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Pohnpei - "The Garden Island of Micronesia"

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

I'mmmmmmBaaaaack! Ha - and I bet you were hoping that you were rid of me! Not to be, I'm afraid. I decided that so many people might not be interested in these pics and stories that I would give them their own little thread. So, I hope you don't mind if I share some of this beautiful garden island with you.

This was the view from the "long house" the communal dining room, restaurant, meeting room - relaxing place, of our hotel which was on a rise about 400 ft. above sea level. Pohnpei has a fringe reef, which basically means that the area immediately surrounding the island is lagoon, then beyond the reef is ocean. The large rock formation in the background is Sochez Rock - the major landmark of this island.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Here's another shot off the long house. You can see that unlike many other islands - Pohnpei does not have a lot of beach. It is pretty much jungle/rain forest right to the waters edge.

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Well, have I mentioned how much I enjoy using our island computer service?????? Guess, I'll try that one again.....

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

JB and I are trying out a little metaphotography here. I should have gotten the pic he was taking of the gingers right outside our unit, but instead I just got him. Hmmmm, must have been holding my mouth in the wrong position or something. We were in these individual "huts" that you see here (well, almost see), thatched roofs, one main room with netting on the windows - no glass - a bathroom and a shower. Mosquito netting over the beds, but didn't really need it - bugs weren't much of a problem except down by the mangrove swamps.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This is one path down from the long house to our unit....we were actually further down than the two you can see in this photo. I have a close up of that fern wall on the right, and also many more of the orange beauty on the left.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

These wild orchids are growing all over the island - everywhere - just jeering at me and saying "nanny nanny poo poo"....I plead and coax and bribe my orchids to get one stem of blooms....and here these guys are all over the place. did I mention that they are everywhere?

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This is not a great picture, but I found it interesting that right in the middle of all this automotive mess, was this tall beautiful orchid. Have I mentioned that they have an omnipresent quality to them?

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Gingers of all types and varieties were common on the island. This pink is just a glimpse ...

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This Poinciana just left us breathless - its a bush, not a tree - but the flowers are pink! pink with a touch of yellow/orange! It was beautiful - and I must admit, I couldn't resist gathering a few of the seed pods.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

a close up:

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Right across the street from the glorious pink one, was this yellow. The only yellow I have ever seen is the "dwarf". Right!

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Great Pictures Shari .
I'm 30 Kilometres from the ocean.
I only get scenes like that when I drive Down to it .
So you are very lucky .

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

That's my friend Charlie - she's short, but not that short. No dwarf above. More pink ginger - the building in the background is the 2nd floor of the house!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Hiya Kell! Just had to include all the ginger pics - thought of you every time I saw one! More to come. Am I posting too much do ya think?

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Went to lunch at a place called the OceanView.....this was the patio....think it was aptly named???

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Not at all Shari .
A pic. Is worth a thousand words .
Keep em coming WE love them .

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

If you left a piece of wood anywhere on the island for a day or two, something would grow on it. Usually it was a Bird's Nest Fern, or 6, or 7...

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

A tree fern. As you can see, there was no problem with a lack of privacy between the units.....all you could see was plants, plants, more plants and a little bit of pathway or the thatch of a roof.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Here's my friend Cowboy with one of the more accessible giant Bird's Nests. (He actually smiles a lot more than this - )

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Hi to you CowBoy .
Shari , Do you have Parrots there ?
These get fed on the side veranda .

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West Bay, Cayman Islands(Zone 11)

Great stuff there Shari!!! It seems that you didn't have to venture very far from the hut to capture so many varieties and colors....did you make a trek around to see what's on the other side??? Just curious...looks like you had a great time and got some lovely plant shots for the collection....Did you guys get in the water????

Welcome home, glad you're back with us...we missed you!

john

Clemmons, NC(Zone 7b)

Don't know if you got to enjoy the "swimming" but I am really jealous of my parents getting to see all that, especially before either of them knew what a ginger was!

What a beautiful place-love that outer jetty off the island :)

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

You are all so nice to enjoy my little pictures. Yes, there will be some underwater pics in a bit. The water was pretty murky - strong currents and pretty much mud flats all the way out to diving depth. But I'll put some out there. We visited lots of areas around the island, only about half of these are from the immediate area of our hotel. The Poncianas and orchids were taken during a walk about (looking for how to procure a driver's licence and some licence plates tee hee). Here is one of the places we stopped at during that trek:

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Clemmons, NC(Zone 7b)

Just beautiful, Shari ! I'm sure the things you take for granted everyday would be interesting to me at least, anyway!

So, did you guys go renew your vows while you were at the Town Hall....:)

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

I wasn't going to post the building pics - this is a GARDEN site after all - but maybe a few won't hurt. here is another one; on the mission mentioned above we also went to the police station, the treasure building, the government supply office and finally the Governor's Office! Quite the "official" tour, and boy did we hear about it when we got back!!!!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Tropicanna - nope. We thought about it, but we had been walking all morning and were sweaty and grimey (sp?). We have sort of done that in many places around the world - just not officially! Check out these double hibs Cowboy had to reach UP to get close to! He's a Texan, and tells me that even Texas hibs aren't that big! (Just joshin ya Cowboy)!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Oh - I forgot to mention that the above mission was also about getting a Pohnpeian flag. DH collects flags from all the places we visit, and we finally got one from the Governor! Mr. Johnny P. David graciously found a small flag to give to my husband. Nice guy!

This is another of the plants that was all over the island. Couln't make a positive ID, but I THINK it is a member of the strelifzia family. Maybe somebody seeing these pics will know for sure. Very pretty - not as raggedy when bloom fade as Bird of Paradise. You will see them in many of the pics.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This hib was so amazing - the pic just doesn't do it justice, we came around a bend and it was about 50 yards away in the shadow of a huge mangoe tree. It just glowed! You could see it ahead, just radiating pink sunshine - gorgeous!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This will give you an idea of the area we were walking through....the paths are gravel - some stone steps - and, this was the unusual part - up by the waterfall areas (later pics) a science professor who was there said that he was looking at things that only grow in rain forests. So I wasn't kidding above when I said jungle/rainforest all around. It really was!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Check out these taro! A truck was passing on that road in the background, and it looked so small by the ee's - I tried to get it for scale, but it went by too quickly.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This was one of my favorite trees (and favorite DH as well!). It was one of two huge Monkey Pod trees just outside the long house. A whole ecosystem in a tree! I counted at least 6 different kinds of ferns, birds, orchids, geckoes, it was amazing!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Looking up into the branches of the Monkey Pod.

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Clemmons, NC(Zone 7b)

Whoa! Amazing...next time I see my dad I'm gonna kick his butt for not working there anymore!

I am amazed-wish I could identify the strelzia (??) thing, I have a white BOP, but that's it. Much harder to similate the tropics here in NC.

And Shari, you don't look like you'd be "chunky-dunkin" ,girl, please!

Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Remember sweetie - these are pics of Pohnpei - not Kwaj! We only dream of our gardens getting this lush!

Here is just one of the branches of that same tree - there are three Bird's Nests Ferns on the one branch. Each one would be large enough for a person to sit in!

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

This little guy was trying to convince us that he was a better looking geckco than the one that GEICO uses in those commercials....I think he was auditioning.....

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Thought we might go for a hike up here......

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

Decided on the easier way - down.

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Kwajalein, Marshall Islands(Zone 11)

The area around this pretty little church will give you an idea of just how lush the whole island is:

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KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

Wow!! Gorgeous!!

Clemmons, NC(Zone 7b)

Beautiful-I realize Kwaj is not as pretty as Pohnpei, but stil close enough to get there. The islands are incredible. I was most amazed by pics of Kosrae (don't want to publicize it much, sounds pretty the way it is) when my parents visited there-I actually applied to the Peace Corps and asked to go there-I never heard from anyone-lol

Dad worked with a lot of Texans and a lot of New Zealanders there, too. Interesting cultural collage.

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