Thursday Thoughts – Flowers at Charles University

More flowers from the small botanical garden in Prague city. I can recommend a visit if you are in Prague!

Dracaena Draco

As we did not manage to walk the whole garden before dark, we returned the next day. I knew there was a Dracaena Draco path on the steep slopes – I just had to walk it!

I have always been fascinated by the Dragon tree, and many  years ago I went to Icod de los Vinos, Tenerife, to see the ancient Draco, 22 meters high and trunk diameter 10meters. The inhabitants here call it El Drago Milenario: the Thousand-Year-Old Dragon.

On the ground, under Draco’s canopy, I picked 5 possible new trees…planted them at home, and – they grew up to beautiful little trees all of them. I gave away all except one. I cared for it lovingly for many years, but when it was about 1.50 meters high, a Swedish summer killed it. Too much rain made the top fall off, rotten. The tree never  recovered.

So, in the the botanical garden, on the steep slopes of the Barranco de Guiniguada, Gran Canaria, I picked another 7 possible Dracaena draco. Hopefully some of them will start growing…and I will keep them away from the Swedish summer rains…

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And the reward for returning here this day was…

…all I could ask for!


Jardin Canario

Establishing this botanical garden was the life work of the Swedish-Spanish botanist Erik Ragnar Svensson (1910–1973), who searched – and found – the optimal site for this garden, one that could successfully accommodate many of the diverse plant species of the Canary Islands. The garden was layed out in Tafira Alta, near Las Palmas, and the Jardín Botánico Canario Viera y Clavijo was officially opened in 1959. Svensson (Sventenius) served as its first director. When he died in a traffic accident in 1973, David Bramwell was appointed his successor in 1974.



According to Wikipedia, the garden comprises approximately 27 acres (10 hectares), on which approximately 500 plant species endemic to the Canary Islands are cultivated. Important divisions are the ”Garden of the Islands” (Jardín de las Islas), the ”Garden of Cacti and Succulents” (Jardín de Cactus y Suculentas), where approximately 10,000 cultivars of succulents are on display, the ”Macaronesian Ornamental Garden” (Jardín Macaronésico Ornamental), and the “Hidden Garden” (El Jardín Escondido) with greenhouse. Also worthy of mention are the pinetum (El Pínar) and the ”Laurel-leaved Forests” (Bosque de Laurísílva), featuring trees which once covered most of Macaronesia prior to Spanish settlement. At the ”Fountain of the Wisemen” (La Fuente de Los Sabios), botanists who discovered and described the flora of the Canary Islands are honored.

But we will remain in the impressive garden of cacti and succulents. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did! The last tree in this gallery is a gigantic ficus.





A Walk In the Cactus Garden

In fact maybe the most astonishing one I have ever seen – and I visit in every country and every city I go…But this particular garden is very well thought through, which shows in its architecture and its natural environment. (It was a Swede that started it, Sventonius.)

So, the Canary Islands’ Botanical Garden, situated just west of Las Palmas, in Tafira Baja, is well worth a visit – and not just because of its cactus garden. Let us go, tomorrow!


The Botanical garden in Madrid – again

I often visit the botanical garden in Madrid – in fact it is almost once a year nowadays. Come walk with me in this fragrant spring evening!

Callistemon – a favourite of mine. I once brought one home from Nepal, many years ago, but it died during one of my travels. Not easy for my mother to take care of…

You don’t necessarily need flowers to see the beauty.

The tiniest ones are enough too…

Allium is truly irresistable. Beautifully displayed against a dark background.

Yellow and red is wild and enigmatic together in this Caesalpinia Gilliesii.

This little one had no name – but glowed in the shadows.

…together with Yellow fire…

Lovely ”needles” everywhere.

The tiniest – allium and others.

And more. White poppies and Callistemon in all their glory.

# 218 Paraply – Umbrella (166/365)

This beauty was hanging in the Botanical Gardens of Madrid.

I regret not buying it…