Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

A Grand Day Out in Tacoma

Today Nigel and I had a lovely little outing into Tacoma, to Point Defiance Park. Yesterday, we had a very quiet day -- well, at least it was quiet inside the house. Outside, of course, it being the Fourth of July, was a totally different matter. For at least four hours last night, it sounded like a war zone out there, with all the fireworks going off right in our neighborhood. They are allowed for three days at the Fourth of July, and some people here go all out, even so far as shooting off the ones that go high into the air and produce huge sparkly blooms. We had spent the entire day at home, didn't even go out anywhere to eat. Sat in the back garden on our lounge chairs, drinking soda, reading, and just enjoying our garden. I think I did the rounds once, pulling a couple of weeds when I noticed them.

Point Defiance Lodge Visitors Center

Point Defiance Park in Tacoma has a beautiful garden and walking trails, as well as a nice play area for kids, and a zoo and aquarium. I've been wanting to go there for a while, so when Nigel (who had taken the day off work) said "What shall we do today?" I decided it was time to head there. It made for a grand day out.

Begonias in one of the hanging baskets on the porch

There is an absolutely magnificent rose garden there, actually two of them, and I got some really lovely photos of roses. I seldom show photos of roses on my blog, because I don't grow any. I love the flowers, especially the ones with great scents, but the shrubs themselves are, well, ugly. Usually disease-ridden, pruned to within an inch of their lives. Where I have room for rose, I'd rather plant a different shrub with interesting foliage.

Anyway, I hope you like roses, if not you will be very bored with this post. It is going to be a rose orgy. (Sorry, I didn't keep track of names, not all of them had name tags.)

What looks like a bank of roses here behind the lower ones is actually a trellis tunnel with climbing roses all over it.

There was a group of volunteers there with clippers, trimming, pruning, and deadheading the roses.

This rose was huge, truly -- as big as my head, I think.

There are some interesting foliage combinations in some of the beds too.

Whoever is in charge of pruning this weeping conifer is a genius -- assuming, that is, that it's meant to look like a mastodon.

I know they're pretty common, but I am always impressed by enormous calla lilies. They're one of my favorite flowers.

Calla lily foliage next to bear's breeches

The gardens had several enormous Gunneras

So tropical-looking -- and check out that blue sky!

Do dogwoods bloom in July anywhere else in the country?
After I gallivanted around the garden beds taking pictures and oohing and aahing, we went for a little walk.
I wanted to get a snap of Nigel walking ahead of me, silhouetted, but he heard me stop and started to turn to see what had captured my attention.

So wonderfully tranquil

Point Defiance Park is right on the Sound

I wish I could have known the woman who gave her name to this bench, doesn't she sound like a hoot?

Well, I hope you enjoyed this trip to Point Defiance Park with me!


  1. That is a great place! I love the 5-mile drive in Point Defiance Park especially! The rose garden has so many rose varieties... Thank you for showing some of them! I also love their hydrangeas and fuchsias. It was great to see you recently, Alison!

  2. I really enjoyed this trip..those roses were luscious. I especially like the pretty, deep yellow ones. Weren't you surprised to see the palm tree and looking so healthy?!

    Thanks for sharing! xo

  3. Thanks for sharing this with us Alison! I live in Tacoma and am ashamed that I haven't gone to Point Defiance Park for a couple of years. Did you see/stop by Jungle Fever on the way?


  4. Absolutely gorgeous! I especially loved the weeping conifer and the "tranquil" path. I'll definitely be adding Point Defiance Park to my "must do when on the west side" list!

  5. I meant to tell you how great all these colors and textures here! Just beautiful.

  6. My uncle used to have an amusement park somewhere in Point Defiance Park. I was just a kid, and unaware of the real attraction...thanks for showing it.

  7. Granny Hot Wheels does sound fun. Love all the roses, there was a pale pink one that was so it. Thanks for taking us along with you on the day trip.

  8. Thank you for a wonderful tour. I love every single rose photo! I don't grow very many roses for the same reason you described so seeing other people's roses is always a treat. I love that wooded path and the rocky chimney on the VC. The blue Eryngym look like a cluster of sparklers. Fitting for the day, right?

  9. Beautiful rose photos! But I notice nary a bee or other pollinator in sight? Do you suppose they spray the flowers to keep pests away and inadvertently ward off pollinators too?


Gardening is a solitary activity. But blogging about it is a social phenomenon! I don't make money from my blog by advertising, or use it to drive customers to a business. If you liked my post, or my writing or photography, or even just one picture or turn of phrase, I'd love to hear from you. That's how I get paid.