Tag Archives: earth

“Vervain Among the Dunes”

“Vervain among the Dunes”

“In every outthrust headland, in every curving beach, in every grain of sand there is the story of the earth.” 
― Rachel Carson 

I get great enjoyment photographing plants and animals in areas away from home and the sand dunes of Sauble Beach are no exception. I came across many plants which survive well in the dry sand dunes which bound the back of the beach. Many still need to be looked up and this one surprised me. A simple Blue Vervain in an unexpected environment.

Close to home, Swamp Vervain is fairly common but not Blue Vervain. The plants are similar, but differ in the shape of the flower spike. I was also expecting Blue Vervain to be more of a meadow or wetland flower, based on my experience, so to find it in the dunes was interesting. It did seem quite healthy in the dry environment, but I expect even the dunes hold surprising amount of water this year with high lake levels. The conditions may have been just right and nature continues to amaze.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/60 sec, f/10.0, ISO 200

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“Papineau Creek Guardian”

Papineau Creek Guardian

“Solitary. But not in the sense of being alone. Not solitary in the way Thoreau was, for example, exiling himself in order to find out where he was; not solitary in the way Jonah was, praying for deliverance in the belly of the whale. Solitary in the sense of retreat. In the sense of not having to see himself, of not having to see himself being seen by anyone else.”
― Paul Auster

I have admitted before that I have a love of solitary trees. They stand alone, each with a story. They stand as silent witnesses to the world that moves around them, with no apparent support from their peers. I’m especially fond of trees that cling to the edge of water. The roots holding firm to land while being provided abundant water from below.

This beautiful red pine captivated me. The forest floor was littered with its needles, blocking off invading weeds. The creek seemed to bend towards it, just far enough to make contact with the roots. I know, the creek was there first and took advantage of the creek but that was the image my mind saw.

At this point in its course, Papineau creek has just come through a series of beautiful rapids and has slowed as it passes the pine. It’s a very serene image that I wanted to share here.

I came across this place in the fall a few years ago and returned this past weekend. It’s a very peaceful little park, with no signage leading you to it. I like to look at it as a private retreat, though I’m sure local residents know about it.

iPhone 5s back camera 4.15mm f/2.2
1/220 sec, f/2.2, ISO 32

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Dawson’s Magnolia” – Edwards Gardens, Toronto

“Dawson’s Magnolia” - Edwards Gardens, Toronto

“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
— Rainer Maria Rilke

A final visit to the magnolias of Edwards Gardens in Toronto, at least for this year. I so enjoyed my day of walking the grounds and enjoying all the wonderful flowering trees. This is a great time of year. There are splashes of pinks, purples, whites, and purple among the new foliage in its multiple shades of green. The world around me is fairly glowing with new life, and I love it!

The tree above stood out above all the others I saw that day. Delicate blossoms cling to teh dark leafless branches in a spectacular display. The blossoms almost seem too big for teh slider tree to bear. All this against teh backdrop of new greenery and a slightly cloudy blue sky. It just says, “Spring” to me.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 82 mm
1/160 sec, f/46.3, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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or my website (some images available for purchase)
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