San Antonio Botanical Garden

After SABotanicalMay16.1leaving the Japanese Tea Garden, my plan was to enter Brackenridge Park and walk along one of the trails that cut across the park towards the San Antonio Botanical Gardens. My first thought was to try the far end of the parking lot but finding no evidence of a walkway there, I turned back towards the concession building/gift shop to ask directions. Unfortunately, the person at the shop could not answer my question, so I headed outside to explore around the building. I saw a walkway on the far side of the river but could find no way to get there. Then I spotted the red caution tape that was blocking access to the trail. The rains that had come through the day before had caused the river to overflow, thus causing the closure of my shortcut to the gardens. SABotanicalMay16.2Plan B was to walk to the nearest bus stop and catch the next bus to the gardens. I was just a short distance from said bus stop when the #7 passed me by. Since the next bus would not appear for another hour, I decided to walk the 2 miles around the park to the gardens.

Once at the Botanical Garden, I decided to fortify myself at the SABotanicalMay16.5Carriage House Bistro before setting out to explore. Immediately beyond the entrance, I found Formal Gardens, Rose Gardens and open spaces of lawn that are typical of most gardens. But as I left this part of the park behind me, I discovered some whimsical sculptures on display, entitled Storybook Houses. I was particularly amused by the colorful balloon structure that represented Dr. Seuss’ Oh the Places You Will Go.  Nearby, was a play area with over-sized Adirondack chairs and picnic tables; even an adult would feel tiny sitting in one of those chairs.

I wandered towards the back end of the gardens and discovered three separate areas representing vegetation found in East Texas, South Texas and the Hill Country. SABotanicalMay16.3Each area also included a structure typically found in that region. Meandering through the Hill Country, I looked across a meadow of grasses and wildflowers. Near one of the structures found in the Hill Country, I found a Passion Flower in full bloom and paused to admire its intricate design.

Walking along the trails through the East Texas section, I found a ball like object made of twigs lying on the ground. I had SABotanicalMay16.4observed that many of the trees around San Antonio were filled with them and I guessed that they were akin to the lichen that covers some trees in the northeast. Here I had the opportunity to study it close up and when I researched this object later, I discovered that it was called Ball Moss.

Finishing my exploration of the cacti and yucca plants of South Texas, I returned to the formal gardens. I eventually found a peaceful area by a fountain that allowed me to enjoy the views for a while before continuing towards the entrance. Just outside the garden was the bus stop that would take me back to town. Feeling that I could not walk another step, I sat on a bench and watched a small lizard while I waited for my ride.

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