I may have grown up on the east coast but I’ve lived in Wisconsin for most of my life and I totally consider myself a Midwest girl. My German immigrant parents landed in NJ in 1956 but when my dad retired, they were Florida bound without any hesitation. So I now get to spend several weeks a year in the Sunshine State. While most people would be thrilled about this, I am just not a fan. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of things about Florida that I love…the sun, the beach, the botanical gardens. The heat and humidity? Well, that I just loathe! A hot, sticky day manages to put a damper on everything. Give me a cool Midwest breeze any day!

Thankfully, it’s been unseasonably cool this visit. As I write this morning it’s 45* heading for a high of 70. That’s just about perfect for me. The weather has also agreed with the Azaleas which are spectacular this year. I suppose Irma and a wet Fall may have had something to do with it as well. Just take a look at these blooms from the Bok Tower Gardens.

Because my parents moved to the Orlando area, I now spend much of my time there visiting my mom at Lutheran Haven, an amazing retirement community in Oviedo where there is never a lack of flora.

I’ve had great fun learning about Florida’s plants and flowers. My mom has always been an amazing gardener and at 87, still maintains a small garden. Yesterday we visited Lukas Nursery which is right across the street and where I always manage to find a little something to bring home. This time a pink Bouganvilla and Rosemary caught my eye.

I’m still here for a few more days so I’ll surely find some more treasures to share!

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