Most people who know me well or who have purchased any of my jewelry designs know that I'm pretty passionate about nature and am an avid flower lover. I also love visiting other gardens to see their layouts and what plants they use to create beauty within the garden.
We live in Washington state and our state flower is the rhododendron which are called "rhodies" by the locals. If you've ever visited our state, these flowers can grow wild in the forests and a lot of people have these gorgeous easy keeping shrubs in their gardens.
One of the best places to see flowering rhodies is the Washington Arboretum in Seattle. They even have an entire section or walkway called Azalea Way. If you didn't know it rhododendrons and Azaleas are in the same family, so some of these photos include azaleas too. If you haven't already realized it, I like photography and all these photos are mine (so are all the photos on my Instagram account) and I use just my IPhone 6s for all my photos.
The detailing inside the flowers of this rhodie is amazing.
Don't you love the woodsy look of this section of the Washington Arboretum?
Yellow and blush pink combo which is totally sublime.
The white of the blooming dogwood here contrasts well with the colors of these azaleas.
I love this profusion of pink.
This butter yellow is gorgeous too.
Don't you love how the buds are a darker pink of the actual bloom?
Insider tip for a visit here. There is no charge to visit the Washington Arboretum. Also if you have additional time, it's worth visiting the nearby Japanese Gardens especially if it's Spring or Fall. Entrance is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors and students with ID and parking is free. The Japanese Gardens are a part of the Washington Arboretum, but it is easier to drive to them and use the designated parking lot. I'd highly recommend doing a guided tour. The volunteers are really knowledgeable about the garden and Japanese traditions.
Another really lovely Washington garden to visit is Lakewold Gardens in Lakewood, near Tacoma. They have a talented staff of horticulturists and May is the best time to see all their rhododendrons too. You can even bring a picnic to these gardens or just find a bench in a secluded spot and read a book all day.
My love of flowers is the inspiration for my broken china jewelry range. I upcycle already damaged china which often has floral designs and I use it in earrings, bracelets and pendants, like the jewelry below.
When you visit this area, a really good time to come is in late April and May as a lot of gorgeous plants are blooming and we are mostly done with our rainy season. April is wonderful for visiting the tulip fields in the Skagit Valley. You can read a blog post of mine here about at trip to the tulip fields there. These fields are incredible especially on a sunny day.
I was so blown away by the beauty of the flowers at the Washington Arboretum that I combined them with inspirational and uplifting quotes and included them in one of my blog posts. You can read it here. I hope that you also find these quotes and flower photos inspiring. Feel free to pin this blog post on Pinterest or share it on Facebook. Beauty like this brightens anyone's day.