Flower of the Day

While we were away or a couple of days, the cactus decided to do what cacti do. It bloomed. Not fully.

There are a dozen more buds on both of the plants now. The second one hasn’t bloomed yet, but the buds are full and just about ready!

I took out my Macro Lens and got into my usual battle with it.

“Take that shot.”
“I command you to focus!”
NO, never!”

And suddenly, almost ready to throw the damned lens out the window — I have a perfect picture waiting for the shutter click.

CLICK! Can I please take one more?”

But I got some pretty ones anyhow and there are more I haven’t finished processing yet.


  1. slmret February 5, 2018 / 12:32 am

    You did get some nice shots of the cactus! I guess with macro lenses the depth of field is so narrow that you have to be exactly the right distance from the subject.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 12:40 am

      It’s also that macro lenses are very persnickety about focus. They have two focus lengths — natural (long) at 60mm, and macros — from almost in the flower to a few centimeters out. The lens sort of “finds” its own focus and sometimes, it absolutely doesn’t want to focus close and you have to whisper sweet nothings into its optics before it will decide to find it. It works better in very bright light, which I didn’t get today because it was raining. But I don’t get very bright light in this house, so I have to deal with what there is. Still, I like the pictures. The flowers are so interesting.

      Liked by 4 people

      • lwbut February 5, 2018 / 12:43 am

        I’m glad it’s not just me then! πŸ™‚


      • slmret February 5, 2018 / 1:00 am

        They really are lovely flowers, and I love these shots of them!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. lwbut February 5, 2018 / 12:44 am

    Lovely shots Marilyn! πŸ™‚

    Beautiful colour too!


    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 12:45 am

      Thanks. It’s really a lovely color and this year, it is as close to scarlet as I’ve ever seen in a flower.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. angloswiss February 5, 2018 / 12:44 am

    I had 5 flowers this year and it gave up. You got some good shots. Macro lens can be very frustrating. After pointing and shooting, you often get a macro blur


    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 12:46 am

      I know. This one wanted me to burn incense and say prayers before it would find its focus. I got a few pretty sharp ones and a bunch of rather soft ones.


  4. Roy February 5, 2018 / 1:14 am

    Beautiful reds


      • Roy February 5, 2018 / 1:32 am

        Welcome…would love to see those


        • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 1:41 am

          These are easy enough to buy in a nursery and very easy to care for. Basically, a bright window and water them when they are very dry and twice a year, you will get flowers. Doesn’t get easier than that πŸ™‚


          • Roy February 5, 2018 / 1:52 am

            Thanks Marilyn…still the consistent care of those plants does give a sense of accomplished…coz u are helping a life to grow…

            Liked by 1 person

  5. judyt54 February 5, 2018 / 9:29 am

    these are lovely. One of these days I may just invest in a macro…

    I repotted my monster cactus this last fall and I think I somehow upset the balance. It bloomed not at all at Christmas, and now it’s reluctantly putting out one.bloom.a.week. I’ve never had scarlet, only that serious pink.

    Trouble is, now the damn thing weighs close to forty pounds, dry, and I may just have to divide it, come summer.


    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 4:46 pm

      It sound like it might need to be divided. I hate dividing anything because it takes them another year to recover. I need to repot both of mine … and they aren’t going to like that, either. Cactus are really easy … except when they really AREN’T easy. They are fussy, is what they are.


  6. swo8 February 5, 2018 / 10:59 am

    They’re lovely, Marilyn. What a delight at this time of year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 11:13 pm

      They are a month late, but I didn’t let them dry out quite enough. I have gotten a grip on my watering arm.

      Liked by 1 person

      • swo8 February 6, 2018 / 12:14 pm

        I have a few blooms on mine too at the moment.


        • Marilyn Armstrong February 6, 2018 / 12:21 pm

          It’s nice to have one winter flowering cactus. When all is dark and gray, we have a single flowering cactus to remind us of fairer weather.

          Liked by 1 person

          • swo8 February 6, 2018 / 12:24 pm

            It does bring some hope to the situation.


    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 4:45 pm

      I took new ones this morning. I think the morning light was a little brighter, so the macro focused better. Macro lenses are great except half way through using them, I’m ready to throw it out the window. They do not do what YOU want … they do what THEY want πŸ˜€


  7. sherriepalmer February 5, 2018 / 10:32 pm

    Theses are one of my favorite houseplants. They are so easy to grow and bloom. Beautiful photos.


    • Marilyn Armstrong February 5, 2018 / 11:12 pm

      They ARE easy … if you have the right window and you can keep the watering can out of your paws. Some people can’t help themselves — water they must!

      Liked by 1 person

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