As gardeners Kim and I of course wanted to see some gardens during our week on Kauai.
The Na'Aina Kai Botanical Garden is well worth the visit. Although the garden is shown only through guided tours which are not my cup of tea, the variety of plants was wonderful to see. Our tour lasted around three hours with our guide talking pretty much non-stop. She was full of great info but it was also a bit overwhelming.
I was amazed to see cacti on a Hawaiian Island. Cacti in Hawaii? Really? I would never have guessed.
Our Kauai guidebook describes the garden as "240 acres including over 100 acres of a tropical hardwood plantation with nearly two dozen types of trees. In the heart of the property several theme gardens specialize in various types of plants, and throughout the gardens some 60 life-like bronze sculptures add a playful touch."
From Hawaii.com; "Joyce and Ed Doty retired to Kauai from their ranch in Northern California in 1982. What was begun as a landscape project in their front yard has grown to 240 acres that have been developed into a myriad of diverse gardens, complete with one of the largest collections of bronze sculpture in the United States."
I could have done without most of the sculptures as they were of children. (what is it with me, not enjoying sculptures of children of all things? But I just don't.)
I did enjoy a few of the sculptures.
Much of the garden was simply breathtaking.
What an undertaking by this couple. You really have to admire their hard work and dedication. The gardens were full of imagination and ingenuity.
The variety of plants was simply amazing. This is a silk floss tree (Ceiba speciosa) or Monkey No Climb.
From Wikipedia: "It is resistant to drought and moderate cold. It grows fast in spurts when water is abundant, and sometimes reaches more than 25 m in height. Its trunk is bottle-shaped, generally bulging in its lower third, measuring up to 2 m in girth. It is studded with thick conical prickles which serve to store water for dry times. In younger trees, the trunk is green due to its high chlorophyll content, which makes it capable of performing photosynthesis when leaves are absent; with age it turns to gray."
This is a flower from a Jade Vine. You can learn all about them at Tatyana's blog as she recently also visited Kauai.
We were fortunate to be able to view pairs of Laysan albatross close up. They are one of the largest seabirds seen in Hawaii with a wingspan of nearly 7 feet. They lay a single egg during the annual nesting season. Both parents take turns incubating the egg and feeding the chick.
Gorgeous, aren't they?
The newest themed garden is based on food; meals to be specific. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. They are including plants such as coffee, cocoa, lemon trees, you get the idea.
This statue has a trellis of honeysuckle growing behind it. Kind of cute, don't you think?
Next post I'll show you another garden on Kauai.