“Paignton Zoo Environmental Park is a collection of both plants and animals; it is a botanical as well as a zoological garden. Plants are the living powerhouse of the planet. Leaves convert energy from the sun into foods. Without plants there would be no animals. All animals, from insects to humans, depend on plants. The gardens at the zoo are both fascinating and beautiful. The collection contains some of the most spectacular plants in the world, and some of the rarest, which are exhibited alongside the animals of the world.”
I have quoted from the guide book to the zoo, and I admit, with so many wonderful animals to see, from the smallest insects to the tallest giraffes, it is easy to overlook the botanical nature of the park’s 75 acres.
I’m no botanist but this morning, on our walk around the zoo – wonderful to be able to walk in almost, but not quite, isolated splendour, holidaymakers now having returned to their homes and local children at school – we were able to admire some of the lovely trees and plants.
We have a small acer in a pot in our garden. I wonder how long it will take before it grows to this size?
We also visited some of the animals. It’s a long time since we visited the parrots, and I’m always amazed at their brilliantly coloured plumage.
This pair were not as close to us as this photo would indicate, but high up in their enclosure some distance away, so I zoomed to get this shot. But what gorgeous colours they are.
Who says blue and green should never be seen? This fellow (above) has some dark navy features under his make coat of green.
What fabulous reds on this bird – he would never have to fear about blushing if he were embarrassed, would he? No one would ever notice.
This notice was on the wire of the parrot enclosure
Indeed, one parrot (not one I’ve photographed) ‘said’ what sounded to be “Hello” to us as we came into view. I expect he was just happy to see someone on such a damp and dismal Monday morning!
We also visited the Reptile Nursery, where some of the ‘baby’ reptiles could be seen, including this wonderful Monitor Lizard – again I loved the colours of his skin.
I don’t know whether he was simply breathing or yawning!
But after about 3/4 hr we found that the weather was worsening and so we decided to call it a day – we’d enjoyed our walk even though by now our raincoats were rather wet – and so made our way back to our car and from there we decided to pop down to the Palace Hotel for hot chocolate, a little inexpensive treat on such a dismal day.
By the time I fished my camera out of my bag, husband had already snaffled a biscuit …
We then went home and not long afterwards my latest parcel from Marks & Spencer arrived, a jumper in Ochre and one in Dark Marine, both of them in a smaller size than the Emerald and Chilli ones I bought last week. And they fit perfectly. I’ve now sent for the Emerald in a smaller size, but unfortunately, the Chilli is out of stock.
Here they are with some scarves, one of which I put with the Emerald and with the Chilli jumper last week (it has so many colours in it that go with all these jumpers.) Strangely enough, the jumper I wasn’t quite sure about – the Dark Marine – suits me the best.
Once I had finished trying on these new jumpers I made soup for a late lunch: leek & potato. This takes about five minutes to prepare and 30 minutes to cook, a really easy, fairly fast food. Ingredients: 1 large white onion, 2 medium potatoes, 2 leeks, 4 veggie Oxo cubes, boiling water, and when ready to blend, a good dollop of creme fraiche (I didn’t completely blend, but left some chunks of potato and leek in the soup). To serve with it, grated cheddar cheese and some crusty baguette.
As we wanted to listen to the News on TV, we had the soup on trays on our knees in the sitting room. Just what we needed on what has turned into a chilly, very damp and dark autumn day.
Until next time.