A winter garden in Mexico.

pow!On New Year’s Day, when everything else in San Miguel de Allende was closed (including most people’s eyes) we went up, up, up to the beautiful Charco del Ingenio Botanical Gardens. cactus base

This 100-hectare protected site includes canyons, cactii, succulents…

The real mescal plant.

The real mescal plant.

…canals, aqueducts, dams, and mills from Colonial times… stones…a still functioning dam from the 19th century, sculptures, and artwork. fish sculpture

dreamcatcherIt’s a fabulous place to walk, explore… Larry jumping rocks

and scare yourself silly if you’re so inclined to climb down a 200-foot ravine. down we go

Of course we were so inclined… and the reward was utter tranquility at the bottom. chasm



And the family that’s scared out of its wits together is knit together, right?

On solid ground!

On solid ground!

Possibly the best New Year’s Day ever. cross

(This counts as my first — and probably last — Word a Week challenge. Shamed into it — I mean INSPIRED by all my overachieving blogging friends.) cactus apples2

Happy Garden Day, y’all!cactii

21 thoughts on “A winter garden in Mexico.

  1. Love these pictures. I’m not sure I’d have been brave enough to go down that ladder. Good lord I’m proud of you Betty!
    For over 20 years I’ve wanted to go to two places: walk on the Camino and go to San Miguel de Allende. I hope to get to Mexico one of these days…

  2. Darn, that’s a gorgeous place! I’m in love with the final photo, especially! Hope you’re recovering from your year of travel, Betty! By the way, Sara and I will be in Atlanta in April, visiting Habitat friends before we leave for Ecuador. Would love to meet you!

    • I was going to ask you if you would come visit before you go??! I am in love with Ecuador and our college has a lot of programs there — PLEASE come see us/stay with us before you go! I would dearly love to meet you in person!!! And in April, I hope we’ll be around (just a trip to Colombia and Venezuela in there somewhere) … seriously, do NOT pass me by!!

  3. I’ve been going to San Miguel off and on since 1984 and did not know about that wonderful space. i will check out the Botancial Gardens next time I go!

    • You will be SO happy you did! It was kind of cold and gray the day we went and it was still spectacularly lovely — so you are in for a treat! The Gardens were only opened during the total eclipse of the sun on July 11, 1991… and expanded in 1996, so if you’ve been going over the years, it’s no wonder you’ve missed it. But boy, do you have something to look forward to! Enjoy !!

  4. Love your photos and welcome your return. And I/we welcome all seekers of beauty and peace to this special place. As an expat from Atlanta who has lived here for 8 years I am amazed each day by what we call “San Miguel moments”. Yesterday I attended the vounteer appreciation of Jovenes Adelantes -an expat NGO that provide scholarships and mentoring for local young men and women to go to and more importantly complete college -the devotion of expats to their adopted community and the appreciation of their mentees was a very touching San Miguel moment yesterday. Come on down!

    • Oh, I just wish I had had the chance to meet you, Carol — but maybe when you’re back in Atlanta?? I know that ex-pat community in SMA is so active, compassionate and generous — as it should be!!!

  5. Beautiful pictures, Betty. I especially like the spider web sculpture. But the climb down that ravine — yikes! Is there any connection between that adventure and your later post about knee surgery?

    • Nope, I didn’t hurt myself in the ravine (my knee has been killing me since September) but it did occur to me when the girls were climbing down the TWO 90-degree ladders welded to the cliff that if anybody got hurt we were going to be in a world of trouble. Luckily, it all went just fine and was quite an adventure — what a gorgeous place!! I loved all those handmade sculptures and the people in the area have placed a lot of handmade sculptures and altars all around the gardens.

  6. Beautifully put together. Beautifully expressed and the quotes at the side were the icing on the top of it all. thank you!

  7. I want to go there too. In fact, after seeing the Freda & Diego show at the High this morning, we were dreaming about renting a house there, following in your tracks.

  8. Love this. It’s now a balmy 80 plus degrees during the day in SMA, cooler at night. Candelaria, the annual plant sale, is set up in the Parque Juarez, and blooms are everywhere. Yippee!

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