Same time, last year: Hoverfly on African daisy

24 03 2012

Originally posted March 24, 2011

Hoverfly (Syrphidae), also known as Flower fly, on an African daisy (Dimorphotheca aurantiaca)

I found this image in my archives recently—photographed at Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island north of Victoria, Canada three years ago. If you’re a garden lover or love to photograph gardens, put this place at the top of your “to visit” list. It is spectacular!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





From the Polaroid transfer archives: Lupine

22 02 2012

I photographed this beautiful Lupine bloom many years ago when I was visiting my friend John in Barrington Passage, Nova Scotia. When I hopped out of the car to photograph a field of these beauties, he laughed and said, “why on earth are you photographing weeds?” They grow so abundantly in his area that the locals consider them weeds! I took the 35mm slide and create this Polaroid transfer piece soon after. You can learn more about the Polaroid transfer process in my blog posting here.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Re-post: Victoria Harbour, B.C. sunset

20 09 2011

Originally posted 9.21.2008

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Butchart Gardens Flower fly

24 03 2011

I found this image in my archives recently—photographed at Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island north of Victoria, Canada three years ago. If you’re a garden lover or love to photograph gardens, put this place at the top of your “to visit” list. It is spectacular!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Sunset over Victoria Harbour, B.C.

27 02 2011

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

This is one of my favorite sunset images, shot from the ferry as we entered Victoria Harbour in British Columbia on a trip we took with my friend Sue and her mother in fall 2008. See lots more photos from that wonderful trip in the links below:

Lavender, shopping, cheese, wine, a whale, and yet another sunset

Virginia creeper-clad Fairmont Empress Hotel

Never too many flowers

Dahlias as far as the eye can see…

In the pink…

Shine on, shine on harvest moon…

Butchart Gardens, Passel #1

Butchart Gardens, Passel #2

Visual and aural overload at Pike Place

Cabin in the woods

If it’s Thursday, this must be Bloedel.

There’s a baer in them thar woods!

Wildlife in Spokane

Sunsets over Bainbridge Island





Boat in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

6 01 2010

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Nova Scotia goats

12 12 2009

How could you not love being greeted by this herd of colorful goats? I especially love that little pocket-sized one, second from left. I shot this photo not too far from the Bay of Fundy, on the northeast end of the Gulf of Maine between the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. My friend John, who hails from Barrington Passage, Nova Scotia, was a great photo scout during this road trip. Right after these shots, we took a walk on the mud flats of the Bay of Fundy. Obviously, the tide was out!

According to wikipedia, “during the 12.4 hour tidal period, 115 billion tonnes of water flow in and out of the bay. The quest for world tidal dominance has led to a rivalry between the Minas Basin in the Bay of Fundy and the Leaf Basin in Ungava Bay, over which body lays claim to the highest tides in the world, with supporters in each region claiming a record. The Canadian Hydrographic Service finally declared it a statistical tie, with measurements of a 55.1 feet tidal range in Leaf Basin for Ungava Bay and 55.8 feet at Burntcoat Head for the Bay of Fundy. The highest water level ever recorded in the Bay of Fundy system occurred at the head of Minas basin on the night of October 4-5, 1869 during a tropical cyclone named the “Saxby Gale.” The water level of 70.9 feet resulted from the combination of high winds, abnormally low atmospheric pressure, and a spring tide.”

Bay of Fundy Tourism

Terri’s Bay of Fundy Blog

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Ten for 10

21 05 2009

About a half hour before the Green Spring Gardens plant sale was to close this past Saturday, the Virginia Master Gardeners booth started hawking all of their plants as “ten for $10.” Yep…some of the same plants I had purchased about two hours earlier for $5+, much to my chagrin. Reasonable prices before, yes, but at $1 each—what gardener in their right mind would possibly pass on that offer? Never mind if we’ve run out of space in our gardens—they’re a dollar! Just a dollar! We’ve discovered that some of the vendors do that each year so they don’t have to drag all the unsold items back to wherever they originated…and I am only too happy to help them lighten their load.

My 10-for-10 purchases included:

PrimroseOenothera Lemon Drop, common name ‘Evening Primrose’—a low-maintenance, herbaceous perennial that blooms in full sun from June-September. This perennial is tough, tolerates poor soil, and loves the sun. Bright yellow blooms all summer. Deadheading is not necessary, it’s drought and heat tolerant and grows 8-12″ tall. It can also be grown in containers, where it will trail over the sides. And of course I already have some of these in my front yard garden, courtesy of our friend Micheline, who shared them with us when she downsized houses a few years ago. There was a large bank of these cheery flower blooming profusely in her backyard garden. Photo courtesy of Missouri Botanical Garden PlantFinder.

AnemoneOne sorta sad-looking (had to rescue it, though) Japanese Aneomone or Windflower (Anemone hupehensis)–-the tag indicates the flowers will be pinkish/mauve, so this might be the variety ‘September Charm.’ This perennial plant bears poppy-like flowers in September and October. The plants reach a height of four to five feet with each flower having five or more petal-like sepals that enclose the golden stamens. The leaves turn wine-red in autumn. Wish this plant luck—it will need it! Photo © Cindy Dyer.


WhiteWoodAsterTwo White Wood Asters (Aster divaricatus)—also known as ‘Eastern Star’—perennial herbaceous native to the eastern U.S. Grows 1-3 feet high with 3/4 to 1-inch white ray flowers that bloom profusely from August to September. The center of each flat-top flower starts yellow then ages to a reddish purple hue. The leaves are heart-shaped, stalked and sharply-toothed. White Wood Asters grow in part shade to full shade, are low-growing and low maintenance, and attract butterflies. They thrive in dry shade but become lush in moist soil. Cut hard at least once in spring to set the foliage back. Photo courtesy of Missouri Botanical Garden PlantFinder.

Viola striata (other common names: Striped cream violet, Common white violet, Pale violet, Striped violet)—native perennial herb blooms white and purple flowers April through June. Requires part shade and moist, loamy soil. This plant spreads through its rhizomes. Flowers attract bee flies, butterflies (particularly caterpillars of Fritillary butterflies and several species of moths) and skippers. Seeds are eaten by mourning doves, wild turkeys, mice, and rabbits.

MaxSunflowerI should be punished for purchasing another Maximilian sunflower (Helianthus maximiliani). I bought the same plant four years ago because I thought it would be perfect at the bottom of the steps of our front porch. The plant label purported, “cheery little yellow flowers on 4 ft. stems.” Four feet tall—nice size for the front entrance, right? By the end of the summer, visitors were asking us if we were growing corn in the front yard. We measured it and the tallest stalk was about 12 feet high! I just did some research and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center site claims they grow 3-10 ft. high. What kind of wild range is that? (Imagine this scenario: Officer: Ma’am, how tall was the man who stole your wheelbarrow? Me: Ummm…he was three feet tall….then again, he might have been ten feet tall. I can’t be certain!) The plant grows Jack-in-the-Beanstalk high and then very late in the summer it sprays forth masses of miniature (2-3 inches across) yellow sunflowers that are at their most beautiful when they sway against a cornflower blue sky. And if I really want to get some good closeup shots of the blooms, I have to drag out the tall ladder to do so! Did I need another of these plants? No. But it was only a buck! Anyone have room in their garden for it? Photo © Cindy Dyer.

EchinopsRitroGlobe Thistle (Echinops ritro)—Clump-forming herbaceous perennial with coarse, prickly leaves (and how!) with 1-2 ball-shaped silvery-lavender-blue or dark blue flowerheads blooming in early to late summer on rigid branching stems 24-48 inches tall. These beautiful ornamentals grow best in full sun to mostly sunny areas, attract bees and butterflies, are good for cut flowers (and dried bouquets as well), will tolerate the heat and are deer resistant. And yes, I already have one—it’s about three years old and is the size of a small shrub already. I expect a plethora of blooms this season. Photo © Cindy Dyer.

SnowonthemountainSnow-on-the-Mountain (Euphorbia marginata)—I photographed this beautiful annual plant at Green Spring Gardens last year and posted the images on my blog here. A member of the spurge family, it flowers in the summer. Reaching 18-24 inches high, it requires sun to partial shade, and will attracts a plethora of butterflies, moths, bees, wasps and other insects—a veritable photographic smorgasbord! Now I’ll have one of my very own…once I find a place to plant it, that is. Folks, it was just a dollar, remember? Photo © Cindy Dyer.


Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata)—This tough native is deer-resistant and provides food for larval butterflies. Clusters of sweet-scented white flowers appear on 1-2 foot stalks in June and July. Whorled milkweed can be found in prairies, pastures, open woods and by the roadside. Learn more about attracting Monarch butterflies to your garden (and purchase milkweed seeds, too) at www.happytonics.org.

Salvia

‘Ostfriesland’ Salvia (Salvia nemorosa)—also known as Violet Sage, Ornamental Meadow Sage, Perennial Woodland Sage—this sun-loving herbaceous perennial grows 12-18 inches high with fragrant violet-blue flowers blooming from summer to autumn. Attractive to bees, butterflies and birds, and deer resistant. I couldn’t find this version in my files or a suitable one to reprint, so I’m showing a similar salvia I photographed at Butchart Gardens. Photo © Cindy Dyer







Bees, revisited

27 01 2009

Back in May 2007 I posted a photo collage of bees and wasps I have photographed in my garden as well as in public gardens in the U.S. and Canada. You can revisit that post here.

Below is one of my favorite bee photographs taken at Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island, just north of Victoria. If you’re a garden lover, put Butchart Gardens on your must-see list. It’s spectacular! And if you love photographing gardens, flowers and insects, you’ll run out of time before you run out of subjects. I spent more than an hour just photographing the Dahlia Border garden in September! This was our second time at Butchart Gardens.

See more flowers from our visit to the gardens this past September in the links below:

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/22/butchart-gardens-passel-1/

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/23/butchart-gardens-passel-2/

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/23/calling-all-bug-aficionados/

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/26/pink/

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

butchartbee





Family portraits in Manito Park

10 12 2008

I shot these photographs of our friends Barb and Dean with their family in beautiful Manito Park in Spokane, Washington, when we visited them in September.

I posted a blog about Barb’s beautiful Persian cat, Beaujolais, and how her modeling career put Barb and her kids through college! Click here for the story.

After we left Spokane, we headed back to Seattle, then on to Victoria, British Columbia, where I went quite photo crazy (particularly at Butchart Gardens)! Check out all the postings from our 10-day trip in the two links below:

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/

https://cindydyer.wordpress.com/2008/09/page/2/

© Cindy Dyer. All right reserved.

barbcrandellfamily





Virginia creeper-clad Fairmont Empress Hotel

30 09 2008

Located front and center in Victoria’s Inner Harbour, The Fairmont Empress is an imposing, Virginia creeper-clad thing of beauty! This year the Fairmont Empress, known for its world-famous afternoon tea, turns 100 years old. The Empress is one of the oldest and most famous hotels in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Over 130,000 visitors come here each year.

The Edwardian, chateau-style 477-room hotel was designed by Francis Rattenbury (whose biography rivals modern day soap operas). It was built between 1904 and 1908. Rattenbury also designed the Legislative Buildings in Victoria.

Read Robert Fulford’s column from the Globe and Mail: “Rattenbury: The Case of the Murdered Victoria Architect,” for details about Rattenbury’s rather interesting personal life. And click here for the UK census bureau information on the Rattenbury family.

From http://www.encyclopedia.com: “The walls of Ivy League colleges are not covered with ivy; they’re covered with Virginia creeper. Still, the name “Creeper League” colleges wouldn’t conjure up visions of institutions for higher learning.” © Lee Reich, Telegraph-Herald, Dubuque

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Boats in Victoria Harbour

30 09 2008

I photographed these boats in the Victoria Harbour as we were heading back to the ferry to return to Port Angeles, Washington, on Thursday, September 18.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

NOTE: Be sure to click on “PREVIOUS ENTRIES” at the very bottom of the screen to see more posts in September and more photos from our recent vacation to the Pacific Northwest.





Never too many flowers

30 09 2008

So much for that “give plants room to breathe” rule! They seem to be doing just fine, don’t they? This was a spectacular flower bed we saw en route from the ferry toward the Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia.

The plaque reads:

The Peace Tulip Garden: A lasting commemoration in honour of the Canadian troops who liberated the Netherlands. Individually, each flower represents a memory; collectively, they represent the effort of all Canadians and the resulting friendship with the Dutch. October 14, 1995. City of Victoria, Vancouver Island

I especially liked the orange Lantana “tree” in the center. I’ve been seeing more of these available in our local garden centers (and they’re not cheap!). This border contained daisies, sweet potato vine, ageratum, salvias, dusty miller, coleus, cannas, petunias, and many other flowers.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Calling all bug aficionados!

23 09 2008

I photographed this critter near the Sunken Garden at Butchart Gardens this past Thursday. After some quick research, I’ve determined this is not a Canadian soldier (which is what we call every long legged bug we come across anywhere). He has those little antennae that stick out on his back like this Crane Fly here, but I think it it most likely is Elephantomyia westwoodi. Any bug aficionados care to enlighten us and verify or dispute my claim?

Learn about the interesting history behind the gardens here. Click here for a list of what was in bloom during our visit.

NOTE: Be sure to click on “PREVIOUS ENTRIES” at the very bottom of the screen to see more posts in September!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Butchart Gardens, Passel #2

23 09 2008

The parade of flowers continues…words simply cannot describe how over the moon I was to be photographing in that garden all day long…flitting from flower to flower to flower just like the insects I encountered…would someone please please please pay me to do this every day?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.