - I’m so so sorry, @GlobalButterfly:disqus XO I can only imagine how stressful this weekend was for you. I’m SO glad your Dad came through his surgery OK. XO

Krista - Yep, still calling it June, @9d73767d10227efff04c7307e331304c:disqus πŸ™‚ Though it feels funny for sure!

Krista - Isn’t it a treasure of a moment, @95ea44c9817c2c8c2a30b7104fdf81c1:disqus ? Today it’s back to cold and gray with storm clouds looming. Ah well. πŸ™‚ I suppose it makes us super grateful for the gorgeous days, eh? πŸ™‚

Katie@Cozydelicious - Beautiful, beautiful photos – as always! Wishing I spent my weekend at a botanical garden!

Liz Posmyk - Krista, such a beautiful post! My daughter and I just had a similar experience at the Botanic Gardens in Cairns. Everywhere we looked we were awe struck by nature’s beauty. I love Chinese Lanterns… they are like little angels to my mind. Hope you are well.

Amphora: Delicious Inspiration for Healthy Eating » Rambling Tart - […] friend Elizabeth introduced Bear and I to this wonderful little spot in St. Lucia (Brisbane) last weekend. I immediately fell in love with the serene interior: cool white linens, turquoise […]

Cathy - Oh I’d like some of your winter weather Krista. Absolutely beautiful images of the gardens. Spending time out in London with my family was the best bit of my past weekend πŸ™‚

Andi Perullo - My weekend was awful. But these images surely brightened my day!!!

mlleparadis - ok catching up on all your posts i’ve missed! yes, weird that you’re having winter now! but you’re still calling it “june” aren’t you? it must be quite an adjustment! xoxo


Jackie Smith - Oh to have a winter morning that came with flowers and sunshine – our winters are gray and wet. . .well, it is beginning to look like that will be the state of our spring and summer as well. Thanks for the bright spot!!

Krista - Thanks so much, @lindytaylor:disqus πŸ™‚ I miss you!

Lindy Taylor - Beautiful photos Krista πŸ™‚

Krista - Thank you so much for telling me the name of those flowers, @ken_powell:disqus πŸ™‚ I wondered what they were called! Now that you mention it, they DO look like shrimp. πŸ™‚ Clearing up paperwork sounds so satisfying. I hope to do much of the same this week. πŸ™‚

Krista - What a fantastic day, @budgetjan:disqus ! πŸ™‚ I love that you had a turtle companion for your adventures. πŸ™‚

Ken Powell - I love your photos, Krista, and your timing with all the dew on the flowers. My favourite is your “stately flowers”, common name ‘shrimp plant’. It is rather mundane, but it was so wet here that it was a chance to clear up a backlog of paperwork.

budgetjan - Spent some quality time with our Son. He myself and B.H. went fishing on our boat out in Cleveland Bay. We saw a turtle many times as it circled our boat, popping his head up and eyeballing us then going under again. It was like a guessing game – where will he pop up next. How lucky we are.

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