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One thing I love about being a nature photographer is the opportunity to showcase uncommon flowers and elevate them to an artistic level. I’m pretty sure if you were walking my garden you would most likely skip right past Astrantia major ‘Rosea’. This very small, and sometimes unruly cottage perennial just cannot compete with the more showy hydrangeas and daylilies. 

"Lucky Charm" (Astrantia major 'Rosea' aka Great Masterwort) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/8, 1/30s, -0.7EV, ISO 640, Built-in Rear Curtain TTL Flash, -2.0EV

You don’t normally see the florets bent over like this, but after the bunch was nibbled upon by (I suspect) our resident cottontail, well, there you go. 🙂 

Surprisingly, it wound up being a blessing in disguise as it prompted my taking a closer look. The blooms appear so different from this perspective and I’m really liking that central blush of pink radiating out to pale green, white and yellow. 

Yes, quite charming! 🙂



  1. WOW! I’ve never seen this flower before! Very pretty and very interesting looking.
    And there is NO WAY that I would walk past that flower! I might even find some that you didn’t even know where there. 😉

    • Ha! Well, okay. I suppose I wasn’t talking about you, Michaela! I’d probably have to keep you away from all the areas of poison ivy ‘cuz no place would be safe from your camera!! 🙂

      It is a pretty little flower when you get all up close and personal with it. I like it because it has a very woodland look and is perfect for shady areas.

      Thanks, M! 🙂

  2. They’re ALL uncommon to me… even the common daisy… lol.. Have to confess though that someone has planted some coloured smelly things in my garden this year… Nothing quite as interesting as your selection though, and certainly not as striking as this shot… Real nice against that black backdrop Tracy.. 🙂

    • Ha! I suppose that is true, Brian, but I suspect you know more than you let on.

      You have a mystery gardener?? How nice! 😉

      Thank you, Brian!

  3. Just beautiful.

  4. What an unusual and gorgeous bloom. I’m really loving this! So striking on the dark background too.

    • Thank you, Amber! The light was hitting it just right and a pop of flash made sure we could see the center. In this case, underexposing to get that black background was sort of necessary as rusty brown-red garden mulch doesn’t look as pretty! 🙂

  5. I just love the way this shot lights up. What size are these blooms?

    • Thanks! Great masterwort puts up clusters of these florets on thin stems, rising above a mound of large leaves. Each floret is only about 1 inch diameter (so pretty darn small!) There are some really colorful varities (pinks and crimsons). A great, easy-to-grow, rather low-growing perennial for the shade! 🙂

  6. Mastercraft, I mean masterwort, well you know what I mean. Beauty.

    • Ha! I know you meant to say that I am a master at my craft…right? 😉

      Thanks, Brian! You are kind! 🙂

  7. What a great picture!!! I don’t think I have seen this plant before, I must check my plant-litterature soon. 😉

    • Thank you, Truels! It isn’t a very common plant and not many people would even bother to photograph it which is probably exactly why I do. 😉

  8. This is a great shot Tracy and I love how you do bring my attention to these beautiful flowers. You capture them so well and show them in a different beautiful way. 🙂

  9. Wow, this looks like something from a James Cameron Sci Fi. Great shot, Tracy. Love the one below too.

    • Huh. I didn’t get Sci Fi from this but, that is what is so great about photos! Everyone sees something different.

      Thanks, Dave! 🙂

      (Good to see you weren’t afraid of a long-legged arachnid…) 😉

  10. a beautiful photo and a lovely post – don’t know how I missed this earlier as I did a Dad’s day post too.

    • Thank you, Tammy! 🙂

      Have you signed up to receive e-mail notices of new posts? Just one click on the ‘sign me up!’ button near the bottom of the main blog page does the trick and then, you won’t miss a thing! 🙂

  11. This is beautiful! Great unusual composition and also light and colours are great. I can imagine it in really big format.

    • Thanks, Tomas! I would LOVE to hear those very same words from a buying customer – lol! I think ALL my work should be displayed in REALLY BIG format! 🙂

  12. i totally agree with the comment from someone up there about it looking like a scifi Avatar creation. Like each of those little . . . things is going to jump out into the air like magic sky-jellyfish. or something.

    • That was Dave and actually, I do see it now! Probably because I watched War of the Worlds the other night….this sort of looks like the eye-thingys the invaders used to scout out humans. Weird! 🙂

  13. Just finally catching up after my Maine trip and sorting through all of my photos. This shot is breathtakingly beautiful!!!

    • Thank you, Carol! Welcome back! I hope you had a good time! 🙂

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