World Gardens: Phuket part 1

My family have learnt, that wherever we are, if there is a botanic garden in the vicinity, we will have to visit it.  What we haven’t quite learnt yet is that we should check the opening hours before we go. . .

We chose to visit Phuket botanic gardens near the end of our holiday in Thailand last year. It was another lovely hot day and we had spent 45minutes driving through busy traffic to find this.

One in seven chance !

One in seven chance !

I won’t repeat some of the things that were said! Luckily for me, though, there were plenty of other sights to visit in the area.  However, having tasted the possibility of all those wonderful plants, I couldn’t leave these gardens and so I dragged everyone back the next day too.

It was well worth the effort. The gardens were lovely.

As expected they were very lush with lots of interesting plants and flowers frequented by wonderful butterflies and rather shy birds.

black butterfly

They had done a good job of making the gardens interesting with areas of particular plant groups mixed with areas of more educational interest. Unfortunately we couldn’t learn much from the Thai labelling, but we did have a laugh at some of the translations.

self sufficient garden

Should this be self sufficient garden?

The first area we came to contained carnivorous plants together with air feeding plants (epiphytes?)

Some of the specimens were magnificent – well they do have the climate for it.

Pitcher Plant

Nepenthes raffisiana (Pitcher Plant)

air plant

An air plant nailed to a tree.

Water features and statues were used throughout the garden to create a truly tropical affect.

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They were clearly proud of all the vegetables and spices that are used in Thai cooking.

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Lemon Grass, Ginger,Ghalangal,Chillies,

Finger root, Lemon Grass, Ginger,Galangal,Chillies and two unknowns – any ideas?

Other plants were grown for their fruit ; many trees had artificial fruit hanging on the branches so you could always see what they looked like. However, in some cases it wasn’t always easy to tell the real fruit from the artificial ones.

Rose apple tree with both real and artificial fruit

Rose apple tree with both real and artificial fruit

Editor’s note (aka The Traveller): Why are they called Rose Apples when they are clearly pears? 

Real Rose Apples

Real Rose Apples.

The Rose Apple fruit, which is pink when ripe, is supposed to be very crisp and refreshing. It looks like someone has pinched a couple of these.

One of my favourite areas was the fern garden.

fern

 

Widow's spike fern

Widow’s spike fern

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Unfortunately not many of them had labels but you can recognise some favourite house plants.

I would have stayed longer in this garden, but there was so much more to see.

Coming next: the Orchid House and the English Garden.

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9 thoughts on “World Gardens: Phuket part 1

  1. I agree, love the fern garden. My neighbor has a Rose Apple, the fruit tastes like rose scented Jicama but is not as crisp.

    I think we were writing about birds? I saw a Bald Eagle fly over today – fantastic!

    • They are very pretty fruit, but I had no idea what Jicama is or tastes like I’m afraid. I had to look it up on Google! I love learning all these random things from blogging.
      Lucky you seeing a Bald Eagle. I saw one in Canada once.

      • Jicama is, to the best of my knowledge, a Mexican root vegetable with very little taste. I like Jicama and apple slaw (regular apples)with poppy seed dressing. I have eaten Jicama and the closest comparison to me would be water chestnuts. Rose Apples are similar, very little taste with a rose scent.
        My neighbor and I were fascinated that a lady from our postal service, who was from the Caribbean, stopped by, picked the fallen Rose Apples up and then did something with them?? A Caribbean secret.
        I researched these trees a bit and they grow in other tropical places like Peru and Thailand – the soil may make the fruit more palatable than here?!
        Love these random blogging things as well..

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