After Owen chopped down the meadow behind our house, we decided to go out and take a few hundred pictures. I really don’t think we can take any fewer.
It was a lovely day. Warm, but not too warm, with just enough breeze to smell the freshly cut grass … or whatever it is we grow back there. I’m pretty sure there’s some grass involved, but there are a lot of other things in there too. Flowers and weeds and crabgrass and dandelions at the least and who knows what else. Probably some random flowers blown there from our garden — or someone else’s.
We saw a pair of Mallards on the river, too, though we didn’t get much of a shot. We both tried, but we didn’t have time to more than aim the camera and hope for the best.
No children playing in the water today, but a father and his young son — he couldn’t have been more than five — were fishing and a couple about our age were kayaking. And there were people there to just hang out and watch the water run by — and of course, us. Cameras at the ready.
I’ve never seen so many buttercups. There were also tall yellow flowers growing in the river in Uxbridge, reeds by the river … and I had to include one picture of the dam just because it was so lovely.
Last year, it almost died. I don’t know what did it. The winter? The long, cold, icy spring? Some combination of that? But it barely grew at all.
I was shocked. As far as I know, you cannot kill Hosta. It is permanent. Endurable. Grows in sun, grows in shade, grows anywhere you put it. Gets so big, you have to separate it to give it room to breathe.
So this year, when it magically reappeared — big leaves in all its many shapes and colors — I was relieved. Maybe last year it was dividing itself from being too crowded in its bed.
This challenge came up exactly when I needed it. For reasons best known to my cameras — ALL my cameras — I cannot get pictures of my spiderwort in their actual color of dark blue. They always come out some shade of pink. It must have something to do with the light and that in the leaf, there is a lot of pink and that’s what the camera picks up.
Since this is a monochrome challenge, I could finally make my Spiderwort their real color: blue. If I could figure out what filter would alter the pink back to it’s “real” color of blue, I’d have done it by now. I have spent hours trying to make those pink flowers the color my eyes see them. Lacking that, here are my monochrome cerulean Spiderwort!
I thought the Columbine had bloomed and died in a week. I was wrong. Apparently, that was merely the leading edge of a whole lot more Columbine.
One of the odd outcomes of the recent windy weather we’ve had because, as we all know, climate change is propaganda created by the Chinese, is that flowers are showing up in places they were never planted. Half of our garden is now on the other side of the driveway. Not roses or other things that have shoots but flowers with seeds which could be blown a distance.
That’s how we found Narcissus over there — which is still puzzling since no narcissus has grown in the regular garden in years, so those seeds were either dropped by a bird or blown from who knows where. Now there’s a lot of Columbine there, too. There has been so much wind and so often, I have no idea what’s going to show up next.
Meanwhile, there’s Columbine all over the garden, at least twice as much as I’ve seen there before.
Solomon’s Seal is not merely a wildflower that has been tamed for gardens. It’s one of the few flowers that will bloom in full shade. It is architectural too. The arches of the plants rise multiple feet into the air with perfectly tidy little bells of flowers hanging beneath them.
Between a few days ago and today, the Columbine bloomed — and started to die. I mean literally, two days. It usually hangs around for a while, but we seem to be hurrying into summer. It seems to be that when spring comes late, the garden starts to hurry towards summer, skipping the usual pieces.
We have Rhododendrons. They were growing here when we moved in. A lot of them died during the very cold, wet, windy winter, but some of those I was sure were completely defunct are coming back.
Partly. New blooms at the end of what appear to be dead stalks and apparently brown, dead leaves unrolling and turning green.
I’ve never seen anything like it. We hacked down the giant, overgrown barbed-wire rose bushes (they’ll be back because I think they are not killable by normal humans) and lost some of the Rhododendrons in the process because they were intertwined.
That was the problem with the roses. They tended to completely take over the entire garden. They were small roses with the most brutal thorns I’ve ever encountered. I just thought these were “small rose bushes” because that’s how they were described.
What they are really are small roses on huge bushes that spread out and send runners underground. They pop up in the damnedest places.
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