In May of last year, during my week in London I visited the Kew botanical gardens twice, the second time in the company of fellow blogger-photographer Rachel Rawlins. I shot more than 500 photos at Kew all told (though in retrospect I should’ve doubled that number and taken photos of the labels for each plant, too, so I’d actually be able to i.d. everything).
I shared the first part of those photos in a post here last August about the oldest of Kew’s signature glasshouses, the Palm House. Last night, I presented a slideshow on Kew to my local Audubon chapter, so in the past few days I’ve processed a bunch more photos — and now they’re uploaded to Flickr as well. You can browse the set (especially if you’re on a slower connection) or view the slideshow. (I could embed it in the post, but what’s the point? It should be viewed at full-monitor size.)
The second day I went to Kew, it was their spring festival, with stilt walkers, live world music and teeming crowds. The set begins with the Palm House, moves to the treetop walkway (with a shot of the Chinese pagoda in passing), then proceeds to the Temperate House. Then it’s back outside for a couple of live bands, a few of the more picturesque trees, and some random shots from smaller glasshouses, and we end in the newest of the “big three,” the Princess of Wales Conservatory.
Revisiting these photos, I came to a realization about what my favorite group of plants is, aesthetically speaking. The set closes with them: the cacti. Maybe I really belong in the desert.