Monday, 29 March 2010

Rained out at Niagara, but saved by the gardens!

My husband and I spent last week in Canada and my regular readers will already know that we visited several gardens en route to Mont Tremblant to do some skiing. It was incredibly cold, but we could sense spring in the air as the fast-melting snow made way for new bulbs poking their heads out of the ground. We visited the Montreal Botanical Gardens and Toronto, where I waxed lyrical about the Allan Gardens Conservatory. We also went to Niagara Falls, which was a first for my husband .... where we got soaked and soggy!
But thank heavens for the Niagara Parks' Botanical Gardens there, and the wonderful Butterfly Conservatory, where we spent several happy hours watching the brightly-coloured creatures weaving their way through the tropical jungle glasshouse that is their home (above). I've never seen butterflies like this before, so two magnificent displays in a week prompted me to do some research on other facilities like this in the US.

It seems there are several places you can see magnificent butterfly displays, including the Cecil Day Butterfly Centre at Georgia's Calloway Gardens; the Butterfly Rainforest in Gainsville, FL; and at the Western Colorado Botanical Gardens. I haven't had the chance to visit any of these personally, but this link lists all the Butterfly Gardens in the US. With the Easter break coming up, they make wonderful diversions for adults and children alike!
As for the Botanical Gardens at Niagara - I'm sorry to say that they weren't looking their best in the pouring rain, although I could see that they would be wonderful in better weather and a different season. The end of winter is never a good time to visit a garden, when the grass is brown and there is little colour yet in the flower beds. But there were many spring flowers in bloom in the Butterfly Conservatory (below) so I shall return one day, and hope to see the Falls in the sunlight too!

10 comments:

  1. You are so lucky to visit so many gardens! I love gardens, but not too fond of travelling :) Those butterflies are so beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I hear that the Canadian side of the Niagara Falls is the most beautiful. I hope to visit someday. I love the butterfly photos. Our local garden's butterfly pavilion features different species of butterflies. I always enjoy seeing all of the different kinds of butterflies.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Welcome to our part of the world, I live rather close to the Falls. Canadian Side. Yes lots of rain, and to-day was no exception. I hope you enjoyed our part of the world and spring is here at last. I hope that you take a peak at my Blog as it is about a my Garden here. Nothing fancy like the ones on your site though. Still I love it. It is a small town garden so not much room, O if I had the space!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh, I wich I had the opportunity to travel around the way you are! I'd love to all those great gardens with my own eyes. But I'm most greatful that you share them here with us. Have a wonderful week / gittan

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautifull butterflies! And wonderfull gardens! ;o)
    Marit.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Beautiful photographs, as always. The butterflies in the first photograph almost don't look real, but they're such a beautiful color.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wonderful gardens! You and your hubby must stay packed...seems you are always on the road. I like the butterflies here. Beauties.

    ReplyDelete
  8. You know it has never occurred to me to take my camera into the Butter-fly Conservatory. It is usually taking relatives to see the site and it has become all too common for me. I will be going in April so this will be wonderful. I just live so close to all this. It is my back door as it where. It is amazing it takes a traveler to let me know what I have here in the Niagara Region to take pictures of!!!, I must get a grip and start doing this. Thanx

    ReplyDelete
  9. You picked a perfect day to visit the Butterfly Conservatory. In my opinion it is best when it's cold and damp outside. Don't you love the brown ones - until they open their wings and they are brilliant blue.
    Definetly worth the drive to Niagara from wherever you are in the eastern U.S. or Canada.

    ReplyDelete
  10. There are places to go in Montreal to see insects and gardens also.
    Niagra is a neat place, but in my opinion best seen in summer. The Canadian side of the falls is better than the US side.

    ReplyDelete