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Category Archives: Flowers

There doesn’t seem to be as many of them but the Groundnuts are blooming along the Red Cedar Trail. They are a little hard to find hidden behind the leaves. Some of the places I’ve traditionally found them don’t seem to have any this year.

If you have been on the Red Cedar Trail recently you will have noticed that the Touch-me-nots are blooming all along the trail. The Spotted-touch-me-nots are the most common.

There are also a few Pale Touch-me-nots blooming.

The boat crew said goodby to our home for 7 days and traveled by cab to Amsterdam Schiphol Airport where we said our goodbys to members of the group. Dave and Sara caught a train to France, Lisa and Jim caught a plane to Stockholm and Linda and Phil stashed their belongings at the airport and caught a bus to Keukenhof Gardens to see the tulip displays. We found out earlier that the tulip displays in the fields were gone. The Netherlands has a couple of weeks of very warm spring weather so the tulips didn’t last long. When we arrived we found that the flowers at Keukenhof were still in full bloom. I can’t say enough about the experience so I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

More photos from Keukenhof can be found on my website.

After spending the afternoon at Keukenhof Gardens we returned to Amsterdam Schiphol Airport to collect our packs. We then caught a bus that we hoped would take us to somewhere near our Airbnb. We had to walk a few blocks from the bus stop before finding it. We were just getting unpacked when someone opened the back door. It turned out it the husband of the woman who managed it. He didn’t realize we had checked in. The woman was mortified and turned out to be really nice. It was a great place to stay.

Last week I took a walk through Leif Erickson Park in Duluth to check on the flowers. The roses were not in bloom yet and one of the caretakers indicated that it would be another couple of weeks. Seems that things are a couple of weeks behind because of of the late spring snow. There were still a variety of flowers blooming.

In the Wild Ones flower garden I found

Wild Geraniums

Columbine

There were a variety of Tulips blooming.

There were some onions and Bleeding Hearts bloomins.

Onion

Bleeding Heart

The Azaleas were in full bloom.

The end of spring and quite a few wildflowers are blooming at Crex Meadows. If you go to photograph them make sure you are protected from ticks. The seem to be out in large numbers.

Lupine and Puccoon

Lupine and Puccoon

Hoary Puccoon

White Water Lily

Indian Paintbrush

Downy Phlox

Common Yarrow

Columbine

Canadian Anemone

Blue Flag Iris

 

 

I was able to photograph quite a few spring flowers on my last visit to Crex Meadows.

 

I’m still photographing a few backlit leaves.

There are still a few Downy Yellow Violets around.

We have a few Persian Onions blooming. I planted them last fall.

With the snow gone we drove down to the Red Cedar Trail to see if the Skunk Cabbage was up. It was way up and already producing leaves. It is always the first flower of spring.

 

We were in Stavanger for to view the Tall Ships when we received a text from my wife’s cousin suggesting that we tour Flor og Fjære.  We had never heard of it but decided to follow up on her suggestion. We stopped in at their office near the harbor. As it turned out all of the tours were booked but they had added a special late evening tour that still had some openings. After pondering it a bit we decided to book the trip. We met the tour boat at 6pm and had a Pleasant boat trip out to the island of Sør-Hidle. Flor og Fjære is a collection of man-made tropical gardens on what is normally a barren island. In 1965, the founders, Aasmund and Else Marie Bryn, bought a farmstead on the northern tip of the island Aasmund moved to the island due to poor health conditions. As his health improved, he started the gardens. Aasmund had been a florist in Stavanger so he had a background in creating floral landscapes. He planted pine trees around the property line of the garden to protect his plants from the wind common to the for the region. The island is currently run by Aasmund’s son, Olav Bryn, who opened the gardens for tours and plants and redesigns the garden every year. He continually tests new plants to see if they will adapt to the northern climate. Bryn also tests different arrangements. Gardens on the island range from roses to cacti and each garden contains exotic plants from all over the world. The tour package includes a boat trip to and from the island, a tour of the gardens and a dinner at the restaurant with a rotating buffet prepared by their chef, Andre Mulder.

More photos from our visit to Flor og Fjære can be found on my website.

It was late in the day when we arrived and we were met by the owners and given a tour of part of the grounds. The weather was great when we arrived but we could see clouds building. We took a break for a very nice buffet dinner.

It started to thunder and rain while we were eating. We decided to postpone desert so we could tour more of the grounds so we grabbed an umbrella and walked around between downpours.

This is definitely a place I would like to spend a lot more time at. Normally we would have been able to enjoy the grounds more but as it turned out this was the only time we had rain in the entire seven weeks we were in Scandinavia.

It was dark when we arrived back in Stavanger. When we walked along the harbor we noticed everyone looking up into the sky. We were puzzled as to what they were looking at when the fireworks started. We found out later another of my wife’s cousins was at the same location but at this time we had never met them.

 

Vigeland Sculpture Park in Oslo is a popular place to visit for tourists and locals. It is particularity crowded on weekends.

More photos from the Sculpture Park can be found on my website.

The initial draw for us was the many sculptures found in the park. It was often difficult to photograph them because of the large number of people.

In addition to the sculptures there are many beautiful flowers.

There are play areas for children and adults in the park.

It was a warm day. Norway was experiencing an abnormally warm summer with temperature in the 80’s. In order to cool off we headed for the ice cream shop and then took a walk on the tree lined paths found throughout the park.