Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Exploring the UBC Botanical Gardens and Greenheart TreeWalk

by Keith and Heather Nicol
    On Saturday July 23 we wanted to show my sister, her son and husband who were visiting from Arizona the UBC Botanical Garden and Greenheart TreeWalk. The Greenheart TreeWalk is an elevated 300 meter walkway up to 17 meters above the forest floor and gives a bird's eye view of the temperate rainforest vegetation! Our last visit here was in early May in 2014 and at that time the many rhododendrons in bloom were the highlight. On this visit we wanted to do the Greenheart TreeWalk as well as check out the Physic Garden and Food Garden. There are several other garden loops with various other themes but we only had time to sample a couple of gardens on this visit.
These gardens are known for their collection of lianas which are woody climbers that wrap around trees

      The Greenheart TreeWalk was very popular with a variety of people and we saw many families enjoying the elevated views of the trees and understory below. My sister’s son especially enjoyed it. The TreeWalk is mostly anchored to trees but in one case a metal platform has been constructed with a higher lookout accessed by a circular staircase. The TreeWalk takes about 30 minutes to complete which allows time to explore some of the other gardens. 

Sister Jan negotiating swinging swinging walkway on the Greenheart TreeWalk
  From there we headed to the Physic Garden which is a collection of medieval plants that were used to treat various health aliments. It is nicely layout out and features a sundial in the middle. We also enjoyed the food garden and especially the shaped fruit trees. The UBC botanical garden is Canada’s oldest university garden and is home to more than 120,000 plants representing some 6,000 taxa. It offers much to see and we need to return to see some of the other gardens and take a tour. For more information see: http://botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/
Geum Urbanum is part of the medicine garden and was thought to ward off evil spirits

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