Lured by the big "Open" sign and the cheerful pink and blue cottage, we ventured into the new Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden last weekend, kids in tow. Located near Mountain Top, Phantasea is a tropical fantasyland ideally located on the cool and breezy North Side.
Phantasea Tropical Botanical Garden, which opened on February 2nd of this year, is a dream realized by Patsy Breunlin. Much of the work on the property has been done by Patsy herself thanks to her background in building and design.
As a builder living in the Caribbean for many years, Patsy knows first hand the importance of buying the right materials for the job. She proudly states that she shops at MSI because the quality of our products are simply superior. From the nails to the galvalume to the lumber, MSI is her store of choice and her first stop when building the Gardens. What Patsy has created in Phantasea exemplifies our Island Tough philosophy and we are proud of our loyal customers.
The boys couldn't keep still long enough for a photograph but were busy exploring and wandering throughout the gardens. Gravel paths supported by landscaping timbers and epoxy coated rebar meander between the trees. High between the branches are majestic orchids in full bloom and all around are succulents, bromeliads, palms and heliconia.
A lovely and restful pavilion is found midway, with a sleeping Gongalo millipede nearby. We also came across a vanilla orchid! Yes vanilla beans come from orchids! We were fascinated to learn that vanilla orchid flowers must be hand pollinated.
Much to the delight of the boys, Nancy introduces us to the carnivorous pitcher plant. It lures its prey into its sweetly-scented "pitchers" filled with water where they are trapped and consumed. A careful peek into the opening of one of the "pitchers" revealed the spindly legs of an unfortunate insect.
With big ideas and the acreage to back them up, Patsy continues to work on and expand the garden. Her three breeding peacocks (so far) will one day wander freely between the orchids and bromeliads.
When not planting, landscaping, teaching and planning, Patsy still offers her services as a builder and designer.
"Like" Phantasea on Facebook to keep informed on Patsy's future plans and workshops on a huge variety of topics. They are accepting school tours and eventually plan on hosting weddings and other activities.