Vinca

17 09 2019

Nikon D850, Nikkor 105mm micro

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB Vinca Blooms





iPhoneography: Saucer magnolia blooms

3 04 2018

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved. iPhone 7Plus / Snapseed app borders

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Canna blooms

3 08 2017

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WEB Orange Canna





Canna blooms

3 08 2017

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB Canna





Come a little bit closer…you’re my kind of bloom

16 05 2017

Love-in-a-mist (Nigella damascena)

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

LoveMist Closeup web





A profusion of Love-in-a-mist blooms

16 05 2017

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Loveinamist profusion 1





Delphinium

21 06 2016

Is there a more stunning color combination than purple-blue against bright green? I think not.

© Cindy Dyer. All right reserved.

WEB Delphinium Stalk

 





Lollipop, Lollipop, Oh Lolli-Lolli-Lolli

18 06 2012

Blooming in my garden: Globe thistle (Echinops ritro). My friend and neighbor, Michael P. (a.k.a. “Grasshopper,” since he’s my newest photography protégé), loves to come over to my garden in evening after he gets off of work. It’s usually way past the time that I would shoot, but he manages to get some decent shots despite the low light levels. This afternoon, Michael and I invited him to join us for a field trip over to Green Spring Gardens, followed by dinner. By the time we got back to our neighborhood, it was close to 8:00 and he began shooting in my front yard. I joined him, although it went against my nature to continue shooting in that low of light. I was surprised that I could get some decent shots (of course, I’ve got the D300 pumped up to 1000+ ISO to get them) of my Globe thistle and Shasta daisies (Leucanthemum x superbum). Earlier in the week, Michael R. had tied up the thistle because they were drooping and in doing so, he created this little lollipop skyline. I love the whimsical Dr. Seuss-ian look of it! More to come…

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Green Spring Gardens portfolio

30 09 2011

I just updated my Green Spring Gardens-only portfolio on my Zenfolio site. Green Spring Gardens is an endless source of photographic inspiration to me, so I’ve dedicated a folder exclusively to images shot there. Check out that gallery here.

As we’re heading into fall, there are still a few plants left to photograph in my own garden, such as the tiny Speckled Miyazaki Toad Lily (Tricyrtis hirta ‘Miyazaki’), Autumn Joy Sedum (Sedum telephium) and Shasta Daisies (Chrysanthemum maximum) that are blooming in the front yard. Even my Globe Thistle (Echinops Ritro) has started putting out blooms again, which I find odd at this point in the gardening season—I suppose it has something to do with the inordinate amount of rain and consistently temperate days we’ve had here in Northern Virginia. Beginning a week ago, the Heavenly Blue Morning Glory vines in the front yard have produced a single, bedazzingly blue bloom each morning, mingling with the garish red and yellow combo of the Butterly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) plants nearby. The Morning Glory vines reseed each year with no assistance from me, so I stopped planting new seeds a few years ago!

Although the three vines have been stretching along the grape arbor, I still see no signs of blooms from my new Passionflower plants, but I still hold out that hope that all gardeners learn to cultivate. I planted two Passionflower plants in one pot to trail up the grape arbor outside my patio doors and one in another pot with a trellis near the edge of the patio. Sharing the trellis are at least three green bean vines—unexpected sprouts from a neglected seed packet discovered on my potting bench. (Read my posting about that discovery in “Against all odds” here.) I have since harvested a dozen green beans from those tenacious little sprouts (which translates to “don’t quit your day job to become a green bean farmer”). A photo of my meager bean harvest is to come…

Learn “How to Grow Your Garden Photography Skills” in my recent photo feature for Nikon’s Learn & Explore section here.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Buttonbush

28 06 2011

I photographed this Buttonbush cluster (Cephalanthus occidentalis), also known as Button willow and Honey balls, this morning at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens in Washington, D.C. A native wetland tree, it can grow 10-15 feet tall and spread 15-30 feet. The mid-summer blooms are rich in nectar that attracts butterflies and other insects.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Re-post: Yearning for blooms

24 01 2011

Originally posted January 26, 2009

Sigh. How much winter is left?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Revisiting the Kenilworth archives…

22 06 2010

Next month, the lotus blossoms will be at their finest at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens in Washington, D.C. And yes, I’ll be there once again (even though these lovely blooms choose to do their thing on the hottest day of the summer, year after year. Ah, well, no pain, no gain, right? Even for photographers! Here are some images I shot last year.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





More blooms at Green Spring Gardens

16 05 2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Spring Beauty

25 03 2010

One of my favorite little spring flowers at Green Spring Gardens is Scilla siberica ‘Spring Beauty’—also known as Spring Beauty Scilla, Wood Squill or Siberian Squill (Liliaceae family). Tiny and delicate bright porcelain blue flowers grow on 4-6 inch stalks from bulbs in early spring in full sun to part shade. Tough and extremely cold hardy (Zones 2-8), this low-maintenance plant naturalizes easily by bulb offshoots and through self-seeding. Until this morning, I had never seen the underside of these shy, downward-facing blooms. The wind had flipped back a few blossoms, revealing their “faces.” I also photographed a white form, ‘Alba.’ Green Spring Gardens also grows a striped squill, Puschkinia libanotica. The website tulipworld.com states that although this striped form is hardly known, it is one of the best bulbs for beginners because it can be grown almost anywhere as long as there is proper drainage. And their price is right, too—40 bulbs for just $9.71—can’t beat that!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Spring blooms

14 04 2009

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Bull Run Bluebells

9 04 2009

For many years I’ve been meaning to go see the Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica) en masse at Bull Run Regional Park in Manassas about this time of the year. I can now cross that excursion off my list! If you live in Northern Virginia (or thereabouts), there’s an annual Bull Run Bluebell Walk at 2:00 p.m. this Sunday, April 12.

As I mentioned in my earlier posting here, I wanted to avoid the crowds and certainly did. We encountered less than a dozen hikers and photographers on our hike down the Bluebell Trail.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the number of plants in bloom, though, and a bit hard to work around the plethora of trees, trunks, and fallen branches to get that stellar shot. Many of the landscape-with-Bluebell shots I got were more “record” shots than stellar. Michael found a plastic bag in the car (the ground was still quite damp), and we both hunkered down on the ground to get up close and personal with a few perfect specimens. Our positioning also allowed us to discover other plants in bloom: Trout Lilies (Erythronium americanum) and Cutleaf Toothwarts (Dentaria laciniata, a member of the Mustard family, Brassicaceae). From a distance, Cutleaf Toothworts, whose beauty belies their nefarious-sounding name, look very similar to the ‘Spring Beauty’ wildflowers.

We also took along the Interfit 5 in 1 collapsible reflector (translucent portion only) to block the mid-day sun and get more saturated color. I’ve used the reflector in the studio and for outdoor portraits, but since I usually follow the rule of “shoot flowers in early a.m. or late p.m.,” I’ve never used it for this purpose. I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before—I can now shoot flowers even in the worst light of day for flower photography—that mid-day sun!

While researching where best to photograph fields of Bluebells, I stumbled upon Chris Kayler’s posting about them here. Take a look at his Nature Photography Gallery. Chris, a student at Northern Virginia Community College, specializes in nature and wildlife photography, and lives in Manassas. Spectacular work, Chris!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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‘Spring Beauty’ wildflowers

9 04 2009

These are ‘Spring Beauty’ (Claytonia Virginica) wildflowers that I photographed at Bull Run Regional Park. This perennial herb is a member of the Portulacaceae family and related to the also-edible purslane. Learn more about about this flower’s edible and tasty tubers (who knew?) by reading Scott D. Appell’s article in Plants & Gardens News, published by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden here. These tiny little flowers measure approximately 1/2 inch in diameter and are lightly fragrant. They prefer moist to slightly dry conditions and are planted as corms. These were scattered in clusters among the Bluebells in the park.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

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Told ya I was smitten with lilies…

18 06 2008

and here’s the proof….all of these were photographed in my front and back yard gardens. All but the hot pink stargazer lily (center) and the deep orange lily (next to last row, left) were shot just this afternoon.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





About a boy (and his blooms)

8 05 2008

About seven years ago, Michael planted a ‘Nelly Moser’ Clematis over our tiny pond in the backyard garden. Then we just sat back and ignored it (meaning we didn’t prune it, fertilize it, or attend to it other than watering during dry spells). It has been a prolific bloomer for us every year!

Today was a very damp day in Northern Virginia—with that perfect overcast lighting for photographing flowers. We took the ladder out back and I was able to get some overhead shots of the flowers growing on top of the fence. Michael counted 37 blooms (and that didn’t include the unopened buds). It’s such a beautiful sight—a cascade of big-as-your-hand intense pink blooms flowing down to the pond.

A Clematis plant likes to have its leaves and flowers in full sun, but its roots should be shaded and cool, in moist, well-draining soil. Ours is obviously planted in a perfect spot in our garden. A Bradford pear tree provides dappled sunlight, protecting the flowers during the heat of the day. ‘Nelly Moser’ is an heirloom hybrid that has been around since 1897. It was developed from Clematis lanuginosa, a species from China. The breeder was Marcel Moser from Versailles, France. It is easy to grow and blooms from May to late June for us. It can sometimes bloom again in mid-August, but the second bloom is less profuse. Because ours is planted in a more shady spot, the blossoms last for weeks.

The American Clematis Society has an elegantly designed and informative website: http://clematis.org. If you’re especially enamored with Clematis, join the Society for as low as $20 for an annual membership, which will give you access to more information on their site.

Growing tips: http://www.backyardgardener.com/plantname/pda_dd99.html

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.   www.cindydyer.com/GardenPhotos