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Florida Botanical Gardens

>> Sunday, June 7, 2009

Hey everyone! I hope you all have been having a great weekend. Yesterday after work I went on the hunt for that great Botanical Gardens I mentioned in my last post. I did find it and it's so neat. I can't wait to go back with more time so I can get some footage and more pictures. Mom and I got there at around 6:30pm and it closes at 7.

The website for the garden is here. They had butterfly gardens planted as well and I saw lots of really cute bugs and caterpillars everywhere! The plants were marvelous as well and seeing how lovely they gardens were without the use of grass made me dislike lawn grass even more. Besides being a waste of LOTS of water, it's not really useful for any of the wildlife here in Florida.

Fig. 1 Battus polydamus caterpillar on pipevine

The above caterpillar is easily the biggest caterpillar (not longest) I have ever seen. He was fatter than a really big cigar! The common name is the Gold Rim and it is a lovely butterfly. It is the only tailless swallowtail butterfly in North America. The species is also unique in that the chrysalis will be different colors depending on where it pupates. If it pupates near a leaf, the chrysalis will usually be green. If it pupates near a dead leaf or vine, it will usually be brown.

Fig. 2 Southern Lubber Grasshopper Romalea guttata

I also saw this really beautiful grasshopper. It is a flightless grasshopper and also one of the most colorful in Florida. It is occasionally a pest to daylillies and citrus.

I can't wait to go spend more time at the Botanical Gardens. I only went to a very small portion of the 183 acres. Not too much time to see much when you go 1/2 hour before closing. See you guys soon.


wendy June 7, 2009 at 9:23 PM  

Eeks! You only had half an hour??  Oh well, now you can go back.  I love gardens of all kinds.  Thanks for the pics - grasshopers are fun.  I used to watch them as a kid and still do!!

Marizela M. Zambrano June 9, 2009 at 2:27 PM  

Yeah... we ran through and hardly saw a corner of it! At least I knwo where it is now!

Jeanne June 13, 2009 at 1:08 AM  

I'm glad you got to spend more time at the Botanical Gardens.  :)
Those pictures were really cool.  I love how excited you sound about exploring at the Botanical Gardens.
Take care,

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