08 May 2006
flowers, flowers, and more flowers
We finally made it to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden this weekend. We had hoped to make it in time to see the cherry blossoms, but were a bit too late—they had almost entirely turned green, and their petals all swept away. Maybe next year.
There were, however, no shortage of impressive displays. I had never visited the BBG before, and I was struck by how different it is from the New York Botanical Garden, which is a short train ride away in the Bronx. The NYBG is huge—you could wander for days and find yourself alternately in dense forested areas, wide rolling meadows, and carefully manicured gardens. The BBG doesn't have the luxury of all that space. And, in true New York fashion, it makes up for its lack of square footage by cramming as much jaw-dropping spectacle as possible into its 52 acres.
The grove of lilacs was so thick and lush, their fragrance was almost overwhelming. The thick lines of candy-colored azaleas looked as if they had been spray-painted on by an over-zealous painter. I have never been a huge fan of azaleas (which you probably noticed), but there was also some quite lovely rhododendron which reminded me of how azaleas probably looked before man began his determined tinkering with their DNA.
My absolute favorite find was the lily-of-the-valley. Growing quietly across the path from the grove of lilacs, they hardly demanded the attention of the passing crowds, and I imagine they really don't mind being ignored over their showier neighbors. You have to kneel down and get friendly with them before you smell their delicious scent. And by the time you've gotten that close, you can't but admire their perfect little forms, all nestled cozily amid their dark green foliage. Perfect.
Jennie fell in love with the pink dogwood—a lovely dusty rose kind of color that seems much more sophisticated than the more common bubble-gum pink.
I always feel that photographing flowers is cheating a bit. They are so beautiful, it seems too easy. But if photography is all about celebrating the beauty we see around us, I can't think of a better subject.
I've posted some more images from our trip on flickr—check it out if you want to see more.