Thursday, June 23, 2016

Ghosties In The Flower Garden

I just LOVE flowers.  Who doesn't??  The trouble is, I'm NOT good at growing them, so I torture myself by going to botanical gardens and seeing all the beauties that CAN be grown.  Yesterday Lynda and I headed back to the Idaho Penitentiary.  Yard 2 (the one outside the walls where the prisoners grew most of their food) has since become the paradise of flower gardeners.

These guys are smart ... right inside the door is this chalkboard showing you exactly what the name is and what the flower looks like.  I'll try to remember the scientific names of those I posted.
This one is a purple flower.  Really, I'm too old to remember any of these names.  Maybe a clematis?  I suppose if I'm ever going to have a garden with flowers, I'll have to settle down and not travel because SOMEONE will have to take care of them!
What's really neat about THIS botanical garden, because honestly, I'd rather see other things like museums ... what's neat is they have left the guard towers intact.  There is evidence all around that this used to be prison grounds.
Here's a beautiful _________________ ..... you fill in the correct answer because I have no idea.  Looks like a daisy to me, but it might have been the Blanket Flower (I looked back at the chalkboard).
We quickly discovered we were in the playground of the squirrels.  First we saw one in a tree being chased by another.  The more I looked, the more I saw running up and down the pathway and jumping on the prison wall before scrambling to the top.  This one is sitting on the catwalk the guards patrolled at the top of the wall.
I counted eight on this section alone.  They would squawk loudly, jump straight up in the air and play chase.  Lucky for the garden staff, they are not hole diggers!!  
This is a pretty pink and green thing .... I guess I should have taken more pictures of the name plates, although many plants didn't have them.  There were lots of little ponds and creeks everywhere, an english garden, a rose garden, even a large tree garden.  
This little guy who has recently lost his tail, crawled right out into the sun for a picture.  There were lots of critters around if we took the time to look.  
Little did we know this place is HUGE!!  The more we wandered up the hill, the more lost we got, even with map in hand.  These huge monoliths standing at several different sites, are remnants of the blocks the prisoners cut in the quarry and hauled to the prison for building construction.  All those lines are holes they drilled to split the rock.  
Daisies .... these are daisies.  Did I get it right???  They were blooming between the kids garden, the treehouse and the vegetable garden.  They've got it all here!!
Finally, in the top corner (at least what we thought was the top) was the Prison Cemetery.  I called out to Ray again, or anyone else who might want their picture taken, but no one answered.  There are many graves here, most with a concrete stone that says UNKNOWN.  Very few of the headstones are left, since people have stolen most of them.  
Here lies William R. Trent, who died at 23 years of age in the 1800's.  I tried to look up some of the names in the book I purchased, but none of the headstones matched.  Quite a few prisoners were hung in the yard and buried here, with no one knowing or caring for that matter.  Original wood headstones have all disappeared.
This is Levie Maxfield.  Some of those buried here actually worked at the prison as guards.  The oldest was 81 years old, but most were VERY young.
As we left the cemetery, we thought we were taking the trail back down the hill.  Surprise!!  We kept climbing up and up where we could look down on the prison and across the valley to see the City skyscrapers.
It was getting VERY hot and there was no water in my backpack, when we finally came upon Sacajawea.  The entire top section of the gardens are dedicated to Lewis and Clark, with plantings they described in their journals.  Now I'm hot, thirsty and have a shoe full of gravel.  Time to get out of here!!
On the way back down the hill, we found a section of big trees that usually escape fires, with tables and chairs in the cool shade of the canopy.  We stopped to rest for a minute when I spotted this garden art.  There's lots more art around, in fact there's some kind of sculpture around every corner.  This one however, was rather unique.  Those silver things are shell casings, with the "bells" (or ringers) being hand grenades.  Bet you haven't seen THAT before!!  We discussed putting yard art in our OWN yards, but this would NOT be one!!
I got back to the rig in time to play with the puppies for an hour before heading out to my Nephew Travis' house for a barbecue.  This kid can really cook!!!  Corn on the cob, chicken (not burned like I make it), pasta salad and for dessert?  Raspberry white chocolate bread pudding, made by his wife Brandi who works as a baker.  This dessert rivals the #1 Jerome Arizona Mile High Cafe bread pudding!!
On the way home, I spotted a pretty good example of the laid back atmosphere here in Boise.  The truck to my left is towing the car with a rope, right through downtown with tons of traffic making a left hand turn.  No one cared!!
Today we're off to the zoo, in spite of my desire to veg out on the couch.  Going and doing every day, ALL day, can be tiring.  Tomorrow it's fly fishing, something I've always wanted to do, and my nephew is an EXPERT!!  I'm taking advantage and hoping to at least learn how to set up my rod that's been in the closet for about fifteen years.


  1. Good fishing in Idaho,hope you catch your dinner. Do you know how to cook fish?

    1. Oh heavens no ... all I know about cooking fish is to throw it in a frying pan. Good fishing is so far from us, I doubt we will do much more than throw a line in the Boise River, just so I can learn to fly cast.

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  3. Great pictures and story as usual. One more destination for the travel list. Having a garden or travel, that's a no brainer you can always look at someone else's flowers.
    Sometimes you have to schedule a vacation from your vacation so that you can recover from the go, go, go. My current thinking is that we need to plan a down week once a month to do those things that don't get done when you are sightseeing every day. Right now it's a plan that hasn't been totally implement yet. But it works on paper. Jim M

    1. I chuckled Jim .... LOTS of my ideas work on paper, but putting them into action seems to be a problem. That does sound good however .... I've been trying for just one day a week!! Hopefully this Sunday!!