How lucky I was to visit the Wellington Botanic Garden two days ago, for a short time in the afternoon. It was a bright clear day. Because it is late autumn the rays of sunlight are at a lower angle, creating contrasty and dramatic effects, intensifying colours and shapes. So when I walked through the gate my attention was immediately caught by the drama of brilliant orange-red foliage in the rock garden.
Japanese maples! I love seeing these little trees, with their delicate beautifully coloured leaves. They are precious to me too because in my windy exposed garden the leaves would rapidly become a dessicated crispy brown - alas, there is no point in my trying to grow them. But what a sight!
A combination of the light and lucky timing - peak brilliance.
Further into the gardens, a collection of mature trees provides shelter and shade. Some larger Japanese maples were lighting up a path in glorious gold, orange and green.
And on a very shady bank beside a little stream, the theme of gold, orange and green was repeated - bright Japanese maple leaves beside the rich green of clivia foliage and ferns.
That night and since then - gales blowing, grey grey grey leaden skies (get the picture?) and torrential rain.
I am so happy that I seized the time and could enjoy the transient glory of this autumn foliage (koyo in Japanese.)