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Tuesday, January 2, 2018

A brief visit to the coast of Ecuador.

Seasons greetings here are some of the final photos of my November trip to Ecuador. Happy New Year. The weather has been just this side of hanis, with nasty east wind, wet snow and freezing rain. 
The architecture of Ecuador was varied and bizarre.
Plenty of concrete and color.


It was the dry season so only a few thing were in bloom.

A gate to mimic. 
The amazing Ceiba tree, a member of the Malvaceae family.




The coastline was extremely varied, this delta was home to Ecuadorian rice production. 




Thursday, December 14, 2017

Mindo, Ecuador.

Just a brief drive to the northwest of Quito lies Mindo, a lush high elevation jungle and a different culture.   Mindo is on the Pacific Side of the Andes, a rich and to a certain extent distinct flora than that of the Amazon basin. 
Beautiful cloud forest.
Amazingly this is technically part of the city of Quito, although it's an entirely different climate and the people have a different attitude.  On our way back to Quito we gave a young kid a ride all the way to Quito for his nightly soccer practise,  an hour away via bus.

Cold water fresh off Pichincha.



Amazing new growth on a fern, looks almost like a Mahonia. 

Things you see when lawyers haven't run amok. 



Not sure what these are but they were everywhere. 

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Inga Pirca and Beyond

Introduced pine and cacti give the dry highlands a North American feel.

Fields from valley floor to mountain top. 

Inner andean dry scrubland, bromeliads and cacti.  

The king of all mono systems. 

Along the Panamerican highway. 


Looks like snow load is not an issue. 

Apparently a turtle. 



Retrieved stones, these were gathered from the temple during the colonial period, then returned.  


Typical Incan door.  
Unsurpassed masonry. 







Echinopsis in its natural habitat.

The same weeds the world over.

For all you Oxalis heads out there.

Presences. The only oval Inca temple. 

An alstroemeria doing its thing, I wonder if it knows its name in english.  

Friday, December 8, 2017

Jardin Botanico Quito

The botanical garden of Quito is in the center of the New City. The garden in side of Parque La Caroline, which is a truly wonderful park  and highly used. The botanic garden itself is a mix of botanic treasures that seem to have run slightly rampant. Sadly I did not get any photos of the Japanese garden or the amazing collection of bonsai, which consisted of mainly native specimens that were of considerable age.


Not exactly the ground cover I expected at the equator.

Phormiums were few and far between.

Ensete ventricosum running wild in the garden.


Brachyotum ledifolium 



Coriaria ruscifolia


The orchid house was brimming. 

Although it's the land of the spring the rain seems to damage certain succulents.

A wonderful bloom 

Thursday, December 7, 2017

leg 1 of journey



The end of a very long cobblestone road. 

Nasturtium land. 

An example of human habitation in the Andes. 




An Andean ghost.









I imagine this is a constant process. 







Some Gunnera or another.

Alnus acuminata.