I decided not to spend too much money, I am hoping that Canon comes out with the 60D soon and that it will come with the HD video feature that they are including with most new models, so I found a refurbished 40D at B&H Photo for a good price. It arrived at the end of the week and since it was refurbished I wanted to go out and test it right away. Since I still had to work and then had to go in for training at The Raptor Center I needed some place that was quick and easy to get to to test out the new gear. I ended up at the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory in St Paul.
The conservatory is a part of the Como Zoo complex and is comprised of seven indoor areas and three outdoor gardens. The outdoor gardens, which consists of the Japanese Garden, Water Lilies, and the Enchanted or Butterfly Garden are not up this early in the year but there was still plenty of work for the new camera inside. In the center of the facility I found the Palm Dome, where different types of palm trees stretched up to touch the dome high above.
The fern room was misty and humid which is a perfect climate for ferns but not so nice for me.
One of the most popular gardens is the Sunken Garden. Many people have made arrangements to have prom or wedding photos taken here.
The tropical encounters are was cool with many exotic plants that we do not usually see in Minnesota, like the oblong-fruited chamaedorea palmae pictured above. I will need to go back again to get some more flower pics, especially when the outside gardens are up and running, but for now I tested out my new camera and got a few nice pics.