There were yellows, reds and greens in abundance on this warm spring day in March, and the dramatic showy inflorescecne of the bromeliads complemented the more delicate and complicated statements by the orchids. As the days pass and seasons change, different plants burst into bloom, so a visit to the Garden always holds something new.
These are two of over 3,000 species of bromeliads, a family that includes plants as diverse as spanish moss, the air plant well known by indoor gardeners, and the pineapple. Many, such as the spanish moss, are epiphytes that can subsist on nutrients in the air, rain and debris that fall around them, and do not need to be rooted to the ground. Others, like the pineapple are more terrestrial and do better rooted to the earth.
The variety of shapes and colors in these tropical plants is a dazzling reminder of the beauty around us — beauty that can bring balance into our lives if only we choose to look.
This bromeliad was growing in a friend’s garden. It’s not a perfect specimen, but the colors, the bit of water still held in the center, and the curve of the leaves all drew my attention as an illustration of the imperfect beauty available at our feet every day, if we only take time to look.
We no longer trust beauty as a serious means of investigation. But it can be ... In fact, beauty can be incendiary; it can be subversive; it can make us cringe.
-- David Maisel, Photographer
"It is the function of art to renew our perception. What we are familiar with we cease to see. The writer shakes up the familiar scene, and, as if by magic, we see a new meaning in it." -- Anais Nin
“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders of the universe, the less taste we shall have for the destruction of our race.” -- Rachel Carson