Pink Christmas Cactus – FOTD – 04/06/2019

The pink cactus is blooming up a storm. I think I got the color a little better today, maybe because the light was better yesterday when I took the pictures.

It was a bright but not sunny morning, which is good for portraits and pictures of plants, but not much fun when shooting outside.

The latest flower

The full plant!


And the buds are getting fat! – FOTD – 11/29/2018

The buds are fatter and today, I finally watered the plants. Worriedly because watering too soon can kill all the buds. I did it last year and had to start the whole process of growing buds all over again.

Full bloom

Amidst branches

Which one will bloom next?

Amazing what a little light will do for a macro photograph, isn’t it?

Is it ever going to bloom?

Just so that you understand what I mean that even with the best conditions, you can’t know exactly when your cactus is going to bloom, I included at least one picture of the other cactus which has not one single bud on it. It has stood in the same window and gotten the same light. I watered it exactly when I watered the other cactus.


Yet this plant has not a single bud. Which only proves that no matter how good a gardener you are, you just can’t force everything to come out your way. But you can try.



Flowers of the Day and Probably for the Summer

Every summer, I hang two pots on the deck. I used to hand two fuchsias and some begonias in the corners, but for the past few years, no one is growing fuchsia, so it has been some form of begonia.

This year, it’s on trailing geranium and a lovely pink begonia. I miss the fuchsia and don’t understand why no one is growing them. Someone said they went out of style.

Went out of style? How does something that beautiful “go out of style”? And the fuchsia were very popular with the hummingbirds. I hope they will like these flowers half as well.

One geranium

It was a cool but pleasant day, so while Garry was out — little did I know he was busy taking pictures too. I took a some macros of the hanging pots on the deck and got a few of the lilacs. It’s hard to get the lilacs. They are way high up off the ground. It’s easier for me to shoot them from the deck with a really long lens.

I guess we’ll have to do some work on the lilacs to make them come back a bit lower to the ground!

Two geranium

The weather was so bad this winter, I almost gave up photography, but Garry went out there and took tons of them. He came in frozen solid, but he had pictures.

Pink begonias

After the March storms, he put the camera down and seemed to have no interest in shooting anything. I think he was tired. He made up for it today.

More pink begonias

We both did, actually. Between the two of us, this was a solid 300 shot day, most of them from Garry. But these are mine. It’s definitely macro time!

Deck flowers 2018

I don’t put up so many flowers these days. It’s hard for me to lift the watering can up over my head, so two pots generally suffice. But if someone would please grow some fuchsia, I’d make the sacrifice!

MACRO DUKE – Marilyn Armstrong

Ever taken pictures of your pets with a macro lens? Me neither.

But today I was sitting by the computer about to take the SD card out of the camera and stick it in the reader, when I realized Duke was nose-to-nose with me.

He likes that. He particularly likes sticking his wet nose in my ear and sniffing loudly.

So instead of taking out the chip, I leaned back and took a bunch of doggy macros. Even using a macro lens, we were a wee bit too close for comfort, but it was fun. I’m sure Duke enjoyed it. I think he likes having his picture taken.

Duke smiling


I must admit, this is the most amazing bloom I’ve ever gotten from any of my cacti. Not only are there a lot of flowers — new flowers replacing earlier flowers — but the flowering is lasting a long time.

This morning, while I was fixing my coffee and toast, I realized there was sunshine in the dining room. For the first time in weeks, the cacti were brightly lit. I was torn. Eat my warm toast  –or take pictures of flowers.

Of course I took the pictures because you can make toast any time, but sunlight on flowers is a brief moment. Later, my toast was cold but the pictures came out great. All that bright sunlight let me get some use out of my macro lens.

Macros are such weird lenses. They either do amazing, fantastic work … or they make you crazy with frustration. This was one of the good days. I used a different kinds of processing to catch both the colors and the complexity of the blooms.

Flower of the Day



The light was better because it was the morning. With gritty determination,

One more set of pictures on a sunny day. I think these are better. Sharper, anyway.

The radiant cactus!

With an f2.8 lens, you need the extra light. That’s the answer, I guess.

Two cacti in bloom

One of the interesting things to note is that the color is quite different based on the lens I was using … and the light at that time of day. It is much warmer in the morning, colder in the afternoon. So the blossoms were more red at night, more orange in the morning.

Also, come to think of it, for the macros, I had the overhead light on, so there was incandescent light in the room, too. That would add a lot of yellow and orange.