This past weekend, my husband surprised me by coming home from work early and telling me to pack a bag. We were making a quick getaway, sans kids. Just the two of us. He whisked me away to the lovely Vero Beach Hotel, where he had made reservations. And guess where we visited the next morning? McKee Botanical Gardens!!! I've wanted to visit this garden for ages. It was so sweet of Husband (aka Super Garden Man) to take me!!! ♥
The pond you see above, with its picturesque stone bridge is probably the prettiest scene in the whole place.
When we bought our tickets, the lady informed us the gardens were famous for water lilies. She was certainly not kidding. There were ponds and canals throughout the garden, just absolutely stuffed with water lilies and lotus. So many colors and varieties!
And they had their fill of the Giant Amazon Water Lily (Victoria Amazonica)...one of Planet Earth's most fascinating botanical wonders, in my opinion.
Check out the turtle on this giant lily pad! It was a full-grown turtle, not a baby. That should give you some idea as to the enormity of these plants, whose leaves grow up to six feet in diameter. And those giant, gorgeous blooms in the background? Lotuses...another fascinating botanical wonder.
Visiting gardens like this makes me wish I had my own water garden to cultivate. But no...there is neither space nor time here at PITV for such endeavors. So glad we have spots like this to visit. : )
Much as I loved the water gardens, I must admit, it was the bromeliads that captured my heart (and the camera lens) at McKee.
I swear, they must've had every bromeliad known to man plugged into this garden.
Well, at least every genus was represented, if not every species.
Did I mention I love bromeliads?
Oh, and it's always a treat to spy coconuts overhead. It's just a bit too cold here at PITV to grow the coconut palm, even though McKee Botanical Gardens sits at a higher latitude than us. So not fair!
Well, I took a hundred pics, but clearly, I cannot post them all (though I briefly considered doing just that). Anyway, I'll leave you with one more lovely specimen that caught my eye...an Australian tree fern. It graces a corner of a beautiful bamboo structure that I imagine would be a most perfect site to house a wedding.
...although...should you host a wedding in that spot, the photographer would have to be careful NOT to capture this nearby giant bird in the background. Ugh. This "masterpiece" was crafted from movie-set junk, according to the sign. The true masterpiece resides behind it, if you ask me. I love the Royal Poinciana tree!!!
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Hope you enjoyed this walk through McKee Botanical Gardens!
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