Vancouver – Day 2

Douglas Justice educating our group about botany, geology, history, and even our own North Carolina plants.

Douglas Justice educating our group about botany, geology, history, and even our own North Carolina plants.

One of my absolute favorite gardens in the world is the fantastic collection at the University of British Columbia Botanic Garden.  The heart of the garden is the Asian collection which is presented as a woodland garden with plants growing naturally and a fantastic display of vines climbing through the trees.  Our group was very lucky that Douglas Justice, associate director, was available and willing to give us a tour.

UBC's famous specimen of Carpinus fangiana, newly christened 'Wharton's Choice'.

UBC’s famous specimen of Carpinus fangiana, newly christened ‘Wharton’s Choice’.

Douglas led us through the Asian collection, Carolinian forest, Alpine garden, and Edible garden.  His 3-hour tour was one of the best I’ve ever had and the rest of the group echoed that sentiment.  The collection, as always, was an education for me with new plants around every corner and all displayed under majestic native conifers.

Ilex elmerrilliana was new to me.

Ilex elmerrilliana was new to me.

Paris polyphylla var. polyphylla growing lusher than I've ever seen it before.

Paris polyphylla var. polyphylla growing lusher than I’ve ever seen it before.

After a leisurely lunch at Vancouver’s famous Fish House, we explored Stanley Park which is situated just north of the hotel on a point of land.  Stanley Park is celebrating its 125th anniversary and the gardens looked great.  There were some surprisingly spectacular perennial and mixed borders as well as some fantastic annual displays.

Gorgeous borders at Stanley Park.

Gorgeous borders at Stanley Park.

Stanley Park is celebrating its 125th anniversary.

Stanley Park is celebrating its 125th anniversary.

The backdrop of conifers makes every view even better.

The backdrop of conifers makes every view even better.

Marty Howard standing beneath a weeping Sequoiadendron.

Marty Howard standing beneath a weeping Sequoiadendron.

First Nations totem poles

First Nations totem poles

One of the highlights of the park are some authentic First Nations totems.  Each carving tells a story or describes a lineage of a family.

Follow me at @jcramark because life is too short for boring plants.

A good looking group at the First Nations totem poles.

A good looking group at the First Nations totem poles.

Check out all the happenings at http://www.ncsu.edu/jcraulstonarboretum

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