No rose photos here. This is my second post on Highline SeaTac Botanical Gardens. (See Landscape Index, above, for rose photos.) This post will focus on other images ranging from the Japanese garden to forest primeval to live water with lively goldfish.
Let’s start with the Japanese garden. There are stacked-stone (and concrete) arrangements that made me think of men with big hats and hollow heads. Knowing as little as I do about Japanese culture, that’s probably off by a mile, so if you know what these creations represent, clue me in.
The Gardens cover more than ten acres, much of it a thick woods with interlacing trails. When I first arrived at around 10:30 a.m., almost no one else (except the maintenance crew) was there. As a result, the woods felt private and, to me at least, comforting. Some of the trees were quite sizable. Not giant redwoods, but far from saplings. Others were covered with ivy from ground to crown. Still others sported woody vine braids some five inches thick; those looked stout enough to support Tarzan, Jane, and Tantor the elephant.
The only irritant? Jet planes fly overhead constantly. The Gardens are situated directly beneath a major departure lane from SeaTac airport, with a jet heading out every couple of minutes. They’re still low enough when they pass overhead to rumble your ears quite effectively, with the whine of the accelerating jet engines more than noticeable.
I’ve always enjoyed watching what we called “skater bugs” darting around the surface water of still ponds and quiet eddies. I’d also known that mayflies can be great fish-catchers for the fly fisherman. What I did not realize is that skater bugs and mayflies are one and the same. Moving around on a watery surface instead of through the air makes the mayfly less susceptible to being scooped up by low flying predators, birds and bats and such. Of course, that also makes them vulnerable to fish rising from the depths.
Seen through the magic of zoom lens photography, the skater bug is all too obviously a fly. Fooey. Takes all the magic out of it, right there. A little knowledge may be a dangerous thing, but too much knowledge can be disillusionment incarnate. Still, the following photo was deemed worthy of inclusion in this post. Clouds overhead are reflected in the water, along with the underside of the mayfly itself, making it look like two bugs are flying through those clouds, not attached to the water.
There are benches at several locations in the Gardens, including beneath a skeleton structure of wooden posts and poles that is artistic if nothing else.
A first-time visitor will come across unexpected color in the midst of massive greenery. One tree, which leaned forward at a pretty sharp angle, grew approximately one foot thick at the base and sported flashy red bark.
For some minutes, I sat mostly motionless on an uncomfortable iron bench, noticing that the longer I sat, the more camera-worthy subjects made themselves known. Running water, goldfish, lily pads complete with brilliant fuchsia lilies; the list goes on.
This page is getting unwieldy, slow to load with so many multi-megabyte photos on it. Even so, let’s see if four more snapshots will work. If not, feel free to mention it in the comments.
Okay, we’re stopping there. Few Google Images of Highline SeaTac Botanical Gardens show these “down deep in the woods” areas. Let’s hope this post adds a bit of understanding for Internet travelers. To anyone who enjoys plant life galore in all its glory, this well maintained acreage is well worth visiting.