Hello from Queen Viktoria in Münich

Viktoria plant in Nymphenburg Palace gardens in Münich

No, I´ve never met the Queen of England, though I would love to say Hello to her if I´m given the chance. On the other hand, I am a certified fan of Queen, of Freddie Mercury´s music, especially his Live-Aid performance, I can´t get enough of it: I have watched it actually a million times.

But then, this Post is not really about the Queen, although…

I´ve met a very special living thing, a couple of months ago. Her name is Viktoria, spelled with K in German and with C in English. She is not like my everyday normal green friend like my Monstera Deliciosa or my Pilea Peperomioides, but rather a special one, a rare breed of a kind.Münich is the place we´ve met and throughout the entire time, I can´t take my eyes off from her.

Look at her huge leaves, like huge Paella pans, I mean even more bigger than that.Viktoria plants are really one of a kind wonder. Have you heard that they can stand a weight of 2 human beings?!You´ve got to see what´s under it´s leaf, it´s an example of nature wonder.

How on earth do they keep on floating? Not an exaggeration but it´s leaves are perfect in diameter, the radius is exact in perfection…

Coming from the family of Water lilies, Nympaeaceae, even their names are too hard to spell and remember.As a kid, I have seen a lot of water lilies, but not this type. I´ve seen them as quite fascinating for a plant. The common ones I played in the little pond of my Grandmother. We would poked the leaves for us to clearly see the giant Kois and golden fishes, the waterlilies are just sidekicks.

Never I have seen such a wide-leafed variety. Certain type can be 3 metres (9.8 ft) in diameter, on a stalk up to 8 metres (26 ft) in length!

I mean , I thought the Anahaw palm (Saribus rotundifolius) can be that wide, around 1,2meters, enough to cover your head like an umbrella when it rains, but this one is even huge, aide from the fact that its floating! They say a baby can even sit on top of it ?…I wonder if it´s true though… but Wikipedia helped me to confirm this.

Round beauties swimming and floating

The leaf of Victoria is able to support quite a large weight due to the plant’s structure, although the leaf itself is quite delicate: so much so that “a straw held 6 inches above and dropped perpendicularly upon it would readily pass through it”.[3] To counter the fragile nature of the leaf, the weight needs to be distributed across the surface through mechanical means, such as a sheet of plywood. This allows the leaf to support up to 32 kilograms (71 lb).”

Amazing, right!??? But hey, would you risk putting a baby on top of it?

This types were coincidentally named after Queen Victoria of England.Which made me wonder if they have some Victoria plants in Buckingham palace.Well at least right here in Nymphenburg Palace in Münich, they have lots of Viktorias! They lie flat on the water, have an upturned hem and on the underside a network of strong, prickly and air-filled ribs. A toddler can easily sit on a sheet of paper. My favourite so far is the green one with an upturned hem, the Viktoria Amazonica, the largest of water lily species in the world and a native from the Amazon River basin. No wonder, it´s kinda exotic and wild.

Something about them that really fascinated me. Again, I seek the help of Wikipedia, the lily, with ribbed undersurface and leaves veining “like transverse girders and supports”, was Paxton’s inspiration for The Crystal Palace, a building four times the size of  St. Peter´s in Rome.

My visit was even made fabulous when I´ve met some more of the exotic flowers in the Viktoriahaus. I don´t really remember their names, but they all look weird, crazy and exquisitely beautiful.Do you know any of them ?

She looks rather coming from the Genus of Hibiscus, I am kinda familiar with her look.
They all look like tiny hungry mouths, waiting to be fed.
She just dangles and entertain us

What´s the most exotic plant you´ve ever seen?

This Post is inspired by Cee´s Flower of the Day Challenge

FOTD : Mums the choice.

Finally, I have a day free to take a look in the garden! In German we call it ” Endlich!!”

After tidying up the porch and clearing the mess of fallen leaves, I had to admire and see what my Mums are about. Outside is very foggy, grey and cold but not yet freezing but my Mums are in full bloom.Typical German Autumn weather! I don´t know much about these flowers but I guess they are the queen of Autumn flowers.

They are just bursting in colors…lovely, subtle florets that adorn the almost empty garden.

This pot is almost 3 years old. Last year I cut them after the´ve bloomed and now it made it´s second time to bloom. When I bought it ,it was so tiny, but now it grew so big, bushy and gave me so many flowers so I am really happy.

This light orange baby was gifted to me by one of my friend who sells flowers and plant in the weekend market. I was lovestruck when I saw it because it´s like a ball of wonder.I did some Googling and found out that it´s the mid season variety called “Billy Bell”. I love the color and it´s really star in the porch. My plant has 5-6 balls and the petals are so sturdy.

And whites and red are not that bad either.

This post was inspired by Cee´s FOTD Flower of the Day Challenge.

Until then , stay safe everyone! Tschüss!

Life in Colour :Green Obsessions

When I was younger, I am addicted to bags and shoes.I needed different bag for each day and I wanted to wear pretty shoes.I often wear heels at work and I really don´t mind them on my feet.When I got pregnant and had a child, I opt for comfy ones, something that I can run with it and my bags turned into backbacks full of my daughter´s things.

I prefer also large Tote bags and sling bags, since they are so practical , wearable while cycling and when we are always on the run.

But something had changed. I got hooked into plants. Green plants mostly.

I got obsessed with green.Lots of green living plants inside our home.Through time I got to know different kinds of plants.First I saw them online, there are lots of trendy plants in Instagram and I frequently visited garden shops.I think my environment now influence me a lot since a lot of people here, not only expats like me love the urban jungle phenomenon.

It started with one pot, then comes another, then comes another, then the rest is history.Most of these plants are a year younger than my daughter now, so basically, these plant babies ” grew” up with us.We got older, they blossomed, pruned, and had babies as well.

I love being with them and though it´s a lot of work to take care each of them, it makes me happy.I also killed lots of them.I overwatered, I pruned too much, and learned from doing trial and error.I ma overjoyed when I see new leaves, or new sprouts.When my purple Oxalis Triangularis bloomed, I was jumping because they are so pretty. She had so many babies and I already gave away to my friends some of it.Some of my all time favourites are the Monstera Deliciousa, Adansonii, Mother in law tongue or snakeplant, ZZ plant, Fiddle Leaf fig tree, Rubber plant, African Milk tree, Arrowhead, Weeping fig, and Pilea Peperomoiodes.

Now that it´s Spring, my plants are happy to get more sunlight, extra dose of fertilizer and new soil. Some of them got moved into a bigger pot. It´s the planting season so they are really gearing for a new growth spurt.During the pandemic, I noticed that most of my friends, here and abroad have opt to do gardening and getting into plants.I felht good, and I know its really great especially when you have something that you are passionate about.

Besides, growing your own veggies and herbs are really cool. Nothing beats it when you personally grow it.This Spring, I planted carrots, radishes, herbs, paprika and tomatoes. I can´t wait to see them grow and hopefully, land on our plates.

I think living with plants requires a special dedication. It requires patience and hardwork. Maybe people loved only to design their homes with plants, but that also requires attention since plants are living things. You can´t ignore them once you put them in the corner.For me, each plant becomes a treasure.I bought them when they are so small ( I only buy baby plants ) and watching them thrive and grow gives me such happiness.

I frequently visits the library and borrow books about different plants and how to take care of them. Some plants really need special care from the other and that makes sense since every plant has its own personality. I mastered the watering schedule and pruning times, and I become addicted as well of propagating them. I have a big Pothos now and they mostly came from cuttings.

I think aside from painting, I would love to continue taking care of my plants until I can do it.

They are beautiful, cleaning the air we breathe, and they make our tiny home so liveable so I cannot ask for more.

I guess, this is the kind of obsession that I wanna keep.What about yours?

This post is totally inspired by the exciting Life in Colour Challenge hosted by Hey Jude which coincidentally themed with “GREEN” colours.Definitely, for me, green obsession is a kind of life, a lifestyle where green plants are the stars.

Anyway, tomorrow is maundy Thursday, and here in Germany, we called it “der Gründonnerstag” .Traditionally this means that we need to prepare and eat something that is “green”. Spinach, kale, green beans,lettuce and alike are normal favourites!

Soon it will be Easter, Until then, Tschüss!

Suspended Flower Garden in the Netherlands

Those days where we are free to mingle with plants and people..

This is a late post from our last visit in the Netherlands late last year.I am so looking forward already to Spring that I began searching my photos for our last Spring vacation and beautiful fragrant spring bulbs.I´ve bought some bulbs of Hyacinth, Daffodils and Amaryllis and they were all blooming now, their smell inside the house is so fragrant.Few more weeks and I know, Spring is here.

Anyway, yes, back to positive vibes and more Flower love! Last Spring I was really in the mood and wanted to visit a Botanical garden and at the same time to find a place where my daughter can play and not bored ogling plants! Orchideeen Hoeve in Luttelgeest is a perfect place that we´ve found!

When it comesto gardens, botanical ones or not, nothings comes close to the Netherlands .Plants and flowers here are totally of different level. I don´t know but plants grew there on a different level.The species are also so varied.

Beautiful flowers I spotted inside the Orchideen Hoeveee

There are many fascinating things inside the Orchidarium including these sculptured faces and animals out of tree branches and stems.

These crazy Orange Pink Flamingoes are carefree inside the Orchideen Hoeveee

It was freezing cold outside, barren, grey, ugly and most trees are still bare with its leaves long gone withered.But indoor gardens are a different thing. There is a place in the Dutch Lowlands , in Luttelgeest, that can transport you to a plant -paradise destination during winter season! In Orchideeen Hoeve, we had this amazing family experience that really worth the travel and money.

Have you heard about their Suspended Flower Garden?

It´s not yet Spring but I guess just like their Tulips charm, Holland always comes number one for me.I’ve written it many times, and will write once again– their Tulips and Keukenhof Gardens is the most beautiful Spring Garden in the World . It really is, but you need to see it for yourself to judge it. The Suspended Flower Garden in the Netherlands and its Orchid Farm is just extraordinary beautiful.The lay out of the whole farm is great, with lots of things to offer for all ages. No wonder it was really full of visitors during our time of visit.Here you can enjoy a day pass and enjoy all the Amenities.

All blooming plants suspended in the ceiling creates a magical plant paradise

Once we entered the garden, we were all open-mouthed, and drooling at all the hanging beautiful summer blooms. It is huge, vast and overflowing with different kinds of flowers you can imagine! I am sure my German neighbors will be drooling at all the beautiful cascading Geraniums, Fuchsias,Begonias, and Lizzies above our heads!It’s a different world inside in Orchideeen Hoeve.

A great family destination

Inspired by “ Hanami Matsuri” or the Japanese Cherry Blossoms Festival in Japan, the Suspended Flora Garden and it’s greenhouse is as huge as two thousand square meters and seven meters in height. A magical place that creates coziness surrounded with natural living beauties in all colors, flowing oases of fountains, ponds and Gazebos. It looks so summery, and have a mediterranean feel all over the place.Every nook is so picturesque so I can´t really resists to take lots of photos!

There are plenty of areas to sit to enjoy and admire the garden. Whether you come as a couple, family or elderly, the place is huge enough! In case you got hungry, there is the “ Sakura Bistro” that serves snacks and drinks as well.The bathrooms are clean and plenty and there are lots of benches and nooks to rest and wait for your child while they play in the Play areas.Talking about playtime, the Mangrove Forest Play paradise one of the most comprehensive Nature play areas for children that I´ve ever seen.There´s also a Lorraine Garden, Jungle Theater and a Caterpillar Farm.Here I saw their very impressive Citrus Farm as well.

Take a seat and breathe in Nature

I decided to write about this because I really love the concept behind this garden. It is not just a place to admire and relax, but then it’s a place as well to appreciate nature. During Winter, we have limited places to go, especially something fresh as this. I am so glad that I had this experience before the Corona Outbreak happens! We would definitely check out this place once again in our next visit to Holland.

At further end of the Greenhouses, these is a wide place with parrots, birds and animals.Some cute animals that will surely attract your little ones are Meerkats, Ring tailed Lemurs, Ducks, Iguanas, Alpacas, jungle animals, some big fishes and Loris! It´s even like a petting zoo since you are allowed to touch them! I love the Flamingoes and colorful parrots .We enjoyed the butterfly garden and the turtles stretching their legs that looks like they are sunbathing on the banks of the river.In here I have seen as well thousands of swimming colorful Koi Carps in the grand river and waterfalls.

I bought a nice from here as a souvenir and until now, it still thrives!

Thinking of exploring the Dutch Lowlands? these Unique family destinations will surely not hurt your budget but will leave you exhausted, but happy. Have a great week everyone.Tschüss!

The Bicycle capital of the World

Exploring Utrecht with a Toddler

Out and about in the land of Windmills

The Cube Yellow Houses in Rotterdam

Summer flowers in the Botanical Garden in Munich

The ultimate Green Oasis , the Botanical Garden-Nymphenburg in München

A green oasis in the city. An outdoor urban jungle with vast variety of Flora & Fauna kingdom right in the heart of Bavaria.A place where the scare of the Corona virus seemed forgotten, keeping our minds at ease for a moment of rest… and where going back to nature is the truest form of self-respect. Standing in awe of the flowers and plants have kept our hearts happy and our senses revitalized.

After a long wait, finlly we visited the Botanical Gardens in Munich , just after we saw my daughter´s Exhibition in the Internationale Jugendbibliothek in Schloss Blutenburg.This Garden happens to be near to the Nymphenburg Palace so we decided to spend few hours here.Just like everywhere, Corona restrictions is observed. We need to wear masks upon entrance and sitting in Restaurant and of course maintain distance. But roaming around, we can go without.There were quite few visitors but not that we called many. It was a great day and I am totally in my happy place.

The garden is big, but not too huge.It stretches up to 21 heactares and houses approximately 14,000 species of plants .Unfortunately, we were not able to view the Greenhouses because of the current situation but then maybe its another reason to return to this nature paradise.

I feasted my eyes on the beautiful landscape. The garden is beautifully adorned with different plants.It has the late summer blooms that makes it so alive and refreshing. I felt that the air there is really clean and the only sound we hear is the water splashes and buzzing of the bees.I get busied taking phoos of bees feeding on lovely flowers. I am kinda magnetized on these sights so I took plenty of shots capturing this beautiful partnership in nature.

Here, its very evident that plants compete with one another. Every single plant exudes their vitality and charm, and bees were there to abserve them.I´ve read that bees ´s senses are adapted to the signals emitted by the plants and know their scent.They even know how to recognize colors!they love yellows and blue…Hmmmm.

But they cannot see red.So imagine, they onls see Red Poppies as a single black hole.I observed this more often in our garden where bees always flocked to my Lavender plants from the moment they start to bloom up to the last blooms in Summer.bees are indeed loyal to flowers!

Every single flower is unique.The patterns and colours are so rich!

I recognize quite a number of many summer blooms.But still, there are quite many that I am amazed to see.Great thing every single flower /plant is labelled. I took note of the great color combinations.The rows of Roses in full blooms are fragrant so far. My favourite was the light Purple one–I think it was pretty!

The Iris Garden is also something! Facing the grand pond with waterlilies and more Dahlias and Zinias, this place is quite captivating.Green and light blue shades of Iris are so soothing.There are many Parrot sculptures spread across the Garden.I really don´t know the meaning of its symbolic meaning but then it adds grace to the garden.

My daughter wants an ice cream so we tried the Restaurant.It was ok but I think it was a little overpriced and the service took so long.Maybe next time we will just bring our own snacks!

I have heard that this Botanical Garden attracts more than 35,000 visitors a year and now I can understand why. It may not be as grand as the Keukenhof Gardens and the Orchideeen Hoeve´ in the Netherlands but the 16,000 + plant species they are keeping are quite a collection to ponder about! I am sure that for any plant lover—a place like this is never to be missed! I am not surprised if it is the top visited Botanical garden in Bavaria!

Visiting green Oasis and Gardens has been our favourite thing to do during this Pandemie.We felt safer being surrounded by plants, maybe because they signify life. I am grateful that we have access to see gardens like these and costing only a few Euros.I would be writing for sure again about this garden when we return to see the Greenhouses once it opened again.

Watching nature´s metamorphosis is one simple pleasure in life that we should not take in for granted.

Do you love Botanical Gardens? When was the last time you visited one?

Whether you only need a moment of ME-Time, or you feel like taking some pictures of lush greenery for your Instagram and social media, or some ideas to post in your Blog,visiting your local Garden is quite an option! You don´t need to travel far and spent a fortune.

Personally, I´ve always wanted to learn more about plants and maybe be a part of a volunteer group for a Gardening or just to learn something or do something for the environment, then I would be happy…

If you love plants and green Oasis, here are some related Posts I have written as well. Tschüss , stay safe everyone!

Labyrinth Garden

Keukenhof Gardens in Lisse, the Netherlands

Poppy Flower, the beloved German flower of the Year

Fragile Summer Flowers in Bavaria

Yellow fields in Bavaria

Summer days with Poppies

Standing bold and bright, fragile and beautiful against the wild sun.

Have you ever wondered what are the flowers included in the Flower of the Year Campaign (Blume des Jahres) in Germany?

I have no idea whatsoever, not until I came across this interesting list over Here. I find it really worthwhile to know that here in Germany they have such cause of protecting the Endangered Plants, let alone wild Flowers. Who would have cared? for others, they are just type of grass or weeds which grows wild on fields. Not so here ! They called it “Stiftung zum Schutze gefährdeter Pflanzen” , which was initiated by the wife of former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt in 1985.The purpose of this campaign was to create public awareness about the ecological impacts and importance of wild flowers and protecting the endangered ones.

They published the flower of the year every October of the year in order to promote this campaign. I love plants and everything and I normally used to illustrate flowers as well using watercolor .I looked forward every year seeing them bloom like crazy in Spring through Summer !

I recalled writing about 2017´s Flower of the Year for Germany is the common Poppy, or well known as “Klatschmohn, or Papaver Rhoeas“. This year 2020 its the Bogbean or the Fieberklee.If you are curious about the official list of flowers, you can read more Here. I also found a very nice film about the Flower of the Year Fieberklee .

This Summer, I have done quite a lot of running and leisure walks to capture them. Even when we do some family trips, I tried to photographed them and these one are by far my favourites these year! If you are in Instagram, you will see that they are on top of feeds of people who love nature and plants.

I love the fact that they exude a different aura even when the sun is about to set. For those of you who are new to Germany, a sight of Mohn blumen feld is something to behold. I always love to take a walk in every flower fields nearby to admire them.I guess I love seeing them better than tall buildings!

Poppy flowers in Bavaria

I am planning to create a Flower journal and printed them once I am done compiling them. I remember when I was a child, we always made a calss project out of dried plants and flowers. We put the flowers and leaves in between the pages of book and let them dry for a while. Dried flowers have another charm and it creates a bit of nostalgia.Nowadays, I do it with lavender flowers!

During this time that we have restrictions because of Corona virus, out in the green nature is one of our favourite pastime.We love leisure walks and staying out of crowded areas is far by the best to get going. I am doing my runs in the morning and seeing them in different forms is enjoyable.Gazing at the vast flower fields for a moment is a time well spent and for me, never wasted. Wildflowers are reminders that seasons and nature go by their own course even without human to interfere. They just pop out of the blue!

Lovely Poppy fields I saw on our way to see a Castle
A quick stop and snapshot during a run

Compared with the mighty Tulips and Dandelions, they are quite humble beauties. The don´t need much, except lots of sunshine and rain to thrive.Streets and fields would be so dull without them I think.

Poppy flowers hidden with bushy weeds, creating contrast of pure wilderness

Speaking of flower love and urban gardening, I would like to put into writing how much I appreciate my local town when it comes to their love for plants and flowers. Every one is crazy pampering their own garden and balconies with plants! It´s a fact that Germans love gardening and plants, in all seasons.Because of Corona crisis, the Landesgartenshau 2020 were canceled so we were not able to see the flower show here in Ingolstadt. But the thing is, Landesgartenshau gave so many flowers and garden plants to people of Ingolstadt. We were one of the lucky recipients of the box filled with 6 different flowering plants donated by them.their aim is to bring joy to all plant lover and give them a bit of the flower charm in every garden here.People driving Audis and expensive cars lined up just to get these free plants!

I guess summer days would not be complete without Poppy flowers and the rest of wildflowers. Together with Sunflowers, they remind me that sunny days and warm feelings are free gifts to enjoy without a cost.Now that we are still under Corona crisis, walking into nature is one of the best theraphy that we can reward ourselves!

What´s your favorite flower?

A day in the Life and Spring is back!

Thank you to the ever industrious city gardeners for providing us beautiful Spring flower cases.Who says you can´t enjoy some nature beauty alone? This is in front of our local Rathaus ( Cityhall) where its normally flocked with people everyday but during the lockdown, its all empty. Here I´ve witnessed the change of plants depending on the season. I am so proud that I live in a place where nature puts at its best and given for public to enjoy. Garden and parks are well maintained despite the Pandemic and that is really worthy of praise.

The other day I was desperately needing a nature boost and a couple of hours spent outdoors to breathe some fresh air is always good. I was greeted by lovely spring atmosphere and new foliage colors. The magnolia and blossom trees from our neighbour signals the change of season and we are all loving it.I watched it everyday from our window.I noticed that everything is slowly, or rather incognito turning back to life, exuding a rare confidence of vibrant spirit during the dire times of pandemic. Of course we can´t sit out in Biergartens or meet with friends. Sunshine on my face feels great, I ´ve missed the light sting it does on my skin. I´m thankful that I´m still alive and I am bent to continue writing for this Blog. Last weekend I decided to visit our local park and saw that the Daffodils were on their last blooms.I observed that some flowers have served their purpose already, slowly on the bend, downing for their final bows…I guess soon it will the turn of the Dandelions and sunflowers to amaze us!

Lovely surprise! A bed of Flowers to say thank you to all Ingolstädters!!!
A piece of a bed of spring blooms is now open for citizens of Ingolstadt to enjoy, arranged by the gracious people behind the Landesgartenschau 2020 which is unfortunately not expected to open up until May 29 until October 4,2020. More information about the actual events is on their website Here.

One of the events that I certainly looking forward to attend this year was the Landesgartenshau 2020 here in Ingolstadt. It´s like bringing Keukenhof here in Germany. I have written many times how I admire all the plant loving people here in my town and how much it inspired me to start gardening as well. I love plants and everything inspired by nature so for me, this is one of the highlights in Spring and the coming warmer months. It was supposed to open this April but considering the health risks we are facing because of Corona, it is not yet sure if it can be open for public even up to latest of May.We don´t know yet when will everything returns to normal.The acres of magnificent Garden site and flower show is already built and the exhibition is set off to kick off soon but then for the meantime, everything is put on hold.

Can you imagine the loss that the small entrepreneurs and flower shops including garden shops are facing right now due to the crisis?

From last weeks´s weather that reached up to 23 dec Celsius, I thought Summer came early! It felt warm and my daughter is asking me if she can swim outside! Finally, it´s time to ditch the layers and wear shorts and tshirts! Despite the corona lockdown, people here managed to go out for a few hours. Aside from usual shopping and errands, children are running in the streets, cycling and people keep on walking, but of course with distance! Bottomline is, people just kept on, moving forward. It´s hard not to enjoy the inviting sun especially when outside breathes a lot of fresh blooms. Just look at them…!

Of course it´s still a day in the Life of Quarantine so the much needed tranquil and peace is out there. Every morning I hear the chriping of the birds. I usually watch them from my window when they fly back to their nest and sometimes they stop on top of the hedge. Out in Klenzepark, a park where we frequently visit because it has a lovely playground, I admired once again the field of blossoming white and yellow Daffodils, here its known as Narzissen.This park used to be full with sunbathers and families trying to wiggle off the dust of boredom and gasping for fresh air, letting their bundles of joy run around like crazy in the open field, especially on weekends. But now everything is empty, so serene.What a difference when everybody else is staying at home, except for the few brave ones who still needs to go to work. I guess nobody wants to make loud noises these days.Here, Easter went off quickly and our foolish thoughts were grilled right there in the comfort of our balconies, listening to music, and getting away from the family drama. A number of lithe people still sweating their limbs as they go on with their fitness and sports regime, exhaling the numb sounds of fear and succombing to the natural call of the hour— which is to keep on living and staying healthy.

Until next Springtime Dandelions!
My walking photograpy Spring tour
This is a magnificent view but sometimes I really wonder if the air that we breathe in is still clean or already infiltrated with the virus? Haven´t you wondered about this too?

How does Spring looks like in your area?

How many times were you out since the lockdown?

I am looking forward to discover new nature on my next walk and hopefully I could take better photos by then!

Until next time my friends, Stay safe!

Yellow and Crooked Wednesdays

Sunset beneath our yellow Forsythia

There is something about the yellow color that inspires me nowadays. It´s Springtime and outside is slowly becoming colorful again. Yellow has been the number one color for me during early days of Spring. I know that warm days are coming as soon as I see a buds coming out from the ground in our garden.
It signals growth, new beginning, and yes…a fresh start and during this time of Corona virus pandemic—Hope!

The Pandemic crisis have absolutely changed the way we are observing the Holy week and Easter here in Germany. For the record, there is still a strong measure forbidding any meeting more than 2 people and churches are still closed. The yearly Östernbrünnen and Östermarkt were also cancelled . I am still fond of my childhood experiences and how we celebrate the Lenten season way back in the Philippines compared here in Germany. By the way, I chose the color yellow for flowers as a subject of this post together with Ash Wednesday ( also known as Spy Wednesday and Crooked Wednesday) as a deviation of the subject of Corona pandemic. Yellow is such a beautiful color during this time and it really signifies Spring! Finally, winter is done and we can tidy up our winter stuff! I was sitting in the garden today and staring at our Forsythia bush which is gleaming yellow under the 24 degrees sunny day. I looked in the date and its Ash Wednesday.

What´s the significance of this day anyway?

The major highlight of this day is when Judas Iscariot hand over Jesus Christ to the authorities. In other words, the day of betrayal of a follower from his Master.Judas received 30 pieces of silver coins in exchange of this.

Ash Wednesday ( Ashenmittwoch) I was born and raised as a Catholic so for me, aside from Christmas season, Holy week is one of the holidays we are keen to celebrate. I remember that during Holy week, we always have fond memories as a family.As a kid, Holy week means vacation. Summer vacation normally starts around April and graduations in schools. When I came here in Germany, I have never seen the same and sometimes, I really wonder why. I never saw people having palm branches during Palm Sundays, nor people wearing ash during a mass in Churches, neither any procession during Good Friday. People seldom go to church.I am not a religious person but when it comes to religion, it´s a very silent topic here although I really admire the beautiful churches here.Last Christmas, I attended a Dutch mass in the Netherlands and I was really surprised that the kneeling section of the chairs have soft foam cushions!

Here in Germany, especially here in Bavaria, the only thing that shows that its Easter here is the Easter eggs and egg hunting for kids. The different varieties of chocolate eggs, Östermarkt ( Easter Market), Österhase ( Easter Bunny, where it should be a Hare).I don´t know with the other regions if they have such celebrations but as far as I know, I never heard of it.

The Golden yellow Fields in Bavaria

With Corona virus and social distancing, these things are not possible. Crooked Wednesday is an ordinary day for some.Today was quite a beautiful day here and I observed the influx of people outside. Early morning today we walked through the nearby bakery and I saw that people are going out like a normal day. Cycling and on their skates, looks like everything is back to normal. Families taking a walk, with small children and having a chat with their neighbours. No masks, no hesitation.

I noticed how a great sunny weather changes suddenly the mood of the people.

Stay safe everyone!

Let’s paint the town Purple!

Purple beauty among the weeds

As I was scrolling down in my photo gallery, I noticed that I have photographed so many Purple flowers! They are collections from my walks and frequent garden visits. I realized how many different purple hues we have with different types of flowers. They are all simply gorgeous and bring a calming effect to the senses.

Etchinos Ritro wonder ball

Hope you enjoy it!

Tell me, do you like purple flowers? which one is your favorite?

One more day and it’s weekend, wishing everyone a great time, until then . Tschüss!

Summer fragile beauties in Germany

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need..”
{Marcus Tullius Cicero}

Goodbye Spring and Hello Summer!

My old little town here in Ingolstadt in southern Bavaria has a beautiful bed of mixed summer perennials or wild blooms spread all over the town. Germany is indeed a beautiful country but these little country details made me feel at home even more. I lived 5 minutes away from a lush walking forest and 10 minutes from Klenzepark. I think it’s such a new experience for me to see great nature instead of a bunch of cars parked outside or pile of garbage. Also cycling everyday made me appreciate my neighborhood and notice this details about flowering plants.Here, parks and gathering areas are normally decorated with real plants, not plastic.Aside from the fact that most Germans love gardening and plants, they are also crazy about buying cut flowers and bouquets! Everyday, most shops have fresh cut flowers and they are on a decent price. I am totally impressed that here, the outdoor landscape changes in every season and that they are taken cared of by the city gardeners. There are even wild spaces that is full of bright flowers that really looks amazing. I was even thinking how do they plant different varieties that the outcome is raw, and authentically beautiful.

For almost three years of living here, I’ve got already the trend when it comes to plants and flowers for every season. Summer perennials, or blooms are a reminder of the bright golden days ahead full of warm sunshine and colors. Flowers like Poppy, cornflowers, pansies,peonies, roses, zinias, and petunias etc. are blooming like crazy. They are so lovely to look at. I’ve always wanted to stop and gaze upon them. At home I know that summer is at my doorstep when my lavenders are in full swing. The proud stems full of blue violet flowers gives a fresher, brighter look in our place, its an enigma.

I was too busy for the past days that I haven’t had the chance to write about my own garden update and my first ever raised-garden ( or Hochbeet). I was even more thankful that my little “Roses corner“in our garden are now in full bloom to think that Spring is not even officially over! If you live in Germany, I think you know that Germans start to raid the shops for gardening stuff even before Spring arrives. Every balcony, patio, garden and every tiny window is transformed into a botanical garden. Germans love gardening, plants and yes–flowers! This is one of the reason why I am into plant propagation and planting my own herbs, flowering plants and cultivating my indoor pot garden. Through time, I have learned which plants to cultivate, which plant survives the frost and cold winter days and so on.When it comes to flowering plants, my crew is limited because most of them doesn’t survive the cold and I don’t have enough space to place them. I was thrilled this year that my Chrysanthemum survived winter last year and now continuously growing.

Are you also excited for Summer as I do?

I am thrilled when I looked up the weather forecast for the coming days and saw that warm days are coming, finaaaallly! The other day, I even went to work without a jacket! To tell you frankly, Summer has a brand new meaning for me here. Finally people sit outside and tan under the sun and having a drink for hours! Aside from so many constructions going on in the streets, people are cycling like crazy! What I mean is that here in South Germany, Beer culture is a real thing and is part of our daily grind, so sitting in Beer gardens is just as important as going to work. I am Asian and the hot weather was also so real , it’s a daily struggle to battle with humidity. I knew how it is to live in a “hot”city like Kuwait where temperatures reaches up to 48 degrees and the so called “spring and winter days flies so fast” and we don’t have summer blooms to admire, only palm trees! But here in Germany, summer signals for something else. Summer here for me means vacation, shorts, grilling and BBQ, sandals, garden, my plants are alive and blooming flowers!

So let me share with you my private gallery of my favorite summer fragile beauties.One of my pastime is to photograph nature, just like going to my favorite nearby lake. I’ve always said that you can never go wrong with nature. It’s one of my favorite subject. Last week during my free day, we went out to our local park and I’ve took some photos from Labyrinth garden and the Rose garden. I was just in awe of the simple beauties of the colorful blooms that looks so eager to welcome the warm sunny days . I called them fragile beauties because their beauty can be so dainty and fleeting like wonderful Tulips, too much heat and they also wither, and to think that summer days seems to be so short, they go so fast.

These bright violets flowers for the weary heart but do you know how the mystery behind the Cornflower?
I cannot simply stop staring at them. It might look violet or dark blue under the sun.
This one is a total eye-catcher with its fluffy petals and sunshine yellow pistils.
The wall of Roses
A walk to remember in the rose garden where history is written in the walls and the crawling roses are the storytellers.
They are warm reminder that good things comes to those who wait.

What about you, what do you love about summer personally? What is your favorite summer perennials?

If you are looking for ideas on how to spend your time nature tripping and wondering about the fragile summer flower beauties in Germany, these posts below might interests you. If you have time to kill then go check them out. This is going to be exciting because I’ll be posting and writing more for the upcoming “Landesgartenshau 2020 ” will will be held here in Ingolstadt and it’s all about plants, landscape, flowers, music, arts and everything exciting and last but not the least, I want to share with you 10 cool reasons why people over here go crazy about the Audi Sommerkonzert !

Until next time and thank you for reading !

Showoff Scarlet Forsythia

Fields of Gold, Rapeseeds in Bavaria

Bavarian Summer Flowers

Sunflower fields in Germany

Tschüss!