Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake

Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake
Sunrise over Lower Red Rock Lake

Sunday, May 18, 2014

A Stroll Through Herman Park

I'm selling my two Cannon lenses. I no longer want to haul them around, since I seldom use them. A guy called about my Sigma 50-500.  He lived in Humble, so I offered to meet him halfway. After we met, (and I sold him the lens) I went on to Herman Park and took a stroll and then went to the 3-D Galapagos movie.

The park was overrun with thousands of school children. So I quickly went towards the more remote areas of the park. I came upon a strange structure.  It appeared to be a house made of sticks, but when I went inside it, it was a kind of a maze. When I got home I found it is called Boogie Woogie.  It was designed by Patrick Dougherty who is famous for designing quasi-architectural structures out of twigs. I was built with the help of 150 volunteers and ten truck-loads of invasive tallow tree saplings. It will remain here a few years.

View from outside

There are lots of choices for how to move around inside

Wind Waves - another art-in-the-park piece

The next big change I noticed was that there were no gardens - no rose garden, herb garden, native plant garden, wetlands garden, nada. Even the building where garden clubs used to meet is gone. Instead there is a big bare area, behind a fence, with lots of tarp posters with pictures and information about what will be coming to these combined spaces.  This is a fifteen -acre area, so it will look dramatically different in the fall. Can't wait to get to visit the completed garden.


Bare space is being modified


And supposedly, in October, 2014, it will look like this. 

So there were very few flowers anywhere.  I found a few late bloomers in the Japanese garden where I also enjoyed the green landscape, with it's myriad textures and contrasts.


Society Garlic almost blooming


The waterfall pond and streams add tranquility and are enjoyed by both  birds and people.

A fledgling blue jay 

The new growth on the pines was  lovely close-up


Daylilies were one of the few blooming plants in the Japanese garden

I continued my walk into the native plantings area of the park. I found black-bellied whistling ducks, along with Muscovy ducks, mallard ducks and mallard/Peking duck crosses. There were also hords of grackles and pigeons, and a group of trees held several species of migrating warblers.


In the native area, this hover fly was enjoying these flowers.

As I walked around the lake, I enjoyed the view of the entrance of the park with high rises behind it and visitors interacting with the place and the animals.


View across the lake to the entrance area

Family  feeding the pigeons

I stopped  for a few minutes at Miller Theatre and joined hundreds of children watching an operatic version of Rapunzel. This was the destination for some of the throngs of children but other school groups were having lunch, and when I went to the Galapagos movie, I was the only adult there that wasn't monitoring children.  And they were packed into the museum area. (Miller Theatre has totally free productions from many of the art venues in Houston. Check out this year's schedule here.  I've always loved going to the productions and sitting on a blanket or chairs on the hillside.


Miller Theatre and the hill behind it used by viewers


Kids watching Rapunzel

 If you live in the Houston, Texas Area and want to learn more about Herman Park, click here to read their newsletters. Herman Park also houses the Houston Zoo and the Houston Museum of Natural Science so it has always been one of my favorite destinations. The park is celebrating its Centennial Anniversary this year and is really sprucing itself up with lots of exciting new art and gardens, as well as repairing damage to trails, and wild areas.

Oh yes, If you need  a 100 mm Canon image-stabilized macro, I have a deal for you. Lens is in new condition and takes wonderful macro pictures. 

When this blog comes out, I'll be visiting my my daughter and family in the Texas Hill Country. Then it's on to Montana.  Getting excited!  I  may not be able to get a post out next week since I'll be traveling.   But I'll catch you up on my adventures as soon as I can. I plan to visit the Garden of the Gods in Colorado and will be living in the most beautiful of wildlife refuges.