Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: Longwood Conservatory

Valentine’s Day at Longwood 2016 | Photos

Happy Valentine’s Day! Here are some flower children to brighten your day, chosen because my eyes love looking at them. The couple above make me laugh. Creatures from another planet welcoming us with open antennae and open arms. Or are those gullets? And how about those imposing hats?

All photos in this post were taken at Longwood Gardens by D, my partner for over 54 years. Sometimes I ask him to take a particular picture. Most of the time, though, he just shoots away, and I post whatever strikes my fancy. A fine arrangement.

Here are two photos in gorgeous pinky tones. The second may look like it’s upside down, but I don’t think it is. The small, single-petal blossoms seem to be hanging down on stems, floating in the air.

The next plant, not an orchid, has beautiful pink and orange tones. Muted cool-blue/green background and foreground colors make it a standout. Not a stunningly beautiful plant, but serene and sure of itself. What’s not to love?

Next we have three members of the orchid family, each different, and begging for attention. I’m torn between the first two. The first is rather imposing and sure of itself. Just below, we have a quiet, gentle type. Which shows how little I know about orchid anatomy. In the third photo, we seem to have a family competing for attention. Or maybe they’re celebrating someone’s birthday? Or Valentine’s Day?

Finally, perhaps my favorite. It’s totally calm, serene, and happy in its subdued non-orchid outfit. Elegant. Not flashy.

Wishing you an elegant day no matter how messy things get from time to time. Thanks for visiting!


© Elouise Renich Fraser, 14 February 2020
Photos taken by DAFraser in February 2016 at Longwood Gardens

A Christmas Card for You | Photos

A few days ago D and I took an eagerly anticipated day off to visit Longwood Gardens. The theme for this year was a French Christmas. Classy and elegant. The pond photo at the top, taken in the conservatory, makes the statement boldly and creatively. Those are thousands of cranberries and green apples floating in the pond. The light buff in the center foreground would be walnuts painted gold!

Directly behind the pond, you  can see three wreaths hanging just outside the conservatory’s formal parlor. Here’s the central wreath, followed by a photo of the Christmas tree in the parlor. The wreath contains cranberries, green apples, small shiny ornamental balls and sprayed bronze leaves.

Turning around, we head back into the central Conservatory atrium decorated with poinsettia trees and plants, and a few grapefruit trees with their own decorations hanging heavy.

We also checked out the Children’s Garden, where we found a clever tribute to French style sitting atop a gargoyle-like spitting fountain! It’s paired here with an elegant French-inspired Christmas tree ornament.

In the Palm Room we found a lovely orchid Christmas tree with tiny white lights, clear beaded ornaments and shiny silver globes reflecting their surroundings. Then we headed for the children’s trees, decorated by children from area schools. The example below is particularly exuberant, a nice contrast to the more sedate yet glamorous orchid tree.

Finally, would you believe a succulent Christmas tree? The second photo shows some detail. A spectacular feat of design and innovative construction.

For all my wonderful visitors and followers, I wish you a blessed Christmas, and a New Year of personal peace and contentment. Plus time to enjoy small things that make all the difference.

I’ll continue posting as I’m able in the next week — with time off for family, friends, and self-reflection.


© Elouise Renich Fraser, 21 December 2017
Photos taken by DAFraser at Longwood Gardens

Dancing with Chrysanthemums | Photos

Chrysanthemums have never been my favorite flower. When I was a starry-eyed teenager, getting a chrysanthemum corsage from an admirer was distinctly less impressive than an orchid corsage. Not that I had many opportunities to receive such favors, thanks to the strict No Dancing Rule in my family. Still, I got the occasional corsage for banquets, and orchids were the best!

Orchids are still magical–witness the orchid photo below, taken in Longwood’s ever-blooming orchid house.

Yet my appreciation for chrysanthemums is growing.

Longwood’s annual Chrysanthemum Festival is about more than flowers. It pays homage to Japanese Americans, their homeland, and the way they’ve enrich our lives daily with beauty and grace. The numbers of ‘pilgrims’ to this Festival is substantial, including homegrown and overseas families. I find this humbling, given our history with Japanese Americans during World War II, including the bombing of their country.

Here’s a quick tour, including a very short video about growing and shaping those huge Longwood Chrysanthemum ‘mushrooms.’ Did you know each of them is only one chrysanthemum plant, patiently trained, shaped and transported into the Conservatory?

First, some favorite photos from the main Conservatory. The huge Japanese lanterns rolling on the grass have tiny lights inside, not visible during the daytime–I’m sad to say!

As promised above, here’s what it takes to create just one of those stunning Thousand Bloom Chrysanthemum plants. Longwood Gardens made the video in 2009. It’s only 3 and a half minutes long.

Finally, here are a few more Japanese lantern photos. First, from the silver, gray and blue cactus garden. These lanterns also have tiny lights inside. You might be able to spot a few if you look carefully at shaded lanterns in the second photo.

And finally, a few spectacular shots of the passageway that runs beside this garden.

Thanks so much for taking time to stop by today!


©Elouise Renich Fraser, 8 November 2017
Photos taken by DAFraser, 28 October 2017, Longwood Gardens Chrysanthemum Festival
Daily Prompt: Dancing

What the doctor ordered!


Conservatory at Longwood Gardens

Exactly what the doctor ordered! Fragrance, green-green-green, brilliant flowering shrubs and flowers, the sound of water dripping, running along the stream and falling over small falls. Orchid Extravaganza. Organ music in the ballroom. Lunch in the café. And more photos–see below. Read the rest of this entry »

she peeks through bamboo

Sunshine in Longwood Children's Garden

she peeks through bamboo

sparkling eyes smiling coyly –

golden locks waving

* * * * *

She’s calling to me!

I can’t resist!

I’ve been too long Read the rest of this entry »

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