Less than perfect

130919 Emerge

This photo was taken at one of my favorite locations, Eureka Springs Park, a few miles east of Tampa (FL).

The 31-acre garden was cultivated by an amateur horticulturalist beginning in the 1930s until he donated the grounds to the county in the late 1960s. His bequest had only two stipulations: (1) that the property remain a botanical garden and (2) that it should be free to the public. I’m guessing the $2 parking fee skirts the edges of the donor’s wishes, but it is a small price to pay for the opportunity to experience an area that, in my opinion, is becoming more and more natural.

In the founder’s time, the property’s natural springs supported both indigenous and imported plantings. Recent “improvements” diverted the spring water to the extent that the garden is now entirely dependent on rainwater to nourish its plants. In arid years, plants struggle to survive; when it rains, they get along a little better. The garden’s environment has changed enough that most of its original water-dependent plants have died off and have since been replaced by nature’s heartier bounty.

Another complication is that the county’s caretaker staff is modest, usually only one person on site on any given day. They do what they can and, in conversation, are enthusiastic about their work—but the sad fact is, there’s way more to attend to than they can deal with.

Despite its limitations, the park is a treasure in our community. During my many visits there, I’ve seen other amateur photographers honing their skills, a number of photo shoots (think graduation, engagement, wedding, fashion, etc.), dog walkers, nature lovers, etc. Modern life does intrude—it is sometimes difficult to ignore the distraction of cars whizzing by on a nearby thoroughfare and/or the sounds of private airplane and helicopter traffic at the nearly adjacent executive airport. Still, it remains a reprieve from the modern world.

Posted for Kim Klassen’s Texture Tuesday. Image was processed with two layers of Kim’s Appreciate texture set to Soft Light at 50% opacity. The second layer warms and lightens the overall composition. Fonts: Beautiful Caps Es, Beautiful ES, and Century Gothic.

7 thoughts on “Less than perfect

  1. So often we’re so busy demanding perfection that we miss the good that does exist. Even though the changes at the park might in some aspects be unfortunate, there is clearly much good left to be found. I love your rose – isolated in that beautiful light against the soft, contrasting background. Your subtle texturing is perfect.

  2. How wonderful that you are able to enjoy this flowering garden area – perfect or not. I love the gorgeous light on this bloom as it reaches toward us, out of the frame. As always, beautiful use of text.

  3. “A reprieve..” what a lovely way to describe a place which sounds as if it provides a welcome breathing space for a lot of people.

    I’ve been wanting to thank you for your comment about my “glamping” page: it delighted me because the chapter you mentioned in the Harry Potter books – the one with the tent? – that’s my favourite bit in all of the books 🙂

  4. So beautiful. Love how you’ve textured the image and your gorgeous script style. This garden sounds like such a precious gift in spite of modern life distractions (and I did smile at the $2 car parking to get round the no-charge wishes!). Happy weekend to you. 🙂

  5. Wanda, My mom would have loved this garden area, and she would have loved the photo of the rose, which was her favorite flower. Thank you for sharing this. It gives me good thoughts because of mom. Take care, Bill

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