Category Archives: Nature

“Spring Flowers at the Ramer Farm”

“Spring Flowers at the Ramer Farm”

“Simple beauty can be found anywhere, you simply need to be receptive to it.”
– Ed Lehming

Spring is slowly pushing out the cold and damp that has been so dominant here for what seems like months. With the warming air more and more wildflowers are beginning to show their faces.

Fading now are the forest dwelling spring ephemerals which are being replaced by the taller and more colourful field flowers. The flowers pictured here are Dame’s Rockets, which seem to bloom wherever they please. They prefer to move about, from place to place, popping up where there was nothing the previous year.

As I noted a few weeks ago, my wife’s cousin and close friend, Paul, passed away and we are now in the process of cleaning up his home and farm. There’s lots to do, lots of memories, and short time to do it. One of the benefits of being on the farm though, is being able to walk around and enjoy the property. Between farm equipment and aged buildings some very beautiful scenes emerge and I could not resist bringing my camera with me to capture some memories of these times.

So, spring appears to be in full swing here, punctuated by this patch of Rockets, some white choke cherry blossoms in the background, and the farm buildings, with their rusty roofs, to complete the composition. There is beauty everywhere, even in sad times.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/1000 sec, f/3.2, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

Advertisements

“Early Meadow Rue”

“Early Meadow Rue” - Thalictrum dioicum

“The soft spring breezes played with the tiny flowers of the plant causing then to dance and twinkle in the light.”
– Ed Lehming

As I’ve said a few times in the past, one of the great things about being a photographer is having an eye for the fine details. I’ve found myself becoming an astute observer, noticing things that I would have passed by a few years ago.

These smallish plants grow along the trails and are not particularly eye catching, until the blossoms appear in early spring. In this case, a male plant with dangling yellow flowers. I did not notice any female plants, which have bluish-purple flowers, in the area, but my timing may have been off by only a day. It’s interesting that there are two distinct plants, male and female. The species name: dioicum comes from the Greek word that means ‘two households”.

So, I have discovered another plant to research and to be on the lookout for next year, leading me to be able to make even better photos of them when I know when to expect them.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/250 sec, f/9.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“What a Difference a Week Makes”

“What a Difference a Week Makes”“Nature amazes me still. Some changes are so gradual that you barely notice them while others happen in the blink of an eye.”
– Ed Lehming

Last week I took a much needed break at lunch and headed for a quick walk through the woods at North Walker Woods. For those who follow regularly, you will know that this is a place I like to go to quite frequently. It’s close to home, the trails are well maintained, and it offers me a broad profile of southern Ontario forest flora. It’s also fairly open, so bugs are not too intense.

I was just there last week enjoying the multitude of trilliums and other wildflowers and the forest was just beginning to show its spring flush of bright green, yellow, and red emerging leaves. The forest was still very open and bright, allowing lots of sunshine to reach the forest floor and feed the delicate spring flowers. This ‘open’ spring forest and its delightful colours was shared in my “Trillium Trails” post only a few days ago.

As the title of this post states, what a difference a week makes. With a few warm and sunny days, the entire forest is now in full leaf. It’s also quite surprising how many trilliums are still in bloom, largely due to the cool weather we had up till a few days ago. They have already started to turn the pink-magenta colour that is their final phase of blossom and soon they will be replaced by ferns and other deep green undergrowth as the forest settles into summer mode.

It’s been a wonderful extended spring on the trails this spring, with almost all the spring ephemerals blooming at the same time and remaining in bloom for close to two weeks. A highly unusual but delightful season, yet things must progress and I am thankful for these times.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/50 sec, f/11.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Freshness”

“Freshness”

“Spring is like the opening of a window on a bright sun-filled day. Freshness replaces the stale air and fills us with energy and promise.”
– Ed Lehming

Ferns are a real pleasure to watch in the spring. Seeing them gently unroll on the forest floor is an active part of the spring. For me, it symbolizes the season so well. It’s a gradual, carefully timed. and repeated process.

This image captures the ‘fiddlehead’ of an ostrich fern as it begins to stretch upwards to the warming sun. The more it open, the more energy it absorbs in early spring, developing the plant before the canopy of trees high above blocks the sun’s light and puts the ferns into shadow for the summer.

I used a fairly narrow aperture to keep most of the fiddlehead in sharp focus while allowing some softness further down the stalk.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/40 sec, f/14.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

Starflower (Lysimachia borealis)

Starflower (Lysimachia borealis)

“Delicate white flowers hover above the deep green leaves as the next wave of spring flowers emerges, replacing trilliums and bloodroot. The canopy overhead thickens, and filters the light that makes it to the forest floor. Starflowers now add drops of brilliant white into the deepening gloom of the undergrowth.”
– Ed Lehming

As the trilliums mature and fade to soft pinks and magenta, the forest floor is once more transformed. The light is now filtered by maturing leaves. I’ve been noticing the starflowers along the trails for a few weeks now. They are quite unique with their seven pointed leaves.

They seemed to sit there, poised to bloom but needing a bit more warmth to start the cycle. Yesterday, they all seemed to bloom at once, the forest filled with these lovely small white flowers.

Here I was able to capture a group of three, growing on a moss covered stump and touched by a narrow shaft of sunlight. It was a good day to be in the forest, the air was filled with a warm and gentle breeze and the mosquitoes and blackflies were pretty much absent, a blessing at this time of year, especially when getting down low to make photos of the smaller wildflowers.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/60 sec, f/9.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Spring Blanket”

“Spring Blanket”

“A blanket of white blossoms flowed across the forest floor in an endless sea of trilliums that filled my vision with it’s beauty.”
– Ed Lehming

This spring, I set out on a few occasions, hoping to get some spring wildflower images and after a few fairly disappointing visits the forest erupted with trilliums like I have never experienced before.

I think this is primarily due to the cool, wet weather conditions this year. Flower development was delayed or just slow but it seems that everything just ‘pooped’ at once. Where a few days ago the forest floor was simply a mat of dried leaves, thousands upon thousands of wildflowers pushed through and bloomed. It was quite a stunning transformation that reached as far as I could see. The woods were literally blanketed in wildflowers, with the trilliums brilliant white dominating.

In the image above, I got down low to depict the trilliums as a wave that flows  across the small rise and continues to the horizon. I tried numerous shots at various aperture settings to try to capture this stunning scene and finally settled on this one, though it still does not do justice to what I witnessed.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/320 sec, f/7.1, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

 

“Trillium Trails”

“Trillium Trails”

“As the days warm, fond memories of spring walks remain with me. Bright greens and the freshness of wildflowers whisper from a recent past.”
– Ed Lehming

Memories of this spring will stay with me for some time to come. The cool and damp days provided ideal conditions for the spring flowers to emerge and remain fresh for a long time. It was as if a month was compressed into a week.

There is also the freshness of the new leaves forming, a kind of lime green with splashes of orange. It’s like no others colours in the year; it’s just ‘fresh’.

The photo above is a scene I see quite frequently as I hike the ‘perimeter’ trail in Ontario’s North Walker Woods near my home. I go there frequently because they are so close, access is easy, and the woods offer me a great amount of subject matter for my photography. The woods also provide me a peaceful place to be when the stresses of life build. I’m able to easily immerse myself in these woodlands and criss-crossing trails.

This view has now changed, the trilliums are almost all gone and the undergrowth has thickened to a deep green wall of leaves, limiting the view deeper into the forest.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm

1/60 sec, f/9.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com