Friday, April 2, 2010

Beautiful Spring Day

Yesterday was a beautiful day in central North Carolina, well all of North Carolina really.  Even though spring was official last week, yesterday was the first day that really FELT like spring.  It was around 75deg, sunny, not a cloud in the sky.  So a friend that I use to work with at my last job and I decided to spend the afternoon together.  She picked me up around 10:30 and went out to lunch.  Then after, with cameras in hand, went to a garden in the center of Durham (well, almost).  The garden was created as a memorial to Sarah P Duke, one of Duke University's benefactors.  It sits on about 55 acres of wooded land and is divided into 4 parts, the Historic Core, H.L. Blomquist Garned of Native Plants, Culberson Asiatic Arboretum, and Page White Garden.  There's roughly 5 miles of walkways through the gardens.  The Asiatic side boasts a large pond which is great for the mallard ducks that reside there.  There is also a cute white bridge that crosses over the narrow end of the pond.  At first it looks like a wooden bridge but as you get closer the base of it is actually concrete but the railings are made of wood that has an Asian feel to them.  See picture below.

The other side, the Historic Core (which I think is known as the Terrace Gardens) is the more formal side of the gardens, and once you see it you will understand why it's called what it is.  It has a lily pond usually with huge lily pads (they were working on it getting it ready for the season when we went) and another small round pond with at brick bridge at the end of it located in the "south lawn".  The landscape is a combination of stone work and softscape set in a radial pattern from the huge tellis in the center of it which whisteria drapes over it when in bloom.  Here's a pic to sort of give you an idea.

I tried to capture the beauty of the gardens as best I could.  There were a lot of people there as it was Easter break for the kids that we didnt think about so it was hard trying to get pictures with no people in it.  We're hopefully going to go back in a couple weeks to see what else is in bloom and we made the decision to go first thing in the morning when it opens up so there's little people there.  It's a wonderful place to just sit and relax at.  Some people come with their dogs, others just sit on the lawns and enjoy the sun and good weather.  A lot of them are students which makes sense that it's right there on Duke grounds.  I've never been to Central Park in NYC but I have to believe the feeling you get from this place would be like going to Central Park.  Stepping into the gardens transports you back in time when things felt simpler and life is slower, it's like a whole other world inside a concrete jungle.  It is recognized as one of the premier gardens I

If you are interested in seeing all my photographs from Duke Gardens please click my little Picasa icon over to the left of the page.  That will take you to my Picasa site that has all my photographs I took over the last couple years when I went somewhere.  If you want to see just this album click here

One note about my photos tho.  There are several photos that aren't worthy (over/under exposed, fuzzy, etc) of posting but I still kept them because they're a learning tool for me for future outings.  So given that Happy Looking.

(Wow, I should be a writer, lol)

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