Primary on the list was to visit all the Antoni Gaudi buildings that we could. Gaudi is called an architect but truly he is a visionary. His career spanned the late 1800's into the early 20th century of the Modernist Period or Art Nouveau period. He had luck on his side as he found his patron and client in Eusebi Guell early in his career. The homes and other buildings such as the Basilica Sagrada Familia could not be built today as they involve immense skilled labor not to mention high quality and expensive woods, stones, glass etc. For a gardener or naturalist, however, Gaudi's works are a joy to behold. Nature is part of his design whether it is the swirl of a shell or an obvious creature like the salamander.
Let's have a stroll through the gardens of Guell Park.
|Coming in from the hills on the west|
The main building in the park is by the front entrance. It is a complicated structure that serves many purposes. First you are greeted by a large staircase with the dragon that is a fountain which flows to a pool below him.
|This is the ceiling of the hypostyle. Natural organic forms in abundance|
We move on to another area. This a courtyard with columns of quite a different sort. Gone are the fluted columns and medallions of colour that represent stars ? shells ? and we are surrounded by rock and stone.
|Close up of the planters on top. They are filled with succulents like agave and yucca.|
The inner courtyard below is made to resemble trees. Each column is made of stone and each one is individual from the others. Walking paths are above the courtyard and provide the shrubbery that is the trees canopies.
In the photo below, the columns create a wonderful covered portico and are of course skillfully arched.
|Lady with pot on her head|
The next photos are of some of the flowering plants we saw. Unfortunately I still don't know what they are - I had intended to try and research Spain's flora but never did. These were plants that we saw in many areas in this park and others.
|The blue is ipomea or morning glory.|
|Agave's in the dry soil|
|These were in planters throughout the city as well|
|A soft pale blue. Looks phlox - like|
|This is a stunning flower|
|Very pretty too. Notice that a lot of the foliage is greyish which tells you how little water they get.|
|Flowering agave. Unfortunately too high to see the flower. I am standing at the same level as the plant in earth.|
Barcelona is a beautiful city in Spain. We loved every minute and hope to return one day as we do for Amsterdam. Next time I will buy a book on the Spanish flora so I know what I am looking at.