Only the “greenhouses” aren’t green — they’re white!
Backing up a little, the two elite women’s colleges in the Pioneer Valley, Smith and Mount Holyoke, both do their bit to cheer up Valley residents in March with Spring Bulb Shows. Smith’s show is grander, Mount Holyoke’s is more intimate, but they’re both wonderful, bringing — are you ready? — a breath of spring to a region that’s been under a sentence of winter for what seems about now like eternity.
We visited the greenhouse at Mount Holyoke on Saturday, breathed our fill of hyacinths and freesias, reveled in the wonderful colors, and of course went to town taking photographs. It was only when I was looking at the photos back on the computer that I realized that the greenhouses —- hey, that’s what they’re called, right? — in fact are white. The cast iron, heavily glassed structures, with their mid-nineteenth century architectural reminiscences, are considered only a background for the wonders within. But somehow, this time, my eye was caught by how the structure backed up, or framed, or set off, the flowers in an unobtrusive, but crucial way. So my selection for you is not the gorgeousness of color, but the whiteness of the sheltering structures themselves:
Reflections in a Pool —
Red on the White —
White on White —-
Raising the Roof —
I know I could have posted these as a gallery, but I’ve chosen instead to salute them one by one, as they slowly revealed themselves to me back at home. (If you want to see another unusual photo from the white greenhouse, take a look over at sister blog View from the Woods.)