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Trip blooms from powers of persuasion
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Forsyth County News

When my good friend Beth invited Paul and I to go to the Botanical Gardens with her and her husband, I immediately accepted.

I hadn’t been in decades and thought a day in the city with two good friends would be fun. I also thought it would remind me that winter was truly on the way out.

Of course, Mr. Robinson was probably not going to be all that thrilled with the idea, but I’m a persuasive person.

I knew I was in trouble when I broached the subject and he laughed. After some major convincing, and a few threats, he agreed to the outing.

We met Beth and William and drove to the city together. After a delicious lunch, we headed to the Botanical Gardens, which has been around since the early 1970s.

Because it was February, there were many plants still underground or not yet planted. However, even with the barrenness, the gardens were beautiful and we had a great time.

I absolutely loved the greenhouses. So many amazing plants, trees, vines and flowers. I wandered around in awe, drinking in the “greenness” of it all. And also loving the fact that I had to take off my coat and still felt a little sweaty.

Since it was Orchid Days, or something to that effect, there were many people there photographing the beautiful orchids.

I have great respect for orchids, because they pretty much come with a death sentence. I have murdered more than I want to admit, so it was a treat to see so many healthy ones.

I loved learning that these delicate flowers inspired famous artists such as Monet, one of my favorites.

I didn’t realize how many things the gardens offer. They have a lot of offerings for children and adults.

For children, there are classes about their adorable frogs (these really are cute, especially because they are in glass cases), the upcoming Earth Day and natural egg dyeing.

Apparently, there are plants that contain dyes perfect for Easter eggs. I have such fond memories of dyeing eggs with our children. It was so sad when our youngest said he didn’t want to dye them one year.

I looked pretty pathetic as I sat alone at the kitchen table dyeing a few boiled eggs. If that class weren’t just for children, I might sign up.

They also have a lot of storytellers who use puppets and other props to entertain children, all while educating them about plants, flowers and all things nature.

The adult classes look interesting too. There are some about caring for orchids (I would definitely take that one before investing in another one of those flowers), Tai Chi and success with roses. Perhaps best of all, there also are cooking demonstrations.

Yes, it is a bit of a hike getting to the Botanical Gardens. And Atlanta traffic has never been more brutal. Still, this is a great place to take a day trip.

If you have children or grandchildren, plan a day. Pack a picnic lunch, blanket, some outdoor playthings and water. Whatever you do, don’t forget the camera.

At the end of the day, I was ready to sign up for season passes. Paul said he enjoyed it, but didn’t agree to become members.

I’m not worried. As I said before, I am a persuasive person.


Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at