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Archive for July, 2013

IN THE FIELD: Old Timers

July 29, 2013 23 comments

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Recently I came across a group of plants growing in a bog garden I have never seen or even heard of before. They are known as Rough Horsetail, or Scouring Rush Horsetail. The botanical name is Equisetum hyemale. This species of plant is actually a living fossil and once dominated the late Paleozoic forests about 100 million years ago. Along with many other species of plants and animals from that era, it has survived and continues to flourish even today.

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IN THE FIELD: Really Makes You Wonder

July 26, 2013 22 comments

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Most signs are posted for a good reason…directions, safety, awareness, rules and regulations. And then there are signs that just don’t make sense.

Here is a perfect example. This sign is posted at an elementary school playground. It is informative, as signs typically are, yet it’s a bit off-kilter.

I understand why the school officials would not want children, or adults for that matter, on the basketball court with skateboards, bicycles, scooters, and rollerblades. But what I can’t figure out is why ball playing is not allowed on a BASKETBALL COURT.

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IN THE FIELD: Hydrangea

July 24, 2013 26 comments

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The Hydrangeas have been blooming in the area for a few weeks and have been putting on a grand show. It appears they have received just the right amount of rainfall and sunshine.

The best part photographing this shrub is its locale as I didn’t have to travel very far. It is growing right outside our kitchen window. It has been a pleasure to watch the flowers mature and change from off-white to pale pink, and then to blue and lavender.

The difficult part of photographing this shrub was trying to choose which group of blossoms to focus on.

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IN THE FIELD: Good Morning

July 22, 2013 29 comments

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Water lily blossoms greeting the day under the shade of a willow tree.

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IN THE FIELD: Following My Own Advice

July 17, 2013 30 comments

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Whenever I am out and about just doing stuff, I always have my camera with me. And there are times when I will drive by a good photo op and say to myself “I should go back and get a shot of that.” But for some silly reason, I don’t. I rationalize that I’ll go back another day.

There is an old farmhouse just outside of town that has been lovingly restored to it’s former glory and converted into office space. It is one of my favorite stone buildings in the area, and this year the owners outdid themselves with their plantings. It’s a beautiful sight from the road seeing all the color in the gardens with the Pennsylvania stone as a backdrop.

And yes, I did drive by this site the other day. And almost decided not to stop. But this time I did. I went inside and asked permission to photograph the gardens and their response was “go right ahead.”

Had I waited until another opportunity presented itself, all these wonderful blooms may have been finished. And then I would have been kicking myself until next summer.

So, my advice is, if you see something worth preserving photographically, don’t wait for another day…it may be too late. Unless you like kicking yourself.

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IN THE FIELD: PREHISTORIC OASIS

July 14, 2013 32 comments

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While visiting a local arboretum a few weeks ago, I spent a good part of my time in the shade of enormous trees. It was a rather warm day and the coolness of the woods was a welcome relief from the hot sun.

I had never visited this arboretum before and was looking forward to the experience. I am familiar with many of the species of trees growing there, and even some of the understory shrubs. Although, I learned of many species entirely new to me.

Some of the plants and trees have prehistoric origins, so I was not surprised to find everything seemed to be of extraordinary size. I think that is what drew these butterflies to the area. And they certainly looked right at home. I had never seen such a large grouping of butterflies in one location and never would have believed they grow this large. I am not kidding when I say that I would estimate their wingspan to be at least four feet. Maybe more.

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IN THE FIELD: You Know It’s Summertime When…

July 10, 2013 37 comments

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Saturday morning I visited the famers market here in town. It’s not a large market, but there are a nice variety of foods produced by local farmers and merchants.

The goods available included all natural grass fed beef, baked goods of many varieties, jams, jellies, preserved vegetables, eggs, cheeses, and milk straight from the farm with no processing. In addition to all this great food were two produce stands brimming with seasonal vegetables, fruits, berries and flowers.

I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a great foodie summer!

lr_dhphotosite_DSC2988 Apricots fresh from the tree that morninglr_dhphotosite_DSC2995
Ahhh corn on the cob
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Freshly Picked Tomatoes