Visiting a conservatory is one of my favorite winter survival tools. It’s like going on a mini-vacation to the tropics without having to board a plane. When I entered the conservatory at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens near Charlotte, North Carolina, the exotic perfume of blooming orchids filled the air.
Orchids were everywhere – in pots on the floor, nestled into tree branches, and growing up the walls of waterfalls.
I loved that there were no “Do not touch” signs. Like me, this little girl was drawn to the scent of a low-hanging flower from the Hong Kong Orchid Tree.
It was a delight to bathe in vibrant colors – purple, lavender, yellow, orange, pink – so rare in nature during winter.
A red dot of color adds zing to the tip of a bromeliad leaf:
A heliconia flower burns like a flame among green foliage:
It was not only the colors that were vibrant – even the shapes of flowers and leaves, the folds of petals, serrations of leaves, spikiness of branches, added vibrant life force. These orchids were mostly white with just a touch of yellow but the luscious, ruffled shape of their petals spelled complexity and romance:
Waterfalls added the bright sound of splashing water and enlivened the air with moisture:
Strategically placed art work provided delightful surprises, such as this statue of vividly colored glass among the trees:
Several photographs of orchid close-ups invited visitors to examine the hidden details of these mysterious flowers:
I just kept smiling, smelling, admiring and touching – a few hours filled with vibrancy at the conservatory.
The Daily Post’s Photo Challenge theme: Vibrant.