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“Soul Patch” (Bearded Iris) Nikon D300, 420mm (VR 200-400mm F/4G w/1.4x Teleconverter), F/8, 1/100s, -0.3EV, ISO 640

One of the perks of having a garden is the opportunity to share plants with other gardeners. Many perennials benefit from being “split” and it is a great way to achieve a diverse landscape that is also, rich in history.

Prime example – the bearded irises shown here came from my good friend and next-door neighbor, Nancy, and have a 100+ year-old lineage! Imagine that! 🙂

Here’s the story as told to me by Nancy:

“They were in my mother’s grandmother’s yard and were transplanted to my aunt’s (my mother’s sister) yard in Hanson, Massachusetts. She shared them with me twenty-five years ago when she moved to Florida. I planted them in my mother-in-law’s garden in Beverly Farms and then moved them to this house in 1988. Whew! Since then I’ve shared them with many people who love irises”.

“Drawn” (Bearded Iris with Hoverfly) Nikon D300, 550mm (VR 200-400mm F/4G w/1.4x Teleconverter), F/11, 1/50s, ISO 640, Slightly Cropped

Aren’t I a lucky, lucky girl?And so are all of you since now you get to enjoy them as well! 🙂

I hope to split and pass some of these “heirloom” rhizomes onto some other lucky gardener(s) one day. Just the thought of them growing and blooming long after I’m gone is somehow comforting to me. My link in the “proverbial” chain of life, so to speak, albeit a teeny-tiny one.

Aside from irises, other transplant “gifts” I’ve received (as well as given) include: rhubarb, daylily, peony, hosta, azalea,  rhododendron, monkshood, balloon flower, rudbeckia and butterfly bush. I’m sure there are more but this is all I could think of! 🙂

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Something a little more fun from me today! 🙂  

While photographing rain-soaked hosta leaves, I was already drawn to their wave-like form. So, when a small black gnat decided to do some surfing, well, it’s times like this you simply cannot believe what you are seeing through the lens!

"Shooting the Tube" (Black Gnat Surfing on Wet Hosta Leaves) Nikon D300, 105mm F/2.8G Macro, F/8, 1/50s, ISO 640, Black & White with Blue Tint

Since the foliage colors of this particular hosta are a variegation of green, white and yellow – not the hues that evoke a strong feeling of the sea – I decided a color change was necessary to successfully convey the ‘surfing gnat’ idea. So, the image was first converted to black & white and then tinted using blue. I also bumped up tonal contrast a bit using Color Efex Pro.  

Gnarly, dude! 🙂

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04/21/10 Update

Sean Kane requested a close up of the ‘surfing gnat’ so, here he is! 🙂

"Hang Six" (Surfing Gnat Close-up)

 (If you listen really closely, you can hear ‘wheeeeeeeeee!’ 😉 )

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