Wednesday, April 14

The Flowering Bridge, Lake Lure NC

When the Rocky Broad River Bridge closed to traffic in 2011, the community was faced with a decision, tear the historic bridge out, or find another way to preserve the bridge. The community chose to find another use. They decided on a 155 foot garden: I think that qualifies for some major upcycling! I see so many abandoned bridges across my travels. I wish that more communities would see the potential and make them bridges to community.

These gardens are truly wonderful. Different gardens were done by different groups and still somehow the garden is a cohesive botanical wonder. There is a children’s fairy garden, there are herbs, there are botanical sculptures and so much more. As we wandered through, we both found plants we loved, some, like Cuphea llavea ‘Georgia Scarlet’ or bat-faced flower, were a cherished rediscovery.

The bridge spans the French Broad river at a particularly serene spot. Kayakers paddled past while we explored each section of the garden. We thought about coming back at night, the garden is lit and geared for a special “night garden” effect, but time was short. We will be back.

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