OUTING to KEW GARDENS and ORCHID FESTIVAL  -  Wed. 24th February

After a cold and frosty start we were rewarded with warm sunshine, a
perfect early spring day – Kew at its best. I took the ‘Kew
Explorer’, the land train which takes one through the wilder parts
of the gardens, through groves of trees and beside the river with
convenient stops along the way. The highlight for me was the Shirley
Sherwood Gallery with paintings of Brazilian plants by artists new
and old, especially Margaret Mee’s pictures of flowers in Brazilian
rainforests. The rainforest itself was powerfully evoked by our
visit to the Princess of Wales Conservatory with its magnificent
displays of orchids in the warm and steamy conditions of the jungle.
The Alpine House was a delight too, in a different way, tiny crocus,
iris, narcissus and so many others; a complete contrast to the
flamboyance of the Brazilian plants.

Outside it was warm enough to sit in the sun and appreciate immaculate
bedding polyanthus by the Palm House and walk past drifts of crocus
and narcissus in the long grass; hellebores, camellias and early

magnolias in flower too - so much to see.

I missed a ‘superb’ exhibition, the International Garden
Photographer of the Year – no time for everything! The journey to
and fro went smoothly, David our driver was able to drop off and
collect us conveniently close to the Victoria Gate with its café and
tempting shop………. Thank you Caroline for organising such an

enjoyable visit - can we go again please?

Barbara Case