I'm back home again now - but the Blogger app for my phone seemed just as flaky as the PC version. (The PC version of Blogger doesn't let me change the colours or layout, which is why I can't comment individually on comments - it comes out yellow on white!). Although I scheduled three posts during my absence, the app didn't post them, and in fact completely deleted one when I tried to post it manually. But that's life, and here's one of the posts which should have appeared during my absence. It's a continuation of the Kew post. Hope you like it!
It's all about some of the (mostly weird and wonderful) plants I wanted to show you from Kew. I should have carefully noted their names... but I forgot to. Though I can tell you this one is a lotus.
As well as the new gallery of botanical art, there's also a gorgeous Victorian one next door, which was purpose built to house the paintings of the most intrepid maiden Victorian lady called Marianne North. She travelled the world alone in search of amazing plants and she would have known all the names I don't. Here's a glimpse of the gallery, below, with just a few of her paintings.
So the first flower is a lotus, right? And these wonderful things were dangling downwards like party decorations, in the tropical section, but I don't have any idea what they are.
A most exotic water lily here.
And this is a very tiny one, about a tenth of the size of the blue lily
These two groups below are carnivorous plants. The green one appears to be smeared with blood, so best not think too closely about what that is supposed to convey.
These are prettier but still a bit sinister.
No idea what this is. It looks a little disturbing to me, specially since it seems to be made of green knobbly rubber
And talking of disturbing, what about the huge thorns sticking through this delicate white plant? It doesn't seem to mind and it is in fact full of pollen.
This one has its pollen laid out invitingly on its long thin "tongue" so the bees really don't need to go to any trouble at all.
More spininess - the familiar prickly pear has beautiful flowers, like satin.
And I like this cactus, too, with all its radial patterns.
What a contrast is this ethereal grass, waving in the breeze outside
And here is a little pond, reflecting a display of California poppies
There is a collection of orchids at Kew, and this curious little specimen reminds me irresistibly of a gnomish little bad fairy in a party dress which is too big for her. She even seems to have green and black wings.
I do like bonsai, so was impressed with this unusual Japanese maple, which is 100 years old and was grown by a Japanese master bonsai cultivator.
Finally, here's another shot of that lotus because I just can't leave it out. To my way of thinking, lotuses are perhaps the most beautiful and mysterious flowers.