Tag Archives: Nature

“Ramer Farm – Late August”

“Ramer Farm - Late August”

“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.” 
― Aldo Leopold

I instantly fell in love with this quote. Spending any time at all on a working farm makes you realize just how precarious our food supply can be, that it requires constant work to yield any kind of crop, and that deep green fields can be among the most deceptively hot places you will ever experience.

Earlier this week I stood in this place looking at my wife’s late cousin Paul’s farm from a new angle. We were meeting with staff from Park Canada and the Toronto Region Conservation Authority to discuss a wetland restoration project that was planned in a parcel of low pasture land, which is seen here as the tall grass area just behind the tree stump. This area is fed by several springs just north of the property and, in the past,  provided a water source for Paul’s dairy cattle. Some time prior to his passing, Paul gave up his cattle herd and focussed on grain crops and the pasture sat generally idle, with the exception of a few cattle he allowed a friend to pasture there.

Standing here and reviewing the restoration plan and surveying the idyllic scene before me gave me a whole new appreciation for just how tightly interwoven our natural surroundings can be, even in a developed area like a farm. From here I see layer after layer of different environments unfold before me, from the bright green hay field, to the wetlands; the feed corn that grows on the flowing hillsides, till they meet the summer sky, with its billowing clouds. Among this multi-layered landscape, the barn and farmstead sit like a guardian, overlooking it all.

I know that Paul was involved in the process of developing this portion of Rouge National Urban Park, but sadly, did not survive to see it fulfilled. But, he left us his legacy in this little slice of paradise he called home for so many years.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/500 sec, f/11.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
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“Trillium Variations”

“Trillium Variations”

“Nature is filled with surprises. It’s the unusual that we notice. That’s what I love about being in it, there is always something new to make you wonder, How did that happen?”
– Ed Lehming

This is a new one to me, and as I stated in the quote above, nature always has surprises for me. Now, I have seen a single variant like this. Right behind our camper and directly outside the window, there is a single trillium which has blossomed green and white for the past few years.

Recently, I came across a variation of this where the entire flower was green. Here I found a bonanza, all the variations in one spot, though unfortunately, the white blossom had not opened fully.

Of course, once you spot a variation like this, in a forest filled with thousands of trilliums, you come to expect the unexpected and notice it far more often.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/400 sec, f/9.0, ISO 400

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

“Sweet Pea Blossoms”

“Sweet Pea Blossoms”

“Like all sweet dreams, it will be brief, but brevity makes sweetness, doesn’t it?”
― Stephen King

Much of the conservation land surrounding my home, including parks and hiking trails, was, at some not too distant time, farmland. It’s difficult to visualize, as I walk through now forested areas. Every now and then though, evidence of former use makes itself known.

On one particular site, many perennial sweet peas can be found at the perimeter of meadows, especially now that they are beginning to bloom. They are quite lovely and I thought worth sharing.

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 Facebook page:
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“It begins…”

"It Begins..."

“And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.”
― Meister Eckhart

The feeling is there, the air warms, and bird song permeates the mornings. Spring is afoot and new growth begins to show signs of the forest stirring from its long slumber.

On a walk this past weekend, triggered by nicer weather and seeing the Coltsfoot blooming in roadside ditches, my eye was keen to see signs of new growth. The forest was still quite gray, seeming dormant, but it did not take long to see that it was shifting. A few small green plants showed among the dull leaves, grasses seemed to be perking up, and then I came across this small shrub, the first delicate leaves unfurling like fingers offering their gift, from the protective bud, and hints of pink or purple flowers showing within.

I’m not a botanist, so I don’t really know what variety of bush it might be, perhaps a lilac? This would be a strange place for a lilac, amidst the fairly thick forest, but nature has offered me many surprise in the past. I’ll have to check back in a few days, when it has leafed out more, to have a better idea on that.

For now, I’m happy to see the promise of another new season.

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

1/200 sec, f/5.0, ISO 800

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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Tuesdays of Texture – January 24, 2017

“Icy Shell”

“Ice contains no future , just the past, sealed away. As if they’re alive, everything in the world is sealed up inside, clear and distinct. Ice can preserve all kinds of things that way- cleanly, clearly. That’s the essence of ice, the role it plays.”
― Haruki Murakami

The image I chose for today was made a few days ago, as I hiked through a local conservation area. I came across a log which was coated with a thick layer of ice. The temperature was just above freezing, which caused a thin film of water to form on the ice. What really interested me was looking at the ice itself and being able to see the individual ice crystals, each a miniature lens to view the wood beneath the ice.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/50 sec, f/3.5, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Forest Floor Colours”

“Everything turns in circles and spirals with the cosmic heart until infinity. Everything has a vibration that spirals inward or outward — and everything turns together in the same direction at the same time. This vibration keeps going: it becomes born and expands or closes and destructs — only to repeat the cycle again in opposite current. Like a lotus, it opens or closes, dies and is born again. Such is also the story of the sun and moon, of me and you. Nothing truly dies. All energy simply transforms.”
― Suzy Kassem

Back at a computer after a week of travel, and time to add some context to my simplified posts of late.

The image above was taken on a whim. Autumn was just approaching and a few leaves had made an early descent to the forest floor, still littered with last years’ remnants and several green plants. The contrast between the dry gray leaves from last year, the newly fallen, and the still growing plants told the story of continuous cycle in the forest, made more noticeable to me by the bright colours, randomly scattered.

iPhone 5s back camera @ 4.2mm
1/30 sec;   f/2.2;   ISO 125

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Sunflower Glow”

“Sunflower Glow”

“I don’t think there’s anything on this planet that more trumpets life that the sunflower. For me that’s because of the reason behind its name. Not because it looks like the sun but because it follows the sun. During the course of the day, the head tracks the journey of the sun across the sky. A satellite dish for sunshine. Wherever light is, no matter how weak, these flowers will find it. And that’s such an admirable thing. And such a lesson in life.”
– Helen Mirren

A simple presentation of a sunflower blossom. I say simple, yet on further viewing, it is so also so intricately complex. From the shape of the petals, to the beautiful patterns on the face. Not to mention the radiant colour of the blossom itself. I’ve quoted Georgia O’Keefe her a few times, and her insights are so true, the closer you look at flowers, or anything in nature, I mean, REALLY look at it, the more incredible it becomes. It draws you in and you see details that at first you may have missed.

Take moment and look deep into the face of this blossom…

Amazing, isn’ it? The things we miss at first glance.

Nikon D800
Nikor 24-70mm f/3.5-4.6 @ 52mm (12mm extension tube)
1/8 sec, f/29.0, ISO 400

High Resolution image on 500px:

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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