Rose of Sharon

I am so excited. The other day I spent a little time reading some more about using my camera and all of a sudden it started clicking (get it?). The past few days I haven’t been using Auto at all and am really pleased with the results I am getting. It is so much more fun being in control of what my camera is doing – no big surprise to my friends who know I like being in control.

Another thing I’m excited about. I am enjoying my world so much more now that I’m attempting to capture it on images. My morning walk is nice. I live on a funny shaped elongated circle that is 1/2 mile long and with lots of up-hills and down. But pretty typical suburban – nothing too exciting.

Today I took my camera with me and shot about 100 pics – on what is normally a 10-minute walk. I guess there is lots going on in my hood that I never noticed before – or at least not up close. Today I had lots of fun in my neighbor’s yard capturing the many moods of their Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus family) blooms. Here are my favorites. They are all from the same bush and are presented to show their unfolding to full glory.

Here are a few taken in the yards of two other neighbors.

Mysterious Wild Flower

Wild Flowers of Gros Morne

If you have been following my posts during our trip to Eastern Canada, you know I went wild over wild flowers. They were everywhere, in abundance, and beautiful. My husband made a good effort to be patient and I limited the number of times that we pulled over for photo ops. But I took pictures. While he pumped gas, I took pictures. I took LOTS OF PICTURES OF WILD FLOWERS but I only took a small fraction of the photographs that wanted to be taken.

There is one wild flower that drove me to distraction, however. It is that lavender/purple/sometimes pink flower you see in the above photo. It was everywhere and it brought a lot of drama to the fields of other flowers. Sometimes there was just a little of it, sometimes there were very large areas. And I tried to capture the beauty but was always frustrated with the results. I couldn’t get my camera to pick up what I was seeing.

The main problem is that they bloom from the bottom up and when the petals fall the stem is covered with these little bright pink twigs that are very showy until you press the shutter.

Now maybe some of you really good macro photographers could get 5 billion little pink twigs over a deep field all in tack-sharp focus – I couldn’t.

So my husband is talking to the son of the man who took us whale watching and I am photographing wild flowers between drops of rain and strong gusts of wind. They come out of the little building and Jim says to follow them. He had told this young man that I had been trying to photograph this pink flower that is all over. The young man says they have a whole field of them but his mom said no one knows its name and leads us down a short wooded path. A whole field of them is there before my very eyes – but my images are disappointing. Again.

But I keep trying every time I see them and do get some good images when I start taking photos of the parts instead of trying to capture the impact of many.

Sometimes they appear purple and sometimes more pink. It probably depends on the soil.

And then as were driving through Gros Morne National Park on Newfoundland, I saw the most beautiful expanse of wildflowers but it wasn’t possible for us to stop. On the way back I drove so I could watch for them and find a place to stop. I tended to be less fussy about where I pulled off the two-lane highway.

Gros Morne National Park

Latter on the trip we found an information display that identified this wild flower as Wildfire Plant because the little sticks on the stems explode into hundreds of little fluffy seeds, similar to dandelions, and plant themselves where vegetation has burned off. They also spread through underground roots. That explained why I was seeing bright white patches among the purple/pink flowers.

Wildfire Flower Going to Seed

Now I know what it is and by chance had photographed its blooming life cycle. I also found another picture when I searched Wildfire Flower.

Petite Wild Flowers in the Maritimes

I love flowers and there were wildflowers blooming everywhere – fields of them, along the road, along drives, hedgerows of them. I made it my mission to photograph as many as possible. I don’t have my wildflower guide with me so I can’t name most of them. Maybe I’ll make that my mission when I get home.

Caped Jewelweed or “Touch Me Not”

This one looks like a funny little fish with fins and tail. They were very difficult to photo because they are very small and somewhat scarce.

Here is another tiny yellow beauty.

Bridfoot Trefoil or Lotus Corniculatus

Here is a purple beauty that was also hard to capture because it is so small and grows a couple of feet off the road shoulder.

Solanum Dulcamara

These white flowers are common throughout the Gaspe Peninsula, northern New Brunswick and this was taken on the Cabot Trail of Nova Scotia but were very difficult to capture in an image. When they grow in mass they are striking because of the white ball and silver stem & leaves. In order to capture them successfully I had to find an isolated flower in order to get contrast.

I found these pink little beauties as I was taking pictures of wildflowers while my husband was pumping gas (again). I took a lot of fun images from the lots of gas stations. These were back in the weeds so I had to threaten life and limb to get them – they are so small that I couldn’t get close to get a good focus. But then this is what they are and what makes them so special.

This afternoon I was taking pictures of these….

When this fellow started posing for me.

If you know the names of any of these, please let us know in a comment. Thanks Gary Schollmeier and Moriah LaChapell for providing names for the first three. I would enjoy being able to provide captions for all my wildflowers.

How Sweet is a Rose?

I took this photo of one of my roses about a week ago. Actually I was thrilled because I found it before the Japanese Beetles had it for breakfast. And the professionals say that early morning shooting is best because of the good light – little do they know.

This week I went out to get an image of a moon flower seed pod and as I started back to the house, I noticed the dew covering this very same rose bush.

The roses and leaves look like they are freshly sugared and ready to be put on a wedding cake.

How sweet!

© Patricia Bailey, 2012

Garden Flowers of Summer

I have been busy taking pictures of the flowers in my garden and am eager to post some of them. Right now Blackeyed Susans continue to steal the show from the Moon Flowers, at least during the day. I am having a lot of fun experimenting with different angles and lighting, along with using features of the camera that I’m familiar with.

What sweethearts. They are so easy to grow and the Japanese Beetles and deer don’t bother them.

Another night flower that I didn’t show with the moon flowers is the Evening Primrose. They have a spreading habit that forms a ground cover but they aren’t invasive. What I like most about them is their clear lemon yellow color.

My New Dawn rose spent itself with its first flush of blooms and the past few weeks it has been salad for the the bugs. Now it is producing a few blooms again. I photographed these in the early light this morning.

This was a pretty yellow blog, so here is a little intense color on an annual – can’t think of the name. And I’m too tired to look it up.

Thanks for stopping by and letting me share some of my garden with you. I hope it brought you some cheer.

Copyright © Patricia A. Bailey and I Miss Me, Too/ 2012-2013.

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