Tag Archives: Stouffville

“Carpenter Bee & Russian Olive” – Stouffville

“Carpenter Bee & Russian Olive” - Stouffville

“Bees do have a smell, you know, and if they don’t they should, for their feet are dusted with spices from a million flowers.”
― Ray Bradbury

Spring flowering shrubs and all their awesome scents are now on. It’s good to see so many bees out and about, including this carpenter bee, one of many enjoying the fragrant flowers of a local Russian Olive. The ornamental trees were planted along walking trails a few minutes away from my home and the air is thick with their sweet smell.

These shrubs and the many dogwoods and honeysuckles in the same area provide ample food for the bees and lovely blossoms for me to enjoy and photograph, for a short time at least.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom- @300mm

1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

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“Trilliums & Log” – Stouffville Reservoir Trail

“Trilliums & Log” - Stouffville Reservoir Trail

“If you want a happy ending, it just depends on where you close the book!”
― Orson Welles

A final image of trilliums for the season. This has been a fine year for them. Moderately warm days brought on a slow bloom and cool nights preserved the delicate blossoms. As I roamed the forest a few days ago, I could not help but make a few more images to look back on later in the year. This pair, with the dead log in the background, offered a nice composition and good light. Now the season progresses and other subjects await.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/200 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200

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“Very Small” – Painted Turtle at Stouffville Reservoir

“Very Small” - Painted Turtle at Stouffville Reservoir

“For the newborn and wise, everything begins small.”
― Suzy Kassem

Once more, the unexpected, on a very familiar walk. I’m not sure where this little fellow started out from, but he’s about the size of a quarter and looks to be freshly hatched. He was sitting on a gravel walking path and eventually made it to this grassy section. One thing is for certain, he has a long and perilous journey ahead of him, as sea gulls are always on the prowl for turtles after the spring hatch and it was a long way to the safety of the pond. Hopefully, he made it.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/200 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200

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“Spring Poplars on the Bend” – Stouffville

“Spring Poplars on the Bend”

“See that path in front of you? That path has been laid before you, the one that you’re supposed to take, the one you’re told to take through life…just like everyone else. If you follow that path, you’ll be following all the rules, you’ll always know that you did what everyone wanted you to do and you’ll make it through…
See that path in front of you? I dare you to step off and make your own.”
― Travis Culliton

Looking out my home office window yesterday, as the dark clouds cleared and the sky brightened, I could not help but get outside for a few minutes to stretch my legs and get some fresh air. There is a nice trail system 5 minutes from home. So I took my camera to see what this day offered.

I’ve walked this path hundreds of times and there is always some slight variation in light, foliage, and viewpoint that makes each walk unique. I’ve also photographed these poplars on numerous occasions, including vertical pan shots like this.

However, this day, that slight play of light, new growth, and the bright green grass (including dandelions) made the element s align for this lovely spring image. It seems far too long since I’ve created one of these ‘painterly’ images, which I enjoy so much. Hopefully, this image of a bright spring day brightens someone else’s day.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 70 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 200

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“Cherry Blossom Cluster” – Stouffville Reservoir

“Cherry Blossom Cluster”

“Oh, the wonder of it! The outrageous beauty! God didn’t have to give us cherry blossoms you know. He didn’t have to make apple trees and peach trees burst into flower and fragrance. But God just loves to splurge. He gives us all this magnificence and then, if that isn’t enough, He provides fruit from such extravagance.” – Lynn Austin

I was not expecting to see cherry blossoms this year. All indications were that this would not be a good year for them and I believed the time to see them in bloom was past. Thus, I was very pleased to find this lovely display along the way. I recall there being a cherry tree here but I have missed the bloom for the past few years and did not really consider looking for it. It certainly was nice to come around the trail and see the tree decked out in a resplendent coat of white.

Even sitting here writing this post, I can smell the sweet fragrance of the blossoms filling the warm air as I notice all the fine details and rich colours that are often missed in the broader view. That is the reason I decided to isolate this single cluster, to allow me to look at it, undistracted by the larger show the tree had to offer me.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/125 sec, f/13.0, ISO 200

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“Spring Beauties”

“Spring Beauties” - Close Up

“In a rich moonlit garden, flowers open beneath the eyes of entire nations terrified to acknowledge the simplicity of the beauty of peace.”
― Aberjhani

Can you think of a more appropriate name for these delicate spring flowers, in tones of pink and purple? The Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica) in my area seems to prefer the bases of Beech trees as their habitat, yet some small patches grow in the open. Most of the plants I came across ranged between nearly white to pale pink and patched with striped fuchsia. This particular specimen was light blue with purple tinges in the flower buds, thus the photo.

I enjoyed the slight ‘glow’ of the stems, as the filtered afternoon sun lit up the forest floor. The light this day was spectacular and really showed the colours and textures well. Apart for their unique colours, this small colony sat apart for others and allowed me to isolate them for other plants, which are becoming more abundant as temperatures rise in the forest.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

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“Forest Floor Companions”

“Forest Floor Companions”

“I am learning my way toward something that will make sense of my life, and I learn by going where I have to go, with whatever companions I am graced.” 
― Dean Koontz

At the base of a dead beech tree, these companions add brightness and life, among the dead and decomposing elements surrounding them.

For some unknown reason, the large beech trees in this local forest all died a few years ago. Many of them are very large and old, so it may just be a cycle, as there are many younger trees thriving in the same area. The die-off started a few years back and most of the elders are gone now, the bark peeling off their massive trunks,  branches falling to the ground with every passing winter. I also suspect a new housing development nearby may have altered the water table, ever so slightly, as to affect the older trees. The forest seems a bit ‘wetter’ than usual.

Yet, among all this death, spring offers her bounty of fresh life, in the form of wildflowers, growing in abundance at the base of these dead trees. There are Spring Beauties (Claytonia virginica), also known by some as May Flowers or Fairy Spuds (the roots and flowers are edible), with their bright pink faces and delicate stems. Then there are also Trout Lilies with their mottled leaves and bright yellow flowers. Mixed in among them, though not pictured here are red and white trilliums, to name the most predominant in my area. It seems every year there are more, which is wonderful to see.

To think a few short years ago I would walk these same trails and never notice anything but the white trilliums. There is something to be said for slowing down and just looking. It’s amazing what we can see, if we take the time.

Nikon D800
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm
1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

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