See Eight Spectacular Topiaries Photographed in Florida
En Plein Air Topiary at Cypress Gardens
Displayed here will be eight different outdoor topiaries that were photographed in the State of Florida on various vacation trips enjoyed many years ago.
Those vacation trips were at different times of the year and were taken in two different locations. I enjoyed getting to see the magnificent Cypress Gardens with my mother one year while we were on our way to visit an aunt and uncle of mine who used to live in Florida for a good part of every year.
The first four topiaries displayed here were in Cypress Gardens and the last four were taken at Walt Disney World at a different time.
See some En Plein Air Artwork created on the spot by James Gurney
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"Winter Light" , plein air oil painting by Andy Dolphin
En Plein Air Topiary
There were numerous imaginative and beautiful topiaries that my mother and I got to view when we visited the most spectacular Cypress Gardens in Winter Haven, Florida many years ago. For those of you who missed seeing Cypress Gardens as it was, the location has since been turned into a Legoland.
The grounds were magnificent and as we were walking along one of the paths adjacent to water we discovered this hoop skirted lady painting out in the open air which is the meaning of the French term, en plain air.
Of course since she was in topiary form, her painting reflected what a real hoop skirted lady might have been capturing on canvas, that of the natural scenery in front of her.
Painting outside on location where one can appreciate the natural light became very popular with many famous artists such as Degas, Claude Monet, August Renoir and Winslow Homer just to mention a few. Those and other artists most often painted the everyday scenery whether it was fields with haystacks, boating scenes or people doing the mundane chores or celebrations of life.
There are numerous organizations of artists which still advocate that type of open air painting even today. Have you ever created any en plein air artwork?
Bird and Basket Topiaries at Cypress Gardens
These are easier to care for than the real versions which demand constant attention to keep in shape.
Cypress Gardens Topiaries
The bird and basket topiary above as well as the horse drawn carriage with driver topiaries below were also viewed in Cypress Gardens.
I purposely disguised the two little girl's faces who were seated in the carriage.
They were both darling little girls and appeared to be sisters.
Horse Drawn Carriage Topiary at Cypress Gardens
Bears performing in a circus with horses
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Circus Trainer with Dancing Bear Topiary at Cypress Gardens
Most of you know that topiaries are plants that are clipped and maintained to resemble certain designs and appearances. It takes lots of work to keep them in shape! They may be free form designs or ones made to look like people, animals or other recognizable configurations.
This duo of what was probably supposed to be a circus trainer and his dancing bear was at Cypress Gardens many years ago when my mother and I visited that fabulous site in Winter Haven, Florida.
I could have edited and cut out the people in the photo but purposely left them so that viewers could appreciate the size of these topiaries.
Do you think it is fair to train wild animals to act and perform in circuses?
Dancing bear topiary with trainer at Cypress Gardens
Swan topiary at Walt Disney World
The Life of Swans (with gorgeous photography & music)
The Ugly Duckling (Modern Classics of Hans Christian Anderson)
Swan Topiary at Walt Disney World and Tie to Hans Christian Andersen
Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida is a wondrous place not only because of all of the fabulous rides, restaurants and entertainment, but it also has beautifully landscaped grounds which include a variety of plants and those trained into various topiary guises.
Whether one is interested in gardening or not, this swan topiary and others sprinkled amidst the vast grounds is a delight to the eye.
Hans Christian Andersen in the year 1843 wrote the tale of a homely bird which was tormented by his fellow barnyard buddies for his appearance. Anyone familiar with the story of “The Ugly Duckling” knows that this harrowed bird turns out in the end to be a most beautiful swan.
Walt Disney took that fairy tale and created an animated black and white cartoon in 1931 which was then made into Technicolor by 1939 winning that year’s Academy Award for the category of best short subject.
Did you know that swans typically mate for life? Their youngsters are called cygnets and usually number from 3 to 8 in what is called a clutch. They are among the largest of birds that fly and when in flight they are called a wedge. On the ground a group of swans are called a bevy. Now, don’t you feel a bit smarter today?
Mary Poppins topiary at WDW
Mary Poppins - A Spoonful of Sugar
Chim Chim Cher-ee (from "Mary Poppins"
Mary Poppins Topiary
This creation of Mary Poppins is another one of the fabulous topiaries that we viewed on the wonderfully landscaped grounds located at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
Anyone who has seen the 1964 movie of Mary Poppins starring Julie Andrews (who won an Academy Award for her performance as best actress) would immediately recognize this carefully clipped topiary of the nanny holding her umbrella and suitcase.
The fanciful tale was first told in a series of 8 books written by P. L. Travers. The Banks family needed a replacement nanny for their children. Mary Poppins is transported by a forceful wind to their very house at just the right moment in time and is hired.
She carefully tended the children and magically changed all of their lives until she felt as though she was no longer needed and another family needed her more. At that point she flew off into the wind using her umbrella above her catching the wind and guiding her to her next assignment.
Naturally there are many other cute elements to this story. Dick Van Dyke plays her friend Bert and the song “Chim Chim Cher-ee” is catchy and once heard is not easy to forget.
Are you familiar with this cute story?
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Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs topiary at Walt Disney World
Disney's Six of the Seven Dwarfs
This should delight any child who has grown up hearing the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as I did.
Snow White and Seven Dwarfs Topiary
The cute fable of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is memorialized in a series of clever topiaries at Walt Disney World in central Florida. I took this photo many years ago when my mother, niece and I spent five days there taking in as many of the sites as we could in that allotted time.
Did you know that the animated film produced by Walt Disney Productions in 1937 was actually based upon a German fairy tale? It is true! It was created by the Brothers Grimm.
Anyone who has ever seen that cute film with the beautiful Snow White, the evil and jealous stepmother, the woodland creatures, the seven dwarfs and the kiss by a prince which awakens Snow White from a perpetual sleep after she bit into a poisoned apple is not likely to forget it.
The distinctive dwarf personalities perfectly suited their names which are the following:
- Grumpy and
Some days I can relate to some of those characteristics. How about you? Ha!
Walt Disney World Sea Serpent topiary
Topiaries in Florida
There were many more topiaries at both locations than merely the eight featured here, but this gives you some idea of the marvelous creations and work executed by the landscape ground workers at both places in Florida.
Do you enjoy seeing topiaries in your part of the world? Perhaps you even have some in your own garden?
I'll be looking forward to your comments!
Locations in Florida where these photos of topiaries were taken.
© 2015 Peggy Woods
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