Jade Flower

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I am very familiar with the house plant varieties under the species of Crassula, and also know that house plants grow outdoors here in southern Florida. But this is a vine that is grown in two different locations in the Naples Botanical Garden, one with full sun and one that seems to be more shaded, and doesn’t seem to resemble the jade plants I’m familiar with.

What I do know is that it is very unique. What is pictured above is a mature blossom – new blossoms are a fairly uniform color of aqua that doesn’t seem natural to me.

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The first photo was taken on the boardwalk entrance, I had walked past it several time in January – each time marveling at its unique color. This week it was a “wow.” I lingered a long time taking photos from different perspectives and making sure the color in the view finder was true to the plant.

This seems to be a wonder of nature. Please let us know in the comments if you know where else it grows and other information. I’ll see if I can find someone at the garden who can give me more information.

Bitter Aloe

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The water lily/lotus blossoms are slow to open on my early morning trips to the botanical garden, probably wanting to sleep in until the sun is a bit higher in the sky. Consequently I haven’t spent as much time and focus at the lily ponds, instead moving through other parts of the garden and noticing other flowers in bloom.

There were several clumps of these Bitter Aloe blooms in the succulent garden and their hot, bright color drew me right in. I took several shots from different angles and this was instantly my favorite. This photograph documents the artistic flare of the head horticulturalists that design the beds. In coming blogs I will be focusing on beds of foliage plants that combine beautiful coloring and texture.

 

Backlight on an Orchid

 

 

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Sometimes I’m in the orchid garden at the Naples Botanical Garden when the early morning sun back-lights an orchid, magically showcasing the inner parts and outer leaves.

Responding to Becky’s challenge for January of square photos illustrating words ending in light.

Snow Birds

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It snowed during the night and lightly through the morning hours. Jim, after telling anyone who would listen during the past year about how he loves being a snowbird because he hates clearing the snow from the driveway, was out midmorning clearing the one inch of snow from the drive with his snowblower. He came in with a great big smile on his face, having clearly enjoyed being out in the snow. But I understand how clearing snow grows tedious come late February and March.

I spent a lot of time sitting at the dining room table watching the light snow falling, the snow blowing off the neighbor’s roof, and the birds at the feeders that Jim filled yesterday. I am feeling very relaxed as the Christmas decorations are down and I’m just tidying up as we prepare to fly south in a couple of days. My tidying up includes deleting and tagging 2019 photos, starting with my November ones from Naples Botanical Garden. I haven’t gotten far because I keep returning to the dining room and the birds.

I really enjoyed reading and viewing Susan Rushton‘s post this week where she published many of the photos that she loves from her 2019 garden photography but never found their way into a blog. I think I will be doing the same for the next few weeks, starting with some orchids. Orchids are somewhat difficult to photograph so most of my attempts get deleted. Here are some photos that seem to capture the exotic beauty that I see when I view them growing in the garden.

 

A Gift from the South

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A water lily – Naples Botanical Garden, taken on 12 November 2019.

I’m glad that I am able to visit the garden in the winter when the days are shorter, the sun is still peeking through the trees when I arrive at 8 in the morning. What fun to watch the soft light move from leaf to flower and back again, waiting for the subtle illumination that brings a bit a special to a photograph.

I made some subtle changes in Lightroom to make the photograph reflect what I saw, but maybe this is closer to what I wanted to see than what was really present. Does it matter; is it wrong to create the beauty that I saw instead of the beauty that was?