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Posts Tagged ‘Botanical Garden’

Henry Shaw founded the Missouri Botanical Garden in 1859 as his country house and a place to study and display collections of rare plants. It is now the oldest botanical garden in continuous operation in the United States and one of the only gardens to achieve National Historic Landmark status. It is locally known as “Shaw’s Garden” and is a much loved oasis of magnificent gardens.

Every year from February through mid-March the Garden has their orchid show.  This is the only time of the year the vast collection is available for public viewing. Today, the orchid collection is the Garden’s largest living collection, with over 8,000 plants representing some 2,500 species and named varieties.

The current display features a rotation of over 800 orchids from their world-class collection. A Mayan-inspired design was the theme for this year’s show. It is a tropical display infused with an eclectic mix of Mayan-themed accents. There are orchids from the kind I remember as the Mother’s day/Easter corsage orchid you could pick up at the grocery store to exotic hybrids and historic rarities.

Upon entering the display you are greeted by the Stone Warrior. This replicates one of numerous Toltec columns that supported the temple roof at Tula’s Pyramid of  Quetzalcoatl. Created between AD 900 and 1250, it is represented near actual size.

STONE WARRIOR

STONE WARRIOR

The Chac Mool stone replicated the one found at Chichen Itza in Yucatan Mexico. The stone is believed to have been used by Maya high priests to sacrifice their victims by way of removing their beating heart.

CHAC MOOL

CHAC MOOL

Depicted here are the Royal Scribes.  They were important assistants to the royal family. They could read, write, and draw detailed depictions, recording the ancient writing system of their people.

ROYAL SCRIBES

ROYAL SCRIBES

This display was titled girl or goddess. She wears an elaborate headdress reserved for ancient Maya elite.  Men and woman of royal blood were akin to gods and goddesses.

GIRL OR GODDESS

GIRL OR GODDESS

We went on a cold rainy day in the hopes that it wouldn’t be too crowded.  It started out that way but after a short while the crowds picked up, making it more difficult to photography overall displays.

ORCHIDS

ORCHIDS

I thought it was a beautiful show, one of their best.  All the flowers were in such pristine condition, some almost looked artificial they were so perfect. Then there was this beautiful one in a family member’s  favorite color.

'MENDENHALL'

'MENDENHALL'

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