|Swan swimming under the bridge in the moat at Bok Tower Gardens|
These photos are from the visit that my husband and I took to Bok Tower Gardens in 2009. It is located just two hours south of Orlando, Florida amid the beautiful orange groves of Lake Wales, FL. The setting is amazing - especially in February, when fleeing from a snow-bound Pennsylvania!
An excerpt from Bok's about the garden:
In 1921, Edward W. Bok was spending the winter months in the residential mountain lake community located adjacent to one of the highest hills of Florida’s Lake Wales Ridge, 298 feet above sea level. He enjoyed taking evening walks to the top of “Iron Mountain,” among the virgin pines and sandhill scrub, to enjoy Florida’s dramatic sunsets and bird life. The idea came to him to preserve this hilltop and create a bird sanctuary – a place of beauty, serenity and peace.In Part 1: Paths & Plantings, I shared some of the beautifully designed paths by renowned American landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted Jr.. In Part 2, I have included photos of the calming pools and also of the distant views provided from the garden's high vantage point.
Part 2: Water & Vistas
|The vista/approach to the garden is beautiful from a mile away; the carillon Tower rising above the orange orchards.|
|After you have climbed the hill, through winding paths, you are greeted by the reflection in the Tower moat.|
|The banks are lush with azaleas, palms and other tropicals, all draped in misty Spanish moss.|
|Following the azalea-spotted paths to the left, through a palm grove.|
|A view of a palm-covered island is seen from the left side of the moat.|
|Walking further on, you can see the front bank and peep at the garden swans.|
|View of the left side of the Tower. It was completed in 1929, using neo-Gothic and art deco styles, with a sort of Florida fusion.|
|Mr. Swan caught showing off in the moat.|
|The moat is truly captivating in its garden-refined reflections.|
|Strolling along behind the tower, you begin to notice some distant views...|
|A collection of live oaks (Quercus virginiana) create a cathedral effect right up to the edge of Iron Mountain.|
|The orange fields below stretch as far as you can see in all directions.|
One last water view before leaving Bok...
|Great Blue Heron landing silently on the wildlife pond, just beyond the lookout.|
See Part 1: Paths & Plantings