Thursday, May 19, 2011
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden was big and beautiful. We happened to visit the day before the Butterfly Pavilion was to open. Bill Gendron was so kind, he let us in and explained the whole thing to us so we didn't have to come back the next day. A lot of work went into that display. And it was especially wonderful because it was California natives, just like the Garden. I have seen a few local butterflies in butterfly houses before. Mostly they were trying to get out. I have heard that the tropical butterflies are used to flying in shady understory conditions so they do better in the reduced light conditions found inside. But all the butterflies in the tent at Rancho Santa Ana seems fine inside. They must be doing something special.
This Garden also had a huge patch of pipevine and many Pipevine Swallowtails. The caterpillars were in the wander phase, walking everyplace.
I loved the woolly blue curls. Every time I turned around there was another big beautiful patch. And many mourning cloaks, too. A very special day.