Last month I went to the 25th Annual Spring Garden Tour held by the Soroptimist International of the Sierra Foothills. I was going to rank the gardens as I had appreciated them. After thinking about that for a while, I came to realize that it’s not really fair to rank these six gardens, as each garden has its own personality, just like the people do, that tend them. I have, however, decided to share some photos of the garden that I liked most of all.
Butterflies Abound in this Happy Wooded Garden
Fabulous Rose Garden
Dainty Yellow Peony
Pretty Little Colombine
This garden sat up on a hill in Grass Valley, California. It was host to an aviary with happily singing finches and canaries. The butterflies appeared blissfully happy, and with every step that I took, I would find a lovely surprise in the form of some sort of flower that I had never seen in its particular color. You could tell that the people who grew this garden had spent many hours laboring in it. I would have liked to have had the time to sit out in it with a glass of wine in my hand to just drink in all the sights and colors of this magical place. I can’t imagine daily living in that environment. Well, I can imagine it, but I think the best way to see the garden would be to fly through it. No tending, no trouble, just sheer availability to loads of wonderful flowers. Oh to be a butterfly, just for one glorious day. Imagine…
Why is it the daisies Seem so struck by the bugs? Is it in their color Or their look from above?
For me it’s the wonder In these flowers so white The attraction they have Though it often seems trite
I do love the daisies As they sway in the breeze With the free way they seem To do just as they please
Bonnie DiMichele 2017
Just a little whimsical thought as many men work on my new addition. It’s loud, dirty, and may be slow in progress. My beautiful backyard is an absolute mess but it will make my home so that we can live on one floor. This surely is a thought I never had as a younger person. I refuse to let those thoughts make me feel old…I’m simply being practical.
Last weekend we went in search of wildflowers at Gold Lake Lodge in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. I thought there wouldn’t be many left but I was pleasantly surprised.
I had just been lucky enough to get a good photo of a Fritillary butterfly when another orange flying object caught my eye. It didn’t look at all friendly and I didn’t want to get too close to it as a few of my former close encounters have not proved to be kind to me.
Could it be a Cow Killer?
I took my photos to the ranger station and was sure they would know what it was. They had no idea, nor did the owners of Gold Lake Lodge. I bought a field guide to the Sierra Nevada and have spent a lot of time on the internet trying to figure out what this beast is.
Perhaps in the Bee Family as it was Rather Hairy
I can tell you more about what it is not than what it is. Can anyone help? If you have the answer, please let me know.
While we were in Maine, we happened upon an area that sparked our interest. We needed a place to walk after several days of being on vacation. We stopped at The Rachael Carson Wildlife Refuge outside of Kennebunkport. It was a beautiful walk and it was easy to see the effects the tides have on the area as the walk is elevated.
The Tidal Effects
It reminded me, at times, of being back in my childhood home of Santa Cruz, California. It was quite wooded and there were the occasional hitchhiker’s. In this one area, by the Pink Lady Slippers, was were the hitchhiker’s landed on my hat and took a ride into town. I thought I was feeling raindrops, as it was a bit drizzly, but once we got back to Kennebunkport a gentleman in the store started commenting on the inchworm travelers that had attached themselves to my hat. He thought I might be upset that they were there. I like inchworm’s, and I had been watching them on a sign while we were taking our walk, so it didn’t trouble me at all. Well, it did a bit because I wanted to make sure that they were happy in their new plant homes.
Wild Pink Lady Slippers
I think they probably liked hanging from the trees much better than the plants we found for them. We didn’t have time to drive them back to the Wildlife Refuge. Now that I’ve returned home, I can only hope that they are living lovely lives in Kennebunkport, Maine.
It doesn’t get much better than finding the scent of a favorite childhood treat in your own backyard. I can’t tell you how this Iris was acquired, and I am sure I did not pick it for its scent. It popped open last year for the first time and the scent was just like grape soda. I couldn’t wait for it to return again this year.
Grape Soda Bearded Iris
This next Iris reminds me of a walk along the cliffs near the Pacific Ocean and the little beauties that we found there one day. Iris’ come and go so rapidly that, if you don’t happen upon them, you might miss them altogether. This one grows in my front yard.
Pacific Coast Iris
Thank goodness that I failed to post this blog last week beacause we went to Bodega Bay last weekend and walked along the cliffs. We saw Gray Whales and lovely wild flowers and very near the end of our walk we came upon this little Iris, growing out amongst the weeds. There were very few of them left.
Wild Iris at Bodega Bay Headlands
At long last, I finally came upon some Water Iris’. We came around the corner in Vina, CA a couple of weekends ago and there was, what looked like, a sea of yellow. I jumped out of the car to snap a few photos. I asked the girl at New Clairveax Winery how long they would last that way. She said that she had never noticed them, in the last four years that she worked there, until someone brought them to her attention. I don’t know how one could miss them. They were amazing!
So there you have it. Seasons come and go. Even the season of the Iris’. Hope you didn’t miss them because you’ll have to wait almost a year to see them again.
Last weekend we went on a hike in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. We left from a place named Gray Eagle Lodge. The pathway was often shady and you could hear running water most of the time, which somehow makes it seems a little cooler.
Pathway to the Wild Flowers
There were some flowers left and some that were fading away. The insects didn’t seem to mind that the flowers were going away. I wonder what is of interest when all the pollen seems to have been removed from the flower…..
End of the Flowers
This poor plant was almost completely gone. Good eating for the bugs, I suppose. I liked the shadows that were cast from what remained of the leaves.
There is a very small daisy that grows in the mountains and I have been trying to capture it, as my eye sees it, for ages now. I know this isn’t in perfect focus. Nothing about it is in focus, but I like the softness and true color of it.
Pretty in Purple
The hike was lovely and the surprise waterfalls were energetically running with cool mountain water. It’s this crazy little daisy that I cherish most. I might never take another picture of one. It’s simplicity is what draws me to it. I appreciate the simple things in life, whether it be a hike, a sunset, or a photo. The simple things are by far the most precious.