Gardening for the Soul

My daughter, Kara, has a lovely garden.  It’s just steps from her door, and it brings abundant color to her living room.  She’s a great gardener, tending her plants with the care of a “flower mother”!  Her garden is a riot of color: blue, red, yellow, purple, orange, white,
and pink.

Gardeners know how good it feels to dig in the dirt and watch their plants grow.
It surely feeds our inner being, our soul.  It’s a connection to the earth and life.

This year Kara’s garden is extraordinary because she dedicated it to the memory of our close friend, who passed away in May.  She told me she wanted to have a beautiful garden because our friend was such a beautiful person inside and out, and always doing things for others.  I think our friend, who was a fantastic gardener herself, is watching over Kara’s garden and smiling. 😉

“Plants give us oxygen for the lungs and for the soul.”  ~Linda Solegato

Kara’s Garden~

~Zinnias, Salvia, Petunias~

~Impatiens, Salvia~

~pretty orange flower~

~pink daisy-like flower~

“When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it.  If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant.”
~Author Unknown

~daisy-like flower bud, unfolding~

~purple daisy opening~

~Kara’s Garden….a burst of color from containers!~

Kara’s Garden is not situated on a large piece of land.  She and her husband have a condo and the garden is on the deck!  The deck has benches, so flower boxes fill the benches, railings and the floor below the benches.  She even has a corner with an Herb Garden.  Two “upside down” bagged tomato plants hang from the upper deck, loaded with large green tomatoes!  Those tomato plants are about 6′ tall!
An entire garden in containers!

Do you like to garden?  Do you use containers?

Thanks for visiting.  Please excuse the construction on my new theme!  I’m still playing with the features! 😉

Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

 

Advertisements

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fleeting Moment

“Life is one of those precious fleeting gifts,

and everything can change in a heartbeat.”

~anonymous

**********************

The butterfly holds its position for a very brief time, then flits to another flower to eat, its rest lasting only a fleeting moment.
I’ve found that when visiting flowers butterflies are still for just a fleeting moment.  They open and shut their wings, quiver and then they’re gone!  To find one sitting perfectly still
is an absolute joy for the photographer~if you can find a fleeting moment in your life to capture one of these beauties! 

“To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality.  It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and
intellectual joy.”  ~Henri Cartier-Bresson (French Photographer 1908-2004)

And this one from Pink Floyd~

“When I was a child

I caught a fleeting glimpse

Out of the corner of my eye.

I turned to look but it was gone

I cannot put my finger on it now

The child is grown,

The dream is gone.

I have become comfortably numb.”

~From the song by Pink Floyd, “Comfortably Numb”, from the album “The Wall”, 1979.

*the photo was taken in the gardens of the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan.

Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

Daisies~ Forever Love

Daisy Time

by Marjorie Pickthall

See, the grass is full of stars,
Fallen in their brightness;
Hearts they have of shining gold,
Rays of shining whiteness.

Buttercups have honeyed hearts,
Bees they love the clover,
But I love the daisies’ dance
All the meadow over.

Blow, O blow, you happy winds,
Singing summer’s praises,
Up the field and down the field
A-dancing with the daisies.

Golden daisy.

Flowers don’t worry about how the’re going to bloom.  They just open up and turn toward the light and that makes them beautiful.  ~Jim Carrey

 I dedicate this post to my beautiful friend, who valiantly fought a horribly tough illness for months with an incredible upbeat attitude, but sadly passed away a week ago.   She was elegant and funny, giving and loving, talented and modest, and much more.  I miss her terribly.  My thoughts and prayers are with her family, whose ache is a million times my own.❤

Grace & Peace~

Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

Beautiful Longwood Gardens, Pennsylvania~

 How fair is a garden amid the trials and passions of existence.  ~Benjamin Disraeli

On our recent spring trip, we visited our cousin who lives near Wilmington, Delaware.   There are  at least two beautiful gardens in the Wilmington area that are connected with Dupont estates.  One is Winterthur and the other is Longwood Gardens.   Longwood happens to be nearby in Pennsylvania.   Both garden estates are spectacular and seeing them in the springtime was wonderful, as all the early flowers had bloomed and trees had budded.   Put these gardens on your “must-see” list.  You will not forget them.  I will post Winterthur’s home and gardens at another time.  

Both Longwood and Winterthur have incorporated naturalized plantings.  As you walk through the woods, you are greeted with redbuds, cherry trees, creeping phlox, scattered daffodils, blue bells, azaleas and many more delights.   It truly is a treasure to behold;  a fanciful, magical setting, and one I’d love to create at my home.  (in my lifetime?!!)    Join me as we begin our walk through Longwood Gardens in the more formal flower beds.   Then we’ll walk through the woods, passing a lovely pond, and finally finish in the huge conservatory.  Let’s go!

Please click on a photo to start the gallery.

I hope you enjoyed our abbreviated  tour of Longwood Gardens.  There’s so much more to see than what I presented here.

If you’d like to learn more about the Gardens at Longwood, click here.

Thanks for visiting today…have a great day!

Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

Frederik Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids, MI.

Hi everyone!

I’ve posted about Frederik Meijer Gardens before;  but we went there in late April, and I wanted to share some of the spring photos.
Frederik Meijer began one of the largest grocery chains in Michigan.   It ultimately grew to serve Illinois, Ohio and Indiana too.   Since Grand Rapids is his home base, he began Frederik Meijer Gardens as a place where the community and visitors from all over the world, can come, relax and enjoy the surroundings.

 A pond in the garden with a simple bench for reading or relaxing.

A pond in the gardens with an inviting bench.

 

A simple shed turns into a magical place with pink dogwood branches making an entrance arch.

A shed is tucked away under spring flowers, like a secret house.

Pretty falls sparkle in the sun; splashing water on the rocks as it tumbles to the bottom.

Cool spring water flows softly down the rocky falls, diving into the pond.

The palace must be her home, she thinks, as this dainty royal purple tulip bows her head.

A heavy water-laden purple tulip bows royally.

After a sleepy winter, the pond awakes with soft colors, mirroring the new buds around its perimeter.

A pond shows off its reflection with new spring buds.

A quick storm blows through and sets off a flurry of activity in the sky.  The clouds form amazing, cotton candy puffs and colors to dazzle the eyes.

The storm is over; the clouds have a party in the sky.

Shades of blue and pink decorate the late evening sky. What a treat!

Thanks for going to Grand Rapids with me!
Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

Les Belles Fleurs L’hiver (beautiful flowers in winter)

Hello great blog readers!
I’m ready for spring!  If we can’t have spring let’s have some nice, deep snow!  I haven’t had a chance to cross-country ski or snowshoe yet.  It has been a different kind of winter for our whole country!  The south is freezing and the northern ski slopes are struggling for lack of snow.

I’m controlling Mother Nature today and I declare it’s SPRING in my house!
I like to buy inexpensive bunches of tulips at the market in the winter.  It brings color into the house and it brightens a dreary day.
Plus….it gives me something else to on which to practice my indoor Macro shots.  I’ve taken photos of all the pens, boxes, plants, lamps, paperweights, coasters, floors, candle holders and plates in the house already, so this gives me some variety! 😉

The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size.
–  Gertrude S. Wister

.......

*******

........

........

.................

..........

 ~And just a reminder from Mother Nature that winter isn’t over yet…..we got 2″ of snow overnight. 😉

..............

Have a colorful, happy day!
Judy

All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

 

Who knew?

Ack.  I’m struggling with macro shots.  I’m trying to learn.   Aperture and f numbers, speed, let in more light/let in less light and focus.  Then there’s the tripod, the lenses (right now I use extension tubes: 30 mm/20mm/12mm until I save for a regular macro lens) and the lens cleaner.  Oh, I forgot about the SUN, overcast, wind….I’m sure I’ve left out a lot more.  To me it’s like trying to get all the components of dinner on the table at the same time!

Practice, practice, practice!  I was out practicing the other day and found some moss* to shoot.  I got all set up, looked through my lenses and WOWZA!  Who knew?   Moss* has the coolest spikey flowers!  I had no idea until I looked through my lenses.

It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.    ~Henry David Thoreau

*********

The  “flowers or flower heads” with some frost glinting on the moss in the background.

**Ok…now I’m not sure what this is!  After researching “Moss in Winter”…I couldn’t come up with the version here at all.  It resembles moss, and I read there are 15,000 different varieties of “moss” in the Americas.  I’ll keep looking.  If any of you know what this is, let me know! 

 Peace~
Judy
All text and images are copyright © 2002-2012 and are the exclusive property of Judy Johnson (unless otherwise indicated). All Rights Reserved. All Images are protected under United States and International copyright laws. None of the images on this site are in the Public Domain.

We didn’t do anything!

Just about every year we have a set of twin fawns prancing, galloping and eating their way through our yard.  They ARE so cute!  But, just like with their adult counterparts, I really don’t like them eating the plants!  

It is so much fun to watch them.  I’ll see them when I pull in the driveway, and put the car in park.  They are unafraid of anything at this young age.  They will dance and run around the car, chasing each other!  They stop to look at me in the window and then take off after each other again!  It’s like having a couple of young children running around!

When I took this photo, my husband and I were both outside working in the garden.  All of a sudden they were near us.  I got my camera and they came closer.  They were about 15 feet from me when I snapped the shutter.  I think they have the look on their faces like: “WHO US?  NAW.  We didn’t do it!  We didn’t chew the plants!”  Soon their mom “called” and they ran off into the woods, white tails bouncing behind them, and were gone until the next time.