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I'm a woman entering "the third chapter" and fascinated by the journey.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Shady Characters

Normally, I'm drawn to the kinds of flowers that bloom in full sun: roses, rudbeckias, all the usual suspects, but today I want to praise shade gardens, which have their own quieter kind of beauty, one that calls to us on warm summer afternoons. When heat and ultraviolet rays remind us that we can indeed have too much of a good thing (and after this past winter, who would have thought that?), I head for places cool and green and shady.

Today's post, then, involves some of the shady characters of the Toledo Botanical Gardens.

I've never been much of a fan of astilbe, but the astilbe walks are, literally breath-taking; I'd not known that astilbe had scent.

Well-grown ferns and hydrangeas (not the sort that manage to limp along in my yard)make wonderful companions to the varieties of astilbe.           

A companion of a different sort: the height of a happy ostrich fern measured against a six-foot spouse.                                                                                                                                                        

 The delights of changing light on impressive tree bark.

And a final joy:
the buds  

and blossom of a stewartia.

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