About a week ago, I visited the North Carolina Arboretum as a day trip from Asheville. Despite it being a weekend and holiday (Father’s Day), there were not many people visiting. I guess the average father does not spend his special day surrounded by flowers.
The arboretum had a relatively-small, formal garden section. Coneflowers were some of the most abundant species. This particular, eye-catching variation shown below was called “raspberry”. Aptly named, I think.
The arboretum also had a single-room butterfly greenhouse near the formal gardens, where I found this miniature house. Hidden, whimsical treasures like these can be found all over the arboretum. Also found, but not pictured, were a chandelier and owl sculpture.
The most extensive part of the arboretum is the miles of trails surrounding the gardens. These are maintained superbly, and I got a few miles of hiking in. Most of the trails are forested, and paths can be pretty wide in certain places, such as the walkway below.
You may notice the rhododendrons in bloom here, giving the mostly green and brown landscape a pop of color. I decided to try to take a close-up photograph of the rhododendron flowers once they have fallen to the ground. Below is my best effort, although I wish I had spent a little more time experimenting with different settings and angles.
As I was looking around on the ground, I also saw this bright red mushroom. What a stand-out object in the forest.
Well, those are the photos that I’ve chosen to highlight of the North Carolina Arboretum.
What are some of the other best arboretums in the country? I sure would like to visit some others in the future!