As we pootled around the Botanic Garden in Nigel Taylor’s buggy admiring our surroundings we spotted a young monitor lizard on the trunk of a palm tree. The reason that it was up there turns out to be that if they stay on the ground their parents will eat them!
We spent an entire morning at the Botanic Garden which includes the Orchid Garden within it. We had the huge privilege of being taken round by Nigel Taylor the curator who was able to tell us what we were looking at – otherwise there would have been a great deal of guess work or consulting books. The undoubted highlight was the Orchid Garden – the colour and variety was astonishing and some of them are also deliciously fragrant. They were breathtaking in every way.
En route to Australia we spent two nights in Singapore. It is an extraordinary place and left and impression of fabulous botany and an amazing mix of ancient and contemporary architecture. It’s a long time since I have been somewhere that humid, so there was no racing from spot to spot, but in between retreating to air-conditioned interiors, we did visit both the Botanic Garden and the Gardens by the Bay and loved them both.
I’m about to depart these shores for the best part of a month (and will be blogging about my travels – wifi connections permitting) so I’ve been doing as much as I can to make sure that I come home to living plants. Despite the sudden arrival of cold weather, I’m reluctant to move the three citrus trees and a few other precious and fairly tender shrubs undercover where they would need to be watered regularly. Instead, I’ve put them on the lawn in the most sheltered and sunny corner of the garden where they should be happy till I get back. We very rarely get frosts here and I have moved the saucers from beneath the pots to make sure they don’t sit in water if it rains heavily. Elsewhere I’ve grouped potted plants together (again without saucers) so that they can create their own microclimate. Fingers crossed I’ll find them all thriving amongst the fallen leaves on my return.