Another week, another flower garden!
It must be spring in the Willamette Valley! Everything's blooming and beautiful and apparently I've made it my mission to check out all the unique flower gardens in our area. But I guess I'll sacrifice myself for the greater good, wouldn't want anyone driving an hour out of their way just to be bummed out by some dud blooms.
The most recent stop on my garden journey was the rhododendron garden at Hendricks Park in Eugene. Just like the tulip festival, this was also my mom's idea (thanks mom!), I can't take the credit. And also, like last time, Evey tagged along for the ride! We ended up only being there for an hour or so, I'm sure we could have taken more time to roam but it was nearing lunchtime and Evey's inner hangry four year old self was starting to loom.
Honestly, I don't know that much about Eugene. It was the first place my parents lived when they moved to Oregon in the late 70's and my older brother Alex was born there. So I guess you could say it holds a little bit of family history for us (and a really good Nike investment story too, but that's for another time). My own experience doesn't extend too far past visiting friends that went to UO back in my college days and coffee deliveries in my adulting days. Needless to say Hendricks park was pretty unknown to me but everyone I've talked to that's pretty familiar with Eugene seems to have heard of it.
After doing a little bit of research I think it'd be safe to say that what Forest Park is to Portland, Hendricks Park is to Eugene. It's in the city but features an expansive 12 mile ridgeline hike with views of Eugene, sitting on a sum total of 80 acres. The rhododendron garden is apparently world famous amongst people in the know in the rhododendron lovers world. The garden was established in 1951 and boasts over 6,000 exquisite plants, rhododendrons being the primary eye candy, of course. And although they're not my favorite flower, seeing so many different varieties and colors was pretty incredible. Plus you get to walk through a rainforest!
If you ever find yourself down in Eugene with some time to spare, checkout Hendricks Park. Even if the rhodies aren't blooming, the park itself is pretty beautiful. I wish I had more time to explore, next time! And if you end up really hungry afterwards like Evey did, check out locally owned Sabai and get the Vietnamese wings. They never disappoint!