In its summer glory, this echinacea graced the Heatherwood meadow with its beautiful white bloom. Now at the beginning of winter, its glory still hangs on providing a striking contrast to the ground cover and dead leaves below. As snow falls it will continue to stand out as the white crystals collect on the seed head. It will never give up providing interest to the garden.
Sometimes it feels good to get away from reality and let the imagination flow. Looking through some macro images I took yesterday I wondered what would happen if I would put a couple of ground cover photos together. I picked a close-up of a clump of blue fescue and a red-colored ice plant. One had a fine texture, one a smooth course texture. One was blue, one was red. I made a multi-image composite in Photoshop and was pleased with the results. I still felt playful and decided to add an impressionistic overlay patterned after Georgia O’Keefe … voila, the above image appeared. Am I creative or crazy? Maybe a little of both?
Magenta, green, orange, yellow, red and green … How many colors can a leaf have? Patterns and lines grace the leaf in random fashions. What factors determine the design of an autumn leaf? Like a snowflake, no two are the same. The wonder of nature has many stories to tell.
The buttery yellow of a November rose brings a little sunshine to our rose garden. Most of the garden’s roses are spent and hanging down. Just a few of our yellow floribunda remain. Even these are on their last hurrah. Leaves are wilting and falling off. Rose hips are forming. It is time for the roses to go to sleep for the winter and get their rest for a bright June bloom.
Our rose garden is still full of color. However, most of the blooms are past their prime and are a little tattered. It is hard to find a full crisp fresh rose without a few defects in the petals. So with my macros, my focus is on color, shape, and lines. I am continuing to work with creating “softness” with some of my rose images. I combined two images, one in focus, and one out of focus and blended them together to achieve the above result.
So here’s a little brightness for your day! There is always something in the world to celebrate.
“When you see red, shoot” … especially in the garden. The leathery red leaves of this Oregon grape popped out from the background. The Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium) is a multi-season star of the garden. Its dark green leaves provide a strong contrast with its bright yellow spring blooms. These turn into blue berries in the late summer/fall. In the winter, the leaves turn to various shades of orange, burgundy, and red.
We have planted several mahonia among the pines and spruces of our conifer grove to provided a multi-season complimentary contrast.
The glow of this back/side lit expired hydrangea bloom stopped me in my tracks. It was like if it was a bright red stop sign signaling me to stop and pay attention to what it had to offer. Each fall, I face a hard decision to deadhead the spent blooms for a better bloom next year, or let them be to provide special winter interest. We solved the problem this spring by planting several additional plants in the lower part of the garden.
The textured pattern of this tree trunk also caught my eye. I do not know what it is … yet. It is time for another trip to the Arboretum to see if I can locate this tree and find out what it is. Maybe I can add it to the Heatherwood Arboretum.
This post will start a series of images depicting nature’s little wonders. These images are from a photo excursion I took in the Yakima Arboretum over a year ago. From time to time, I give myself an assignment to practice a specific type of photography. This trip I focused on looking for little things that caught my eye whatever they might be. Some were abstracts, others were macro details of pieces of nature.
Interesting bark was one of the things that caught my eye. The texture and color contrasts of the peeling bark of a paperbark maple (Acer griseum) creates a beautiful abstract that highlights a winter scene. We have planted two acer griseums in our yard, one at the entry of our Japanese garden and one in the middle of our front lawn. They are striking in the summer and gorgeous in the winter, especially covered with a little snow.