springtime at lewis ginter & a milestone birthday party

Friday, May 9:  Today, I drive to Richmond to meet my daughter Sarah to celebrate her 30th birthday, which was on April 26.  We’re a couple of weeks late.  She’s been busy with four classes and as today is the last of her final exams, she’ll finally be able to relax and enjoy the party.  Mike and the boys drive separately to meet us at 4:00.  They plan to drive back home after dinner, while I intend to stay the night with Sarah in Richmond.  We have some shopping to do on Saturday for that birthday.

Since I arrive in Richmond around 2:00, and Sarah is still taking her exam, I drop by Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens to see what’s in bloom for spring.  As far as I’m concerned, this is one of the nicest gardens in Virginia, although I’m sure there must be many more beautiful ones throughout the state that I haven’t visited.  Here’s a little of what I find.

Click on any of the pictures below for a full-sized slideshow.

I have probably misnamed some of the flowers, so I would appreciate any gardeners out there who can set me straight.  For instance, I’m not sure if the flowers I’ve labeled azaleas are such, or if they’re rhododendron.  And I wish someone would tell me the name of the white flowers with the yellow Chihuly-like centers.

{Thanks so much to Carol of Wanderings of an Elusive Mind and Jonah from Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens for setting me straight on the flower names!)

By the time I finish walking around the gardens on this hot and humid day, I’m soaked and my hair is sticking out like it’s been whipped with egg-beaters.  I run to Sarah’s and take a shower so I won’t look like the dregs of society when we go out tonight.  The celebration is mainly for Sarah’s birthday, but also for the end of her demanding semester. It’s also a celebration for Mother’s Day.  It’s not often I have all three of my children together.

Sarah has the idea to go to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts for wine tasting on the patio.  In the pond beside the patio are Chihuly’s Red Reeds.

Chihuly's Red Reeds
Chihuly’s Red Reeds

I take a picture of my three children, but, as I don’t have my glasses on, I don’t realize until later that Sarah’s eyes are closed. 🙂

Alex, Sarah & Adam
Alex, Sarah & Adam
Mike, Sarah, Alex & Adam
Mike, Sarah, Alex & Adam

We then head to dinner at Bacchus on Main, where we have a feast fit for kings, a queen and a princess.  As Sarah seems to know all the waiters in the Richmond establishments, we get some little perks, like a dessert we don’t order and an extra appetizer.  Happy birthday to Sarah!

Bacchus: Sarah on the left, Alex, Adam and Mike on the right. :-)
Bacchus: Sarah on the left, Alex, Adam and Mike on the right. 🙂
Enhanced by Zemanta

19 thoughts on “springtime at lewis ginter & a milestone birthday party

  1. Yes, I think the orange flower is a dahlia. The pink and yellow by the fringe tree (I have a very small fringe tree – I’m hoping to see it grow big) is Lantana I think. The yellow pretties look like Nicotiana to me. The orange leaved plant looks like a Bromeliad, and I think the orange flowers to its right are Clivia, which I wish would grow here but won’t. I believe the white ball flowers are Allium. The white flower with the curly yellow center could be a single peony. I question the purple flower you called Lavender – it looks more like Chives to me, but I won’t swear to it. Love the red reeds! And the great family pictures, looks like a great weekend.

    1. Oh Carol, you are the best!! Thanks so much for all the great information on the flowers. I’m going to go back and fix all my flower names. I also heard from Lewis Ginter Gardens, who also filled me in on flower names. It turned out to be a great weekend. I loved having my family together, a rare thing these days!

  2. Thanks so much for your post Cathy. We love watching someone enjoy our garden so much!
    Carol’s right on a few of these. Let’s see Latana is correct (butterflies LOVE it!), it is chives, not lavendar, the white ball is Alluim, and the white flower with curly yellow is indeed a peony. The yellow/orange azaleas are called Aromi hybrid azaleas, sometimes also called Florida azaleas.
    Love the shots from VMFA & Bacchus too. What a special treat to spend such a nice weekend with your family.

    1. Thank you so much, Jonah. I’m glad you liked my post. Thank you so much, and Carol too, for telling me the names of the flowers. I’m going to go back and edit now so they all have the correct names. I really do think Lewis Ginter is one of the nicest gardens I’ve ever visited. I hope to be back again in summer and fall. Actually I have three other posts you may enjoy from last August: https://catbirdinamerica.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/lewis-ginter-botanical-garden-the-conservatory-butterflies-live/ AND https://catbirdinamerica.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/lewis-ginter-botanical-garden-succulents-palms-orchids-and-other-little-pretties/ AND https://catbirdinamerica.wordpress.com/2013/08/16/the-grounds-of-lewis-ginter-botanical-garden/

      It was funny, I had so many pictures, I had to write three posts!!

      It was really a treat to spend time in Richmond with my family. My daughter works at Joe’s Inn. I used to live in Richmond myself, and if I had the opportunity to live there again, I would do so in a heartbeat!!

  3. Lovely flowers Cathy. What a gorgeous garden! Oh and how I love Chihuly’s glass sculptures.

    The difference between Azaleas and Rhodos is that all Azaleas are Rhodos but not all Rhodos are Azaleas! The azaleas are usually smaller shrubs and have the most yellow and orange flowers, they also have 5 stamens whereas Rhodos have 10. Hope that helps! The white flower with the egg-yolk centre is a Romneya coulteri or Californian Tree Poppy or Matilija poppy. And the unnamed little red flowers could be Geums.

    You look to have had a great celebration. I didn’t know that Adam was home again – how did his time in California go? Any help to him re: his career moves?

    1. Thanks Jude for sharing all your knowledge. Thanks for the lesson on Azaleas and Rhodos; I never knew all that. I’m not really a gardener, though I do love flowers. As far as the white flower, someone from Lewis Ginter wrote and told me it was a type of peony. I looked up the peony and your poppies, and they look very similar except the poppies seem to have roughter, textured white petals. The white ones pictured here were next to other peonies at the garden.

      I added the Gerums to the little red flower picture. 🙂

      It was fun, especially for Mother’s Day, to have all the kids together. Adam returned home at the end of March and had a great experience. Now he’s involved with a group in Maryland that’s doing permaculture designs on people’s properties. It’s a kind of internship. 🙂

  4. And here I thought VA is for lovers. It is also for lovely gardens. Don’t you just love Chihuly glass? I have seen several of his exhibits amongst gardens. Lovely time spent with family, Cathy. They’re not little ones any more. 🙂

    1. Oh yes, Lynne, Virginia is for lovers!! And gardens in springtime and fall foliage in autumn. I love Chihuly sculptures wherever I see them. They’re truly amazing. You’re right, the kids are not little anymore, but they’re not fully launched either! 🙂

  5. These are some of your best flower photos ever, Cathy! They scintillate 🙂
    Nice to see you all looking so happy together. If only that could be enough! You’re going back to teach Summer school in your old school? The book sounds fascinating! I’m putting everything in here to stop you having to hop back to mine 🙂

    1. Thanks so much, Jo. I’m so glad you like my flowers. 🙂

      I was offered an intensive class to teach at my old school, and I took it, and then they withdrew the class because enrollment was “abysmal.” Then on Friday, they offered me a part-time class, just 3 mornings a week. That’s fine by me for now. And that is barring any withdrawals b/c the class has only 7 students. I’m actually thinking of applying abroad again, Jo. I love my family and I’m happy to be with them, but I need to travel. It’s in my blood. And if I have no job here to support my habits, then I’ll need to do what I need to do! We’ll see what happens!

      1. I thought it would probably come down to that, Cathy. It seems so wrong that a country as big and successful as the States can’t find you a job!
        So where’s favourite? Not back to Oman, I don’t imagine. This time last year, Cathy, you would have been in Europe? I will never forget you and your luggage!!! Big hugs 🙂 🙂

      2. Haha, it’s so funny that you’ll remember me always for my luggage, Jo. I won’t return to Oman, don’t worry, but I am open to China or somewhere in Asia. We’ll see where I end up.

  6. Wow, those orchids are stunning. It’s interesting to see lantana being cultivated as a garden plant. Here it is regarded as a noxious weed and is treated accordingly. It was one of the plants brought by the First Fleet as a decorative garden plant but like many other plants it loved our climate and took over in the wild. Many areas of bushland have been dominated by lantana in the past but have now been cleared of it by much hard work.

    I am interested to see more of the sculptures by Chihuly. I haven’t heard of this artist…you should do a post for me. That would be so much more interesting than googling.

    Lovely photos of your family.

    1. I’ve heard lantana is a noxious weed, Carol; I heard that in Spain too. It is surprising that they do cultivate it then. I think butterflies do really love it, so if they’re trying to attract butterflies, maybe that’s the reason.

      I’ve seen Chihuly exhibits in the past, but I don’t have any photos of his work. Apparently he has some gorgeous glass sculptures over the Venice canals. I’d love to see & photograph more of his work. I wish I could help with a post!!

      I’m glad you like seeing my family. It was nice to have them all together. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s