‘Blue Moon’ Siberian iris against a backdrop of Astilbe foliage

7 05 2013

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

BlueMoonIris Astilbe Bkgd





Bearded iris (unknown variety)

5 05 2013

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

PurpleYellowBeardedIris lorez





Origami paper cranes

4 03 2013

Colorful 2,500 Origami paper cranes hang like a chandelier in the Cottage Wing of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s Conservatory

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

ColorfulCranes





Colorfuze Blue Diamond Phalaenopsis White Dream ‘V3’

3 03 2013

Plainview Growers in New Jersey produces Colorfuze orchids, which are plants that have been infused with dye. Upon reblooming, the flowers of this orchid will be white. They also produce them in purple and lavender. While I love naturally blue flowers, the verdict is still out for me with this one. It is lovely to photograph, but…what do you think?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

BlueOrchid





Vertical beauties

2 11 2011

When my friend Senthil was visiting in September (to be photographed for the cover of the upcoming November/December 2011 Hearing Loss Magazine), Michael and I dropped him off at the U.S. Capitol building so he could get some photographs. I went over to check out the sprawling vertical garden display outside the U.S. Botanic Garden, which is in view of the Capitol.

Apparently the exhibit has been in place for a couple of years and I just got to see the very end of the exhibit. I can’t find anything on the web regarding who designed it or any details on the types of plants, how-to’s, etc., but I do have some photographs to share. It was really a sight to see—and had I the room to build something like this in my own backyard garden, it would happen in a nanosecond. I shot some closeups so you can see the details. The wood frames have coco fiber “shelf baskets” held into place with wire screen. The plants are tucked either directly into the liner baskets or through holes made in the side of the baskets.

There were a lot of plants that I recognized immediately, including vegetables and ornamental plants, plus herbs such as oregano, sage and basil; various coleus plants, licorice plants, flowering annuals, sweet potato vine, ferns, ivies, catmint and catnip, just to name a few. Read more about vertical gardening here.

Michael and I saw these Woolly Pocket living planters in the gift shop at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden last week. They’re made from recycled plastic bottles and come in unlined (for outdoor use) and lined (for indoor use) versions, along with wall anchors. You can line an entire wall with these pockets (which come in a multitude of sizes and colors), fill them with a variety of plants, and achieve impressive results!

But the type of vertical gardening that makes me swoon are the “succulent gardens” shown on Flora Grubb Garden’s blog here and their main website here. Jaw-dropping beautiful pieces of living art—they remind me of landscapes as seen from the air. Flora Grubb sells the tray components to achieve these looks in your own home or on a garden wall.

Authors and gardeners Susan Morrison and Rebecca Sweet recently published Garden Up! Smart Vertical Gardening for Small and Large Spaces, available here. Author and garden photographer Derek Fell has written Vertical Gardening: Grow Up, Not Out, for More Vegetables and Flowers in Much Less Space, available here. And on my list of books to add to my gardening library is green thumb artist and French botanist Patrick Blanc’s tome The Vertical Garden: From Nature to the City, available here. Want to see some spectacular living walls? Visit Blanc’s website here.





Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on Stoke’s Aster

5 07 2011

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) on Stoke’s Aster (Stokesia laevis)

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Kaleidoscope!

23 03 2011

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.