During our visit to Hershey Gardens last month, the tulips were at their peak, bursting with color in a variety of shapes and sizes.

I decided on an orange(-ish) theme today.  My father, who enjoyed Blue & Purple from my Color Series, has asked me to do something for him in orange so I’ve been looking through my photos, looking for ideas and inspiration.

Look Up: The Children’s Garden

This pig, who spends all his time looking up, is in the Children’s Garden at Hershey Gardens.   There are 30 themed gardens within the Children’s Garden, filled with fun and whimsy.  It was early in the season so not many of the flowers and plants were out and blossoming.  The tulips, however, were putting on a great show all over the gardens.

Within the Hugs & Kisses Garden is a heart-shaped pool:

The kisses were just around the corner:

I’d like to go back again when things are in full bloom, preferably with my granddaughters so I can explore it all with them.  Maddy might be a little young for it but I think Emma would enjoy it.

Look Up: The redbud

One of my favorite springtime flowering trees is the  eastern redbud (cercis canadensis).  I first noticed the redbud in abundance (and in the wild) when we lived in West Virginia and southern Ohio.   The bark of the tree has been used to treat dysentery and the flowers can be eaten in salads.  They need sunlight to produce their blossoms, but don’t care too much for heat or sun during the summer months so they do well in partial shade.  In the spring months they can often be spotted as part of the forest undergrowth, the colors of the flowers making them pop out.

The redbud is also known as the Judas Tree because it is believed to be the type of tree on which Judas hanged himself.  The eastern redbud, however, is a different type than the redbud which grows in the Mediterranean.

I had to look up to capture these photos.  Although redbuds are not the tallest trees in the forest  (or in Hershey Gardens where I took these pictures), they are still trees and taller than me.  I didn’t realize until I looked up that the buds sometimes sprout directly from the trunk of the tree.