Posted by: lornasass | March 5, 2009

WHAT IS A GARDEN?

On Tuesday night, I began a course in the history of landscape gardening at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.  We spent most of the first session pondering the question “What is a Garden?” and wondering aloud what might be the difference between a garden, a park, and a landscape.  How does one distinguish between an indoor and an outdoor garden?   What kind of garden was Eden?  Is Paradise a garden?

On some level, who cares?

But the question is fun for me to think about and was on my mind when my guides-in-training class visited the Aquatic House at the BBG this morning.  We passed through a door and the air was hot and humid, perfect for the plants that love to grow in water and moist environments like swamps and bogs.  As soon as I entered, I felt transported by the sound of the small waterfall in the deep pool.

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I was fascinated by the staghorn fern hanging from the ceiling.

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I was enchanted by the beauty of the Sarracena purpurea in the swampy bog, its design perfect for capturing unsuspecting insects and eating them alive.

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And then there were dozens and dozens of orchids dangling from on high, a number of them in bloom.

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Is this large room called The Aquatic House a garden?   If a garden is a place that has the power to transport, then the answer is yes.


Responses

  1. Beautiful


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