Category Archives: Photo Journal

Social Media Day

Don’t look it up, I’d be afraid Congress has actually named such a day 🙂

And Damn It!  There is such a day.  World Social Media Day was June 30th, 2019.

Ok, so I’ve been neglecting my blog.  Neglecting all of my social media.  But I’ve been filling every moment of everyday actually living.  Now there’s an odd thought, well not really.

It is actually a very healthy thing to do once and a while – unplug from the electronic world.

Continue reading Social Media Day

Back in MP Country

Well, I’ve meandered back into the lands that produce some of my favorite wild flowers.  And this has to be one at the top of my list – the Mariposa Lilly.  High desert delicate beauty.

Mariposa Lilly - 1+SPFx2+C1

I love how the little green bee is clinging tightly to a stamen.  🙂  And since I’m back here, I plan to re-post one of my personal favs where I tried to describe this flower.  Not re-post per se, but I set it back in as one of my pinned posts at the top of my home page – can’t miss it. 🙂

Try it Again

LOGOz

Bluebell

I’m back for one of those sporadic posts.  I’m taking the day off.  Time to regroup a little, get the gear back in order, and give the old muscles a bit of a rest.

I encountered this little beauty on the trail yesterday, with its little spider friend . . .

LOGOz

 

 

Dragonflies and Catalpas

My shadow was short this morning.

I had hit the trail late and the sun was close to being directly overhead.

I should have started earlier, much earlier, because it was already 90 degrees and with 70 percent + humidity, it’s stifling out here.  The air is heavy, thick, hard to breathe.  Kind of like you’re underwater, but it’s hot water.

More like thick steam.

Continue reading Dragonflies and Catalpas

Great WaterLeaf

Yesterday, a friend took me out to a conservation area I hadn’t visited before.  It was a beautiful Spring day as we drove, and then hiked, deeper and deeper into the woodlands.  We emerged from the Midwest Jungle upon a fifteen, or so, acre lake.

As we strolled about, I noticed this wildflower.  It was in a small cluster of like flowers, but this small grouping was the only one of its kind along the shore.

I haven’t positively identified yet, but it looked pretty close to a flower called the Great WaterLeaf.  And I thought, I like that name, even if it’s not this plant because I see so many wildflowers have been given a name with the first word being “Common.”  Like Common Milkweed or Common Dandelion or Common Clover.  And I don’t regard any part of Nature as being “Common.”

So whether or not this flower is the Great WaterLeaf, I find it to be “Great.”

Enjoy 🙂

Great WaterLeaf

Great WaterLeaf 2

Serpents and Milkweeds

I was out of breath as I reached the top of the bluff.  But it was worth the hike.  I now had a falcon’s-eye view out over the South Fork of the Snake River.  Absolutely beautiful.

The sprawling flood plain to the East was fully plowed and planted.  Potatoes, wheat, and alfalfa.  And maybe a few specialty crops lay low in the distance.  Broccoli, cauliflower, rhubarb, and cabbage.  Casting different hues of green.  Forest green to fern, to mantis, to dark pastel, to castelton.

Continue reading Serpents and Milkweeds

Chicory

Well, I’ve slowed down a little on my writing.  Time is a proportionate thing.  Right now I’m in training.  Training for my next adventure.

So as training time increases, time for everything decreases.

But since I’m out and about as part of my training, and since it’s Spring, it’s time for wildflowers and flowering trees.  I guess I’ll stick with the Photo Journal until the right combination of forces conspires to persuade me to tell another story.

Enjoy 🙂

LOGOz

Photo: Chicory – an amazing plant. You can use its roots as a coffee substitute.  And now for the close-up of the close-up . . . Hope you like the color Blue.

Chickory+C1

Hawthorn

It’s that time of year.  The flowering trees have started to bloom.  It usually begins with Wild Cherry and Plumb.   Then come the Redbuds and Magnolias.  Then Dogwoods, Catalpas, Buckeyes, and Mimosas.

There are a lot of trees in my area with small, white flowers.  Probably too many to know all of them.  But the other day, when I was out on the trail,  I spied this little beauty laying in the grass.  It only took a second to realize that it wasn’t a ground flower.  There was an entire blanket of these blooms lying under a tree.  The Hawthorn Tree.

This was the first time I took a close look at this particular blossom.  And it was quite a gift for the day 🙂

The center sort of looks like a creature with unfolding tentacles.  Perhaps a Sea Anemone.  Take in its beauty and use your imagination.  What do you see?

LOGOz

Missouri Hawthorne Tree Flower +C1

For Vera

Look closely.  What do you see?

About three years back, I was walking along the roadside and I saw Red Clover blooming in the ditch.  I bent over and snapped a picture, a close up, without even giving it much thought.

Later, back home.  I opened the pic up on the computer screen and my jaw dropped.  It was, is, absolutely stunning!  At least I think so.

What we often regard as single blooms are really composite flowers.  A cluster of miniature florets forming that glorious efflorescence.  And this is what I saw.

Red Clover+C1

A common plant.  So common that people don’t seem to notice it.  Just walk on by.

The Bumble Bees notice it , though.  It seems to be one of their favorites.

But just look at those tiny composite flowers.  The angle of the ones at the top produce the effect of looking at flames dancing in a fire.

But straight on, you can see the tiny detail of each independent bloom.  The red veins of each. Those vascular bundles of Xylem and Phloem that extend the entire length of the plant. The Pistil, holding the reproductive organs.  Each of these tiny flowers will become a seed . . . once the bees do their work.   It will transform and appear much like the head of a Dandelion, before the tiny umbrellas balloon its many children to their distant destinations.  To start the cycle anew.

And to the side and lower views, you see each of the microblooms’ petals.  What an intricate design.

Like a cluster of diminutive orchids.

So many focal points.  The camera can’t decide.  It zooms in on the tiny hairlike projections in between the hues of crimson.

Three years ago, with the snapping of a picture, I snapped back into life.  Back into the life that matters most.  Appreciating the real world and all its glory.  And this re-awaking was fueled by what some would call the commonplace.  Would scarcely give a glance to such a plant.  A wildflower.  An uncultivated beast.

After all, it’s not a Rose . . .

My friend Vera and I were talking about this in relation to my post Wildflowers yesterday.  The uniqueness, the beauty, the ability to recognize and appreciate it before it’s gone.  And I think she said it perfectly when she said:

“It’s funny how we are inclined to categorize things as common or rare, forgetting/ignoring the fact that each one is unique within their own kind. It takes wise reminders to be conscious of that. To have the capacity to appreciate beauty while it lasts, or indeed, transience, in general, demands high wisdom and appropriate temperament.”

And so I dedicate this post to her.  And if you really want to read some fine poetry, and by “fine” I mean amazing, you should check out her blog.  To Dad With Love Poetry.

Until the next wildflower . . .

LOGOz

 

Wildflowers

I captured this image when I was on one of my hikes in the Northwest.  High desert wildflowers were everywhere.

Many were flowers I had not seen before, like this one.  Many others seem to be common all over the states.

I always wonder what evolutionary adaptations these plants have made to thrive in the area where they live.  Is it the altitude, or the days’ photoperiods, or the temperature, or the elements in the soil, or the amount of precipitation?  All combining to produce something with just the right colors and the perfect perfume to attract the pollinators that will ensure their reproduction.

And they interlink in the complex fabric of life so they help ensure other species’ survival.  Even our own 🙂

High Desert Wildflower 4 + Retro

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Bees

I took this pic a while back when I was traveling through Michigan.  It really doesn’t matter where you are, Bees have a direct impact on all of our lives.  Without them, pollination would be severely impaired and we’d have a lot more difficultly breathing and eating.  Basically we need them to live.

In China, they’ve killed off so many bees that people are are having to hand-pollinate fruit trees.  Check out these pics from the Huffington Post – These Photos Capture the Startling Effect Of Shrinking Bee Populations.

And for a nice, easy read on how hives function, check out this blog from Big Island Bees titled: Bee Hive Hierarchy and Activities.

Of course, I like the pic because I think the bee is just beautiful.  A perfect work of art with Nature as the master artist.  Oh, the flower is pretty too 🙂

LOGOz