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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Colours of Summer

What's It Wednesday #31

In addition to enjoying indoor vintage urban design in the home, I absolutely adore the outdoor designs created by nature. Come join me on my many summer journeys.

The Amazonian Zebra plant is a gorgeous bromeliad in the yard or in nature. 

Bromeliads placed on a large tree branch are a fun way to grow them in the yard. There are over 5000 species of bromeliads and I love the variety of colour. I have to admit though, my favorite bromeliad is the pineapple. 

My quest for beautiful colours of summer takes me to many wonderful places during this time. One of my favorite hangouts is Everglades National Park. This Cabbage Palm, also known as the Sabal Palm, is the official state tree for the state of Florida. I found this beauty as I was hiking through a wonderful tropical hammock a few days ago. 

Although I am not crazy about cactus, I find this one in particular fascinating and is my absolute favorite. This lovely fellow resides in Fort Jefferson in the Dry Tortugas, which is located about 70 miles west of Key West. I imagine a bird leaving the seedling on the island as it was in transit. The seed grew into this beauty that grows along the walls of this amazing fort. 

During my summer hikes I found this beautiful button bush blooms. The blooms look like wonderful pen cushions.

After a trip to Maui, I told my husband that gingers were a must in our garden. I think they are quite romantic.

Cycads are one of the most ancient of plants on planet Earth. These hardy fellows were around during the days of the dinosaurs. I love them because they are extremely hardy and resist most pests and diseases.

The scientist in me allows the princess in me to venture out and hike in the swamps of Big Cypress Natural Preserve. I am absolutely fascinated by these cypress knees. Cypress knees is a term used to describe these structures that form near the base of beautiful cypress trees. Although their true function is unknown it is thought that perhaps their structure is used to oxygenate the roots of the large cypress trees. 

Viewing these majestic cypress trees are well worth the fight through the mosquitoes and sweltering heat. 

Some times hanging out in nature yields wonderful design ideas. These epiphytes were perfectly arranged on this large branch and adds just the right amount of texture. I think I will do the same in my yard.

Nature has a way of adding just the right colour for the garden. This inflorescence looked wonderful in a national park so I figured it would be a perfect fit in the yard. I love being inspired by nature. Don't you?

Although the air plant to the tree is fascinating my love is for the  whitish, green patches on the tree.  It's actually not a part of the bark at all. These are lichen which is a combination of fungi and algae. It natures own graffiti of color. 

The central part of the state of Florida is known for it's majestic live oaks. My favorite part of these gorgeous trees are the moss that swing gently in the summer breeze. 

Heliconias come in up to 200 species and all of them are just gorgeous. The colours vary like the rainbow and their structures are natures perfect design. 

This mangrove is one of many that belong to the 10,000 Islands of South Florida's west coast. 

Even some of the insects of summer add wonderful colour to a garden. This Milkweed bug dines on the blooms of the Milkweed plant. 

I enjoy the beautiful orchids found in the wild that I encounter on my weekly summer hikes. Warm humid environments are the perfect place for these beauties to thrive. I also enjoy them in a private garden. There are so many beautiful varieties, you can never become bored of them. 


Staghorns are the king of the garden and are my favorite fern. They are so strong and appear to be quite regal in the garden and in the wild. They aren't very picky, they will grow on a tree or a rock.

This beauty is my favorite lily. The alligator lily is also known as the spider lily. Although I cannot grow them in my yard, I can visit them in their own habitat which is in the outer edges of cypress swamps. When this fragrant flower blooms, I know summer is here.  

What is your favorite summer flower, bush, or tree and where do you find it?


Thank you all for participating in our "What's It Wednesday"  linky party!

Don't forget to grab a feature button.

Ivy and Elephants

 Thank you all for all that you do to inspire others!
 I know I am inspired each and every week by each and every one of you.

Here are this week's WONDERFUL  features
This vintage tub over at Chateau Chic is the perfect addition to any garden. 

You must visit Mile High Beach at Creating Wonderful Places

This stair and bannister is an amazing transformation over at Decor Niche

It is Summer Time over at Shabby Sweet Cottage

Nothing says summer like a beautiful peony from The Headmistress

This card catalogue redo is a must see at West Furniture Revival


NanaDiana said...

My gosh- What beautiful, lush, tropical looking plants/photos- Gorgeous- xo Diana

The White Pear Tree said...

Oh wow, those are all in your "neck of the woods"? How stunning and gorgeous! I have been to Florida several times, but have not seen anything this beautiful!

Wonderful pictures.

The Porcelain Rose said...

Linking with you for What's It Wednesday! Your photos are amazing!!! Stunning! I had to go back at look at them again.
Thanks for sharing.
The Porcelain Rose

SwedishCorner ~ DownUnder...Pernilla said...

Beautiful looking plants!
Thanks for hosting :)
Greetings from Australia♥

Unknown said...

Thanks for hosting! Am now following! Would you mind following me back?

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Beautiful plants and Blooms!

Thanks so much for hosting!


Lee Caroline - A World of Inspiration said...

Thank you for hosting the party. You have some amazing flowers in Florida, so very tropical. Here I am sitting in the cold wet winter of New Zealand while your basking in sunshine, I am so jealous!

Lee ☺

Scrappy Pink Corner said...

All the plants are gorgeous. And the flowers are to die for. Us Floridians are lucky to have such beauties all around us and almost all year round. Your photos are great. TFS. Ana

Susie said...

Paula, Thank you for the trip thru the tropical gardens. Nice to see plants that we can grow here in Indiana. Enjoy your day. Smiles to you, Susie

Rose Jesky said...

Those pictures are beautiful!!! Thanks for hosting today,

Liz @ Quirky Vistas said...

Those button bush blooms are so cool. I've never seen those before, as are the orchids that dangled down. Very beautiful. Thanks for sharing the view from your hikes. You are a trooper to head out in the heat and amongst the bugs. Thanks for hosting another fun party too!

must love junk said...

Such gorgeous flowers/plants! Thanks so much for hosting :)

Carlene @ Organized Clutter said...

I can honestly say that I don't have any of your plants in my floer garden. Very fun plants! I have had some as houseplants though.

chateau chic said...

Thank you so much for featuring my post from last week. I appreciate you all hosting this party each week.
Your photos of tropical plants are amazing!
Mary Alice

Cottage and Broome said...

So many beautiful tropical plants that we don't have up here in the north!! Thanks for hosting, Laura

Curtains in My Tree said...

Southern Florida is just a tropical paradise I have never been to key West

I have always liked the moss on the trees and my first time experiencing it I tried to put it in my car trunk , bad idea LOL

Poppy @ With a Dash of Color said...

Beautiful pictures of tropical plants! I love the picture of the oaks with moss hanging from majestic! And the cactus growing against the wall is stunning! Gorgeous pictures! Thanks for sharing and for the party. Hugs,Poppy

Cindy Adkins said...

Nice photos of some very unusual plants! Thanks for hosting. I'm having a giveaway, so I hope you'll come by and enter!
Hugs, Cindy

Karen said...

Those are all beautiful plants. I didn't know staghorn ferns grew on rocks and trees. I always learn something here. Thanks so much for the feature, its an honor to be in such great company. Thanks for hosting!

Julie Marie said...

Oh my goodness Paula!... these are all so stunning!... I love each and every one of them... I have a cypress knee my grandmother gave me years ago from a trip to the south... I put it out when she gave it to me so many years ago, and it has stayed in our home ever since... I had not heard of many of the beauties you have shown, thanks for sharing... you truly live in a most enchanted place, close to so many beautiful spots in Nature... xoxo Julie Marie (Hello Patti!)

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Paula, I grew up in Florida and all these pictures remind me of home. Thanks so much for hosting.

Anne said...

I have family in Florida.And when visiting I always enjoying all those beautiful tropical plants.I love all those palms and that moss tree is simply gorgeous!Thank you for hosting.Have a great day!

loveolympiajune said...

Thanks for hosting! Have a great week! :)

~Stephanie @loveolympiajune

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

Beautiful photos Paula! Thanks so much for hosting!

Nellie's Cozy Place said...

Hi Paula,
Saw your blog on someone elses blog
and decided to check you out, and saw
you had a linky party going on so decided to join you for the first time.
Loved your post cause I just am incredibly fascinated by God's beauty
in creation, lovely, lovely pictures.

Jillian's Bella Rosa Antiques said...

joining the party today! Your colors of summer are amazing! We do not have beautiful flowers like you do up here in the north woods. :0)

Lovely post as usual!

Rooms by Ann said...

Those are some very beautiful pictures of the different plants. Thanks for sharing.

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

You have some beautiful and unusual flowers, Paula. Thanks for hosting.

Jeannie Marie said...

As a new resident of Florida I am particularly interested in all the native flowers and foliage. Loved this post!

Laurel Stephens said...

Thank you for your kind comment on my Pedestal Birdhouse Bath post, Paula. I'm so pleased to join your wonderful party! Thanks for including me.

Erin~Just*Grand said...

Thanks for hosting! Lots of great posts to visit and be inspired by!

Jana@Transformations From the Heart said...

Thanks so much for coming over to my blog and leaving a sweet compliment on my Anthro Inspired Coat rack and inviting me to join your party.

Thrilled to be here.
Thanks for hosting!
BTW-Beautiful photos of all the plants, some really unusual ones that I've not seen before. Really enjoyed viewing them.

June said...

Isn't Mother Nature amazing Paula? Your photos are beautiful!!!

Sherry said...

Thank you for featuring my refinished staircase and your kind comments! I love your Colors of Summer the pictures are beautiful! As always - thank you for hosting. Have a great week - enjoy!!!

The Tablescaper said...

So neat. So lush and tropical.

- The Tablescaper

Honey at 2805 said...

Hi Ladies! Such beautiful plants and photography, and always so much's terrific!

Thanks so much for the welcome back!

Diann said...

What beautiful photos! That Alligator Lily is so unique and pretty! Thank you for hosting and have a wonderful day!

Unknown said...

thanks so much for featuring my card catalog, ill be doing a shout out to you on my blog, and just wanted to tell you your pictures are beautiful!
great eye!

Unknown said...

thanks so much for featuring my card catalog, ill be doing a shout out to you on my blog, and just wanted to tell you your pictures are beautiful!
great eye!

Joanne | a.k.a JoJo said...

drooling over your images.... gorgeousness!

thanks for hosting!


Joanne | a.k.a JoJo said...

drooling over your images... gorgeousness!

thanks for hosting!


Brandi said...

Your photos are gorgeous! Thank you for sharing.

Patty said...

Yes, as the others have said your photos are simply amazing! Thanks for sharing and hosting this linky party. This is my first visit and am following you now.

Debra@CommonGround said...

Hi Gals just linked up, what amazing photos!! thanks for hosting!

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Thanks so much for hosting!!

So many pretty blooms!!


Johanna Gehrlein said...

Hi Paula,
this is a great collection of exotic plants photos. Love to see them all. They really means summer for me. Thank you for sharing them and for hosting this event.
Greetings to you and Patti,

joetterer said...

Wow, that's some crazy exotic stuff. Looks like it's from Mars! Thanks for the linky party!

The Liberty Belle said...

Such nice photographs!

Diann said...

Back to say Thank you for sharing this with us at TTF. I hope you have a fantastic day!

Anonymous said...

Love the tour! Thanks so much, your inner scientist speaks to my inner scientist.


Honey at 2805 said...

Thank you for sharing this lovely post at Potpourri Friday!

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

What a BEAUTIFUL tour that was.. Thank you so much for taking me along.. Images are breathtaking!

Unknown said...

Merci pour ce beau voyage parmi les plantes tropicales. J'aime beaucoup.

Pamela said...

Thank you for inviting me to your party. From my blog you can tell I love gardens and plants so I don't need to tell you how much I enjoyed this post and I wanted to say thank you. I did finally join the party, I am late but it has been a crazy few days....good, but crazy busy.

Palomasea said...

Well, dear Paula, we certainly do not have these exotic beauties in MN, but I love visiting the conservatory and tropical gardens!
I love the Spanish moss...and all of the fascinating, diverse species.
The bright colors! wow...
How amazing, stunning, magical nature is....
Thank you so much for this inspirational tour!
- Irina

Sharon said...

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such wonderful comments! Also it is an honor to be asked to link up to your thanks so much for that! I just linked up...and now must go check out what everyone else is up to!

Diane | An Extraordinary Day said...

What a lovely botanical travel log! The best inspiration always comes from nature. :D

Next on my journey here at Ivy & Elephants is to check out the linky party. Thanks for the invite!

Diane | An Extraordinary Day said...

Oh...I wanted to know what the plant was (above the Staghorn Fern) with the rainfall of colorful blossoms that reminded me of tiny Tucan beaks?
What a fun plant!

Unknown said...

I love your pictures, thank you so much for inviting me over! Just linked up and thank you for hosting :) My favorite flowers....I live in Washington State and the hydrangeas are amazing here. Hugs, Tanya :)

very merry vintage style said...

Such beautiful plants! Have a fabulous 4th and thanks for linking up to Share the Love Wednesday!

Zorrie said...

I just joined your link party! Exciting because I'm new to this whole thing!!

I'm following you now, would love if you follwed me! :)


Kathy said...

Wow! Love these tropical plants! We have just a few up here in Georgia - but not much to compare to this variety! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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