Jardin Botanique (Montréal)

We loved the international installations at the Botanical Gardens two years ago. They were in competition and the exhibits were stunning. As a result, we didn’t spend much time in the permanent features of the Jardin Botanique. This time there are no temporary exhibits so we experience the glory of this living green space for what it is.

We begin in the Couryard of the Senses where the wide variety of leaf textures can be felt, the brilliant colours can be seen and the array of scents can be smelled (easily the best part). I wish I brought a notebook to record some of the original aromas as I think I could infuse many of these in beer pretty effectively.

Then it is plot after plot of edible plants. Again, the variety is stunning. My confidence in the preservation of spectral horticulture grows. Marshmallow plant whose root was the original flavour and bond in marshmallows. Amaranth flowers whose seeds are ground into powder for curry. Giant chives. Wild ginger. Hops.

Add to that a wide variety of textile plants, dye plants, grains, spices, tobacco, cabbages, oil producing plants, etc.

Amber says that if we ever live in Montreal again, we’ll have to get a year pass. I agree. I could spend an hour every morning learning about these riches.

Very fascinating garden of toxic and poisonous plants. Rhubarb leaves make the cut and so does the castor bean – better known today as ricin because of its appearance in Breaking Bad.

It’s not surprising that many, many areas in the garden are set up for portraiture.

The Gardens are located in the Olympic complex – the olympic stadium, biodôme, planetarium, and insectarium are all connected via walking paths.

We spend a solid 30 minutes with our mouths agape at the insectarium. It has an impressive collection of pinned insects as well as freakishly large live insects in aquariums.

The leaf-cutter ants are especially great as they move from one box to another over some branches.

A great example of the horror of motherhood.

I don’t remember what this is, but it’s tiny, useless red wings are funny.

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