Friday, April 22, 2011

Flashback Friday: Back to my Roots

Thank goodness it's Friday! I am so excited for the weekend to almost be here, and in just a few hours Ortie will be landing in the Burgh. This is one of my favorite times of year because everything is coming alive again. The trees are coming into full bloom, and flowers are sprouting up everywhere. It's times like these that make me remember my roots and why I studied Horticulture at Virginia Tech as an undergraduate student. OK, so yes, I am a bit obsessed with plants, more than the average person. But how can you not be in love with nature, especially this time of year?! Springtime is officially here, and I am all for celebrating!  Back in 2003 a group of hort students took a garden tour of England and Wales. It was one of the best trips I took while in College. So for this flashback Friday, I am getting back to my roots. 

I warn you now, if you don't care about plants, then you will be bored reading this post. But for those of you who have an appreciation for mother nature, this post is for you! 

When we were in England and Wales, Wisteria was in full bloom. Wisteria has always been one of my favorite woody plants, although it can grow crazy at times. It blooms in purple and white, and can climb a trellis or house like no one's business. This plant is fast growing, invasive, and tough. That's why I love it.   



 Check out these Rhododen's and Azalea's in full bloom. We have these shrubs at my parent's house back in Virginia, so whenever I see them I think of home. 





Hort students read and study about the history of landscape architecture throughout their degree. The English were some of the most influential designers to landscape architecture and designs of today. It was amazing to see some of these garden's I had read about in person. 


I was lucky to travel abroad with many of my best friends from school. 

Adrian and me 
Lovely Horticulture Ladies
Always willing to strike a pose

402K forever! Karen, Connie, and Me 


More Wisteria 

Queen Connie and Queen Katie- on our royal tree throne


  I stumbled across the artwork in one of the gardens. 
You know what they say about a man with big feet don't you.......big socks ;-)

Proud Tree Huggers! When was the last time you hugged a tree?

I love me some new growth. 


This specimen tree was massive! Can you see my room mate Connie in the bottom right of the picture? This tree needs it's own zip code. 

  
Check out these specimen lily pads. Enormous! 

Gunnera is native to Brazil, but grows well in England. Welcome to the Jungle, in the UK! 

Our group also got to see the Chelsea Flower Show while in London, which is one of the greatest flower shows in the world. The show was crowded, but fabulous. Glad to have ticked that off the bucket list. 



.
 The horticulture highlight of the trip, for most all of us, was seeing the famous Laburnum Arch in full bloom at Bodnant Garden. The pictures don't do it justice, but it was so beautiful.  

 This trip would not have been possible without our fearless leader, Robert McDuffie. This past week, McDuffie celebrated his birthday. Happy birthday BOB DUFF and thank you for putting up with all of us for those weeks in England and Wales. It was a trip we will remember forever!    

Until next time, I will see you on the internet.

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