Please, sir, may I have some more?
On Sunday evening we attended Goblins in the Garden, an annual Halloween event at the Wildflower Center. The city’s little haunters were out in force, and it was fun to see the volunteers running the event dressed in the spirit of the season. The warm weather allowed for thin costumes without coats, though by the end of the evening a chill was in the air. All in all, perfect Halloween weather.
The Big Bugs exhibit is still at the Wildflower Center, so we strolled around the grounds to ogle the wood-and-metal constructions. Some of these insects look quite fearsome on this scale, making me glad not to be bug-sized. Here are some photos from the evening.
A praying mantis dwarfs a young Superman.
The spiraling cistern in the main courtyard (the center uses a system of aqueducts and cisterns to collect and store rainwater from its rooftops) towers over the other buildings. Inside, spooky lights led the way up curving steps to the top, with a large rubber spider dropping down to scare the kids—and a few adults—at the halfway point. Here you can see the outside portion of the stairs to the top of the tower, as well as a giant inflatable spider. In the foreground, in the Meadow Garden, marches one of three Big Bug ants.
In the Demonstration Garden, a diamond of glowing, white Salvia greggii surrounds a large pot.
Ladybug in the Members Garden. Where are those giant aphids?
A quiet path in the Meditation Garden. At this very spot my kids and I once met Lady Bird Johnson. The Hill Country Stream feature was brand-new, and my then-preschooler son was gleefully chunking small rocks into the water. As Lady Bird rolled up in a wheelchair, pushed by her daughter, I became embarrassed about the rock-chunking (messing with Lady Bird’s garden!) and tried discreetly to get him to stop. Being a toddler, he did not. But Lady Bird pretended not to notice and smiled and asked whether we were enjoying the day. I was carrying my newborn daughter in a sling, and Lady Bird asked how old she was. It was a treat to see her in the garden center she founded. She’s a gracious woman who’s done a lot to promote native plants, and I was glad for the chance to tell her what a treasure the Wildflower Center is. But, boy, I wish we had not been caught throwing rocks in her pretty new creek.
Further down the stream
An ant on the march
Gulf muhly grass glowing at sunset
A damselfly in the Butterfly Garden’s pond
A window in a limestone wall opens on a view of the Demonstration Garden.
Assassin bug in the Demonstration Garden.
Do you vant to drink some blood?