Rhododendron Garden Tour: Water Features [21 Photos]
Picturesque photos of elegant and calming outdoor water features built into the landscape.
All of these photographs are my own. I had collected these photos last year (April 2019) when I visited the Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden in Portland, Oregon.
The mirror ponds of the garden do a wonderful job of transcending a person's point of view. Tunnel-focus on our own stressful social circles disappear as we gaze into the pond that transports our vision to the things reflecting above, lurking below, and presently floating on the surface.
Although Mallard ducks are the most common, once in a while the curly feathers painted on the head of another type of duck suddenly appears. Mallards seem to be the most friendly type though. Their love for each other is overflowing, and they often bring their families to greet gentle children and kind adults.
Ducks constantly chatter with quiet squawks in a game of Marco Polo. This is their sophisticated radar tracking system to monitor all of their mates nearby.
Somehow all of the waterways in this park are interconnected. Animal habitats coexist better this way. Water stays neutralized by water life and plants that support each other with nutritious food sources. The ducks really do not need to be fed with so many docile insects skipping across the surface of the water.
Geese especially enjoy finding fallen trees in the waterways. Their long legs with webbed feet are adapted for climbing smooth, slick surfaces. A few inches above the water, these logs act as a perch so they can remains still enough to watch their surroundings. They can camouflage into their surroundings as they watch for predators. Up above in the sky, where the hawks look down from, goose white feathers blend in with the glarry sun that reflects off the water surface.
Not far off the water reeds provide safety to hide. Geese can also hide their egg nests in these safer areas. Even sugar-crazed children would be hard-pressed find the Easter eggs in these hard to reach swamps.
Now we get a glimpse of the stepped waterfalls. Not monstrous in size. Gentle and lightly babbling, these humble water features provide no hazard to people or animals. It is built into the hillside a bit to discourage people from playing in it directly. People often linger here to enjoy the peaceful ambiance of the hidden wonder.
Below the pond ripples away the reverberations of the pelting falls. The secluded glade becomes a mysterious fantasy island wishing pond.
The wooden walkway that crosses the water provides a sturdy avenue for walkers to traverse the expansive pond. One both sides the water is wide open, providing plenty of space for waterfowl to enjoy themselves without being bothered.
Often times the ducks become tame and well-adapted to interact with walkers. By simply walking around on the gravel paths, they know that showing off their feathers will draw in crowds.
Surely someone in the crowd will likely have some seeds to share.
The ticket booth offers packets of ducks seeds for sale. Many people incorrectly think stale or fresh bread is a good to feed to ducks. Sure ducks enjoy the taste, however, it really is not safe for ducks to eat bread because it is hard for them to digest. Ducks might enjoy sunflower seeds or raisins as a simpler alternative.
Around the stepped waterfalls is a jungle paradise of ferns and long-leaf rhododendrons providing constant dappled shade. The falling water adds oxygen to the ponds and cleanses impurities out, such as bacteria.
The geese and the ducks are often found in separate groups from each other. It is easy to tell which ones are part of the same family units, because the young ones will often follow their parents. Mates will stay nearer to eachother than they would stand to other birds. Would not want the other to become jealous. They are very considerate birds.
Hear we see the wonderful light effects as gravity pulls the water down over the smooth rocks. Moss lightly textures the rock with green fuzz.
Along the banks, the water is often only a few inches deep. It allows for calmer water areas where the water is almost completely still. The river current is non-existent here. Pond water, often greenish-brown becomes more clear. It's easier for ducks to see through in these shallow spaces. Anything crawling on the pond floor here would become a quick, tasty meal for the ducks. The ducks keep the area neat and clean.
The baby geese were especially popular for the crowds on this day. The parents will often collect soft foods in their beaks and then feed their babies manually by sliding the morsel into the hungry gullet of their eager children. Amazingly, the geese rarely scream and wail like the human babies do.
The parents let out a loud honk once in a while, which is a unique sound their babies will recognize as their own parent. If the babies ever become separated, they will chirp and listen for their parents call to find their way back.
Build or visit a water paradise, and surely geese and ducks will soon make a home there. They don't take up much room or require any assistance. Friendly birds will make their homes near the water, and generations of waterfowl will continue to take care of the land forevermore.
Thank you for viewing my collection of photos.
There are many more photos in this collection I will be soon releasing, and I have categorized them by topic.
Rhododendron Garden Tour
- Flowers Up-Close
- Full Sized Flowering Shrubs
- Scenic Views
- Landscape Designs
- Water Features
- Low Growing Plants
As always, comments are welcome below.
Painters, please be my guest and use any of these photos to inspire artwork.
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