Saturday August 6, 2016

Nehrling Gardens

Category: Uncategorized — Ian C. @ 10:58 am

We visited a local “historic gardens” today; Nehrling Gardens created at the end of the 19th century by Henry Nehrling – he came to Florida from Wisconsin because he wanted a year round garden!

He apparently specialized in Caladium plants, and the garden trust is slowly re-establishing a variety of them but for now they are not as impressive as they must once have been:

He built a home on a small part of the 40 acre lot that he purchased; that lot has been divided many times since, but the home is still in the gardens:

Most impressive to me were the Bamboo plants; one cluster (“Golden Bamboo” – second and third picture) was huge!

Also impressive how fungus is taking over dead wood:

The Gardens are also less than a mile from a great BBQ place, Yellow Dog Eats, so of course we finished our visit with lunch there:

Friday July 15, 2016

Disney Springs

Category: DisneyWorld — Ian C. @ 5:03 pm

Over the last few years the Downtown Disney shopping area has been massively rebuilt; for most of that time we refused to go there because it was so chaotic – early Disney activities removed many parking areas and created nothing except traffic jams! But finally now there is some finishing – there are now two multi-level parking garages, although still today the entrance we used to the new “lime” garage was poorly designed, leading us to only three of five possible levels with those three being almost full while the last two remain empty!
Still, from the top level of the garage, it’s possible now to get a good overview, including the nice landscaping near the new bus transfer station area:

From the same top level, a view of all the new shopping – back view, at least! There’s loads of newly opened stores there, none of them are Disney related and none of them hold any interest for us (I can’t imagine many Disney tourists have any interest either!):

Further into Disney Springs there are MANY new restaurants and other food choices – many are very expensive ($30-$40 entrees) but still there’s some interesting possibilities. We were very attracted to the new Amorette’s Patisserie:

We also went up to the top floor “bar” of the new Coca Cola store, via it’s very strange multi floor ramp walk that goes around the outside of the building – another great view there, though the transparent walls make it scary!

We’ll surely be back, but I think we’ll still need to be careful to avoid busy times since the new area still needs more improvement to traffic flow …

Sunday July 3, 2016

Independence at Independence

Category: Independence — Ian C. @ 7:30 am

Ready for Independence Day this year, we’ve put up a United States flag on our home. We had to buy quite a large flag!

Also, our Independence community had it’s Independence fireworks last night; perhaps less spectacular than those of nearby Disney, but better in many ways because we were so close to the display (which therefore included occasional showers of warm embers) – and there was no queueing to leave … Here’s a short video sample: