An unapologetic plant geek shares advice and opinions on gardening, the contrived and the natural landscape, as well as occasional topics from the other side of the gate.

August 5, 2012

A Plant Geek in South Florida - Lincoln Road Mall

One of the best photography tips I have read seems very obvious - take your camera with you wherever you go.  While we were in Florida my brother had to go to Miami Beach to check on a piece of furniture, and being always up for an adventure, we tagged along.  After some disappointing news at the furniture store, we walked into the mall to see what we could see and to get a bight to eat as well.  Now for someone who works in retail, I really can't stand shopping, but when I saw the mall I was glad I went, and very glad I had my camera.

There was once a trend in urban planning that aimed to inject new life into old retail corridors by turning streets into pedestrian malls.  With few exceptions, most of these efforts were failures, but I think Lincoln Road was one of the exceptions.  One look at the lush landscaping and the plant geek told his family he would meet them later for lunch, he had some pictures to take.

Lincoln Road (17)

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I did go in one other store while I was at the mall.  The photographer Peter Lik has one of his galleries on Lincoln Road.  I had never seen any of his work up close before, and the landscapes had me at a loss for words (a rare thing).  All of his work is printed on metal paper and the photos just glow.  I really thought they were lit from behind and electrified, but all the light is on the surface due to the paper.  It gave me big ideas.


  1. Beautiful photos, as always! We get to Miami a couple of times a year, and Lincoln Road is a favorite place to spend a little time. Going again in a few weeks, so now I have specific things to look forward, thanks to your great eye!

  2. Love the building with the rounded corner. So Miami. And I find California so much like South Florida. Everything that grows grows big.

    There is a process for printing on a metalic surface. It really makes certain kinds of images pop. But I'd never heard of metal paper. Had to look that up. c

  3. Wow, what a great tour of Florida. I feel like I've now spent a more rewarding time on the East side of Florida than I ever did in person. Wonderful rich photography and thanks for indulging in the Latin names...

    A few years ago we gave my son a copy of The World Was My Garden: Travels Of A Plant Explorer by David Fairchild and his garden has been on my to do list since then...

  4. Everything is so lush and green in all the photos. I love south Florida.

  5. Beautiful photos of a really lush landscape. Whenever I'm in Florida, I am always amazed that they can plant houseplants outside like that.

  6. HOW COOL is that those bromiads around the Palm trunk!!!wow I wonder if that crystal scull holds magical properties?

  7. Raymond Jungles designed the block at 1111 Lincoln Road, and that's gotten lots of press (in certain places!). It looks like you may have been there in the photos. Not sure. So I'm thinking a visit to Miami might not be so bad.

  8. Looks like you had a great geek vacation. Time to move to florida? lol.

  9. Tim,
    You are very lucky you get to go frequently. Next time I get down there, I want to photograph South Beach. We drove it, but that is not condusive to good photos.

    The photos I saw were not edgy or provocative, they did not have a point of view. However, they were some of the most beautiful landscapes, flowers and foliage I have seen.

    John you are welcome for the tour. I have one more post to do.

    Yes indeed, it was very lush and green.

    That's what I kept thinking. Houseplants! Only these were giants.

    For the price, that skull should do something amazing.

    I really appreciate the info on Raymond Jungles. I was able to look up some of his work, including the Lincoln Rd. work. I recognized it right away because it was distinctive from the rest of the landscaping. His plant choices and design style seemed to pull more of the southeast coast in, rather than South America. It was a nice contrast to the rest of the mall.

    I have not put the house on the market... yet.


  10. I love this Les..I have always had a weird attraction to Florida even though my visits there never thrilled me or made me ache to return.I think it's the humid factor.And business travels often take you to most mundane areas. I would love to stroll that neighborhood with my camera!

  11. Now that is some awesome landscaping! Love the garden art around the various garden spaces. Glad you had your garden.

  12. Wow, that is some kind of wonderful tropical paradise...I mean mall! Now, I must look at the metal paper works of Peter Lik. gail

  13. I want that red penquin. I do.

  14. Les, thanks for the beautiful walk down memory lane. I grew up in Miami (was actually born there) and haven't been back too often. A trip to the Lincoln Road Mall was always a treat. Be sure to visit South Beach next time if you can. You'll enjoy photographing the deco hotels.

  15. KS,
    I know what you mean about business travel, but I try to always sneak away to see some of where I have been sent.

    Yes it was awesome, and I was completely surprised, especially since I had no expectations.

    Yes, go to his webite. You do not get a real sense of how the pics look in person, but you can certainly see his subject matter.

    I like to think he spent too much sun on Miami Beach and got sunburned.

    We did visit South Beach, but unfortunately it was only a driving tour. I will go back, and hopefully spend some time there. The architecture and the people will provide lots of photo ops.


  16. Love love love those delonix regia!

  17. OK. Trust me to focus on the weird thing. What's the story on the diamond-encrusted skull.

  18. Louis,
    I had never seen one before, and it was love at first sight.

    The skull was in a jewlery store window. It was the only item on display that caught my attention.


  19. Beautiful Les. It is great you can show so many flowers this time of year. I recently read an article in our local rag in the gardening section from a writer I will not embarrass by name, who dramatically describes her garden this month as being in the doldrums and that she does not want anyone to se it.Beautiful photos, as always! We get to Miami a couple of times a year, and Lincoln Road is a favorite place to spend a little time. Looks like you had a great geek vacation.Hyderabad Flowers

  20. It does pay to have your camera with you at all times. Great pictures Les!