If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you might have seen several of my images taken in and around the Hilo area while on the Big Island of Hawaii.

I also shared a post with some tropical images for my recent post Thursday’s #Hilo Doors with a View.

It makes sense (at least to me) that this week’s Sunday Stills theme is “tropical.”

I celebrated my spring break in Hawaii at my husband’s urging. He wanted one more week off before the summer rush begins at his work. We own a small house in up-country Hilo that needs some major repair and construction, right up hubby’s alley. Apparently working on his house is therapeutic for him.

With hubby working on the house 20 miles away, I was left to my own devices back at the B&B where we stayed. I spent two days alone working on a variety of projects, took walks, and of course, took hundreds of pictures! Did I mention the 75 degree temperatures? Hilo can be very rainy but the weather cooperated most days, with overcast skies only part of the time.

Hawaii Big Island Hamakua Coastline
View of Hamakua Coastline north of Hilo (photo was edited using Paintt filter)

While enjoying the tropical surroundings, I also had the chance to meet up with fellow blogger, Graham, from Graham’s Island. If you enjoy reading about the Big Island of Hawaii, Graham takes amazing photos while explaining something interesting about his subject.

Graham kindly offered to make the two-hour drive from the North end of the island to meet me at the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Gardens.

With cameras in tow, we walked the trails and shot oodles of flowers and plant life. One of the first flowers we spotted was this purple hibiscus hybrid called “Blue Bayou.” Stunning!

Purple hibiscus flower
“Blue Bayou” Hibiscus hybrid

A tropical garden path overgrown with flowers and plants paved the way for more sites than I could possibly see!

Pathway in the Botanical Gardens
Pathway in the Botanical Gardens

We came across this Crimson Medinilla from the Phillipines hanging like Christmas ornaments.

crimson medinilla red flower
Crimson Medinilla flowers hang like Christmas ornaments

Of course, we stopped every few feet to capture these amazing plants with our lenses. A great photographer like Graham here leans in for that special shot!

Man shooting flowers with camera
Graham getting that macro shot!

We came upon the Malaysian Bat Plant, which really is this color black!

Malaysian Bat Black Flowering Plant
Malaysian Bat Plant

Another hibiscus flower, this one a peachy-orange. Yellow hibiscus is the Hawaii state flower.

Orange hibiscus
Orange hibiscus

The iconic Hawaiian flower, the plumeria, was not in bloom quite yet, but here is one just for fun! Graham has a yearly pass to the gardens and says he sees different flowers each time he visits. There is a chance we may go back to the Big Island to work on the house this Fall, so I hope to see these gorgeous, fragrant flowers!

Walking through the gardens yielded views like this if you stopped and looked up!

Pointy, spiky tropical rain forest
Banyans and Palm Trees reach for the sky

This image of the tropical forest with its spikes, spires and jagged edges is submitted for Becky B’s last day of March Spiky Squares.

I am also sharing these banyan and palm trees with Becca’s Sunday Trees!

Here is one more beautiful little flower, an orchid perhaps?

botanical garden flower
Cute little flower…no clue as to what it is!

I’ve lost count of the many bloggers I have met in person over the last few years and was so pleased to be able to meet up with Graham in Hawaii! We had an enjoyable time and ate lunch in Hilo before he drove me back to the B&B! Visiting the botanical gardens was one of the highlights of this trip to the Big Island.

Today, I am also sharing these tropical blooms for Cee’s Flower of the Day!

April themes are available for view on my Sunday Stills page so you can plan ahead. Remember you can post any time during the week for each theme.

I can’t wait to see your tropical-themed images, poems, stories, even music this week!


my signature w/ hibiscus

105 thoughts on “Sunday Stills: A #Tropical Garden Vacation

  1. I can see why Graham has an annual pass at the botanical gardens and why he took you there! A photographer’s paradise! Hawaii is so lush that just about anywhere one can find pretty flowers.

    How is the house in Hilo coming along? I’d love to house sit or go on vacation in Hawaii one year, but not when I have work piled up. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It was a great trip, Liesbet. The house has a long way to go, Hans basically boarded it up so no one tries to camp in it, which caused some problems. Definitely a work in progress. And yes, you may get distracted and end up on aloha time while visiting.

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  2. Hawaii is lovely with something beautiful to look at around every turn. What a great place to indulge in your photography! These are beautiful pictures. That Bat plant is interesting. I don’t know that I would want it in my year, but it is unique! It would be a conversation started for sure. I have never seen plumeria in person, we were there at the wrong time for it too.

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  3. Your photography, as always, is stunning Terri. How lovely to own a home in paradise that you can escape to. We have an apartment on the Gold Coast on the ocean. I love to escape to there and soon we will be living there full time. Thank you for sharing your paradise with us at #MLSTL

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  4. Sounds like a dream trip and the weather was very kind to you! I can think of no better place to visit a Botanic Garden than the Isle of Big and you have shared an extravaganza of ‘wow’ here today. My favorite is the pouter of the Crimson Medinilla.

    I hope I have the good fortune of meeting you in person someday. Getting closer to you every day. Ahoy from Brazil

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  5. Gorgeous flower pics Terri – and how lovely to be able to spend time with another blogger where you both get to do something you love. Glad you had such and enjoyable time while you were away.
    Thanks for linking up with us at MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 🙂

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  6. Absolutely stunning photos. And I think it is very exciting for the opportunity to meet up with a fellow blogger in person. That’s wonderful you have friends all over-especially ones that have so much in common with you.Will you be sharing any renovations on your house?

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  7. Beautiful photos, Terri. The hybrid purple hibiscus is unusual. I love Hawaii and had done the island hopping before. I hope you return in the fall and share more stunning photos. #MLSTL

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  8. Oh, Terri, how you inspire this fledgling photographer. I can almost smell the plumeria from here. That bat plant is very aptly named. My second graders always studied bats. Would have enjoyed sharing your photo with them. Nature is truly amazing. And you capture it so well, my friend.

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  9. Hi Terri! Count me in as one of the fortunate ones who has gotten together IRL with you. And it looks like you had a wonderful break, saw some gorgeous flowers and landscapes and I hope just relaxed and enjoyed yourself! I think we all LOVE Hawaii so any chance to see beautiful photos of it remind us of all the times we have been fortunate to visit too. Thank you! ~Kathy

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  10. Thanks for the kind words, and I’m glad you enjoyed your visit. It was nice meeting you and having a fun tour of the gardens. You have some great shots from the garden (well, except for the old duffer getting the way in one of them, of course!). I almost went with the Crimson Medinilla but decided on this orchid: https://grahamsisland.com/2019/03/31/coconut-orchid/. The flower in the bottom photo is some kind of ginger, don’t know exactly which one. I hope you’re happily settling back into your regular world back in Sacremento.

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      1. Hi Terri
        Maui is our island of choice. But it’s all beautiful. I love all of the flower photos especially the one of the Crimson Medinilla. For aromatherapy it’s definitely Plumeria

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I know what you mean. I washed my car yesterday. Shiny clean. Go out this a.m. it’s completely covered in the green yellow dust that will soon be making my eyes water!

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      1. Definitely – any kind of fun really. Right now I’m listening to my twins cry like it’s the end of the world, first one for 45 min then the other one woke up… I guess no sleep tonight either, as usual! if I can muster up the energy, I’ll definitely participate!

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  12. Terri, I’m really enjoying these jaunts around Hawaii, and thank you for the gorgeous photos. I’ve lived in Hawaii twice as a kid, both times on Oahu. We moved to the mainland (California) on my 13th birthday, and I’ve never returned, not even for a visit. But I’m planning to take my entire family in summer 2020, to Kauai or Maui – friends campaigning for each. We’ll have 4 kids from ages 5 to 15, so taking that into consideration.

    Anyway, your photos are tantalizing. I adore the pic of Hamakua Coast, with touches of teal and mauve in the ocean. The Blue Bayou hibiscus is the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, and I love the plumeria as well – special significance for me. My favorite photo is of the path into the botanical gardens: layered lights and darks, perfect composition, graceful arcs of plants leading us through. Yes, I’ll go.

    You and hubby have chosen a wonderful place to retire, and it seems he’s making the new house ready for his bride.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, thank you for your uplifting words, Shari! We may or may not retire there, but we’ll get the house ready for rental at least. I’m excited for you that you are going back to your childhood home. I was obsessed with all things Hawaii as a young adult. I do want to visit Kauai and Maui some day, we’ll have to plan some island hops. A friend of mine tells me she ordered plumeria from a reputable seller on Amazon and it is flourishing here in Sacramento! So guess what I ordered? Yay!

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  13. Ah Hawaii..,,,if only it weren’t so far away! I have very fond memories of my visits but haven’t been in years. Beautiful images Terri. And I agree it’s been great fun to meet up with bloggers these past few years!

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  14. Wow, what a beautiful place filled with fantastic pieces of mother nature. The colours are glorious, Terri, but tell us about the aroma and the sounds of the place, too. Having never been to anywhere quite like Hawaii, I can only imagine what they were like. Those flowers must have smelt wonderful.
    So pleased that you met up with Graham. Blogging makes our world seem like a smaller place than it is. Distance doesn’t become a problem, whilst friendships blossom.

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    1. Funny, Hugh, not as much in the sound and aroma department. The air smelled fresh of course, and I could hear birds…perhaps I got used to it all after being on the island for a few days. It was great meeting Graham in person. He really knows his stuff…a true journalist!

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      1. I know what you mean, Terri. When we first moved to live by the coast, the noise of the seagulls kept us awake. Now, we don’t notice them anymore. The same can be said of when I lived in London. I could often hear the underground trains rumbling under the various houses I live in, but I would soon forget the noise was there. When I had family staying, they always heard every single tube train!

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