I love botanical gardens (this should not really come as a surprise given the nature (literally) of this blog). But I was not prepared for how excited I would be about the Botanical gardens in Funchal.
Since the island has quite a tropical climate, the botanical gardens have a huge section dedicated just to succulents and cacti which is simply outdoors, with the plants growing directly in the ground.
The best thing was that we went at the end of the afternoon, near closing time and by the end of our visit we were all alone in the gardens. It was wonderful to be free to observe all the plants at our leisure, in the warm light of the magic-hour sun.
There were so many different species, I walked around several times to try and see it all. I couldn’t get enough of the amazing colours and details. Like the symmetry of the plant above, and like these little red spikes all along the outside of the leaves of the plant hereunder.
Or this little guy below who looks to me like a monster’s paw with many tiny claws on it. It’s fascinating how so much colour can just emerges from a stump that looks grey and dried-up…