Reworked Florals

IMG_3329Queen Anne’s LaceIMG_2620GrassesIMG_2634Columbine

IMG_2639Morning GloryIMG_2654Columbine

Some older photographs I have reworked using a number of iPhone and iPad apps.

The Queen Anne’s Lace image reminds me of old tintypes.

I love the coloured ones because they have a very retro look. They remind me of old Technicolor postcards.

Photo Hunt: Triangle

This weeks Photo Hunt theme is “Triangle”…

Since I haven’t been out and about recently (due to Mom’s having been sick last weekend as well as preparing for her 87th birthday party tomorrow) I am falling back on some old photos (pretty much as usual) but they are favourites.

Floating Heart (Nymphoides aquatica)

Although they grow in most temperate areas of North America and Asia, Trilliums are the official wildflower of Ontario. It is illegal to pick or dig up Trilliums in their wild state in federal and provincial parks (partly because doing so damages the plant and they were, at one time endangered in this province). It is absolutely illegal to pick “Nodding Trilliums” (I know I took some photos last spring of some Nodding Trilliums but can’t find them…). Trilliums are, however, available from nurseries so you can enjoy them in your own garden. They are one of the first wildflowers to be seen in spring and last only a week or so.

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum)

Photo Hunt: Fuzzy

Oh… And Happy New Year!

When I bought my original Canon digital point-and-shoot camera, I loved it. However, about 2 years later I was finding the photos just weren’t as sharp as when I first bought the camera and the resolution was disappointing. I attributed it to the fact that I had accidentally dropped my camera on the metal frame of my bed and had to send it in to be repaired. So I finally went out and bought a newer version of the same make and model. Again, I was so pleased with the clarity of the shots. However, within about 2 years, I was getting those disappointing shots with poor resolution. The only way I could get a clear shot was if I tipped the camera on its back… And while I DO happen to take a lot of shots that way — shots pointing up from the underside of roadside weeds — the fact is that is is somewhat limiting.

My problem for so long was that Digital SLR cameras took a lot longer to get view-screens that were either big enough or you could use WHILE shooting. Due to my diminishing eyesight and loss of clear field of vision (I have floaters and posterior vitreous detachment which hamper my ability to see clearly, especially in my left eye which is my dominant eye) I need a large view-screen and find using the viewfinder impossible.

Now, however, digital SLRs have come out that make things a LOT easier for me — large view screens, screens that rotate(!), screens that stay on while you shoot(!). I finally went out and bought myself a little Christmas present and fuzzy images like these…

Queen Anne's Lace (in seed). Fuzzy x2!

Queen Anne's Lace

will be a thing of the past.

Unfortunately, because of the Christmas rush and the truly crappy weather, I haven’t had a chance to get out and USE my new camera!

PhotoHunt: Orange

This week’s PhotoHunt theme is “Orange”.

For most of the last 150 years, Orange Lodges had been a fixture in most Canadian communities and were the most prominent political and social organization. The first Orange lodge was founded in 1830, in Brockville, Ontario by Ogle Robert Gowan.

On early maps of Ontario, aside from churches and post offices, the Orange Lodges were marked. Since I spend a lot of time driving around the countryside, I often see buildings which I suspect may be former Orange Lodges. This was the first one I identified. It is disused and was moved from it’s former location some properties away.

Apparently, despite the date of 1888 on the marker on the building, Loyal Orange Lodge No. 69 of Mansfield received its official warrant from the Grand Lodge of British America of Kingston and Brockville in 1847 but the lodge was in existence before this official recognition. Presumably, the 1888 is the date of this building. The Mansfield Orange Lodge was the social centre of community activities in the Mansfield area, namely the area of the sixth, seventh and eighth concessions of Goulbourn between current-day regional road five and the Munster Sideroad.

Loyal Orange Lodge #69, Mansfield, ON, 1888

When we moved, we had to leave behind our beautiful, well-established honeysuckle. A few weeks ago, the chair of the Landscaping dug it up and took it into her yard. I was so mad because it probably won’t survive the move. I bought a pink one. I can only hope it does as well as my orange one did.


Perhaps my favourite annual is Nasturtium. Not only is it bold and beautiful, it is also versatile. It is a lovely addition to salads. The leaves are hot and spicy and the flowers sweet.


PhotoHunter: Purple

It’s been a while since I posted for the PhotoHunter themes. I was busy moving and just haven’t had the time or energy to post (plus, a few of the last ones I couldn’t think of any photos for….).

Purple (this week’s theme) is a dodge.

Recently, Mom and I have been taking a drive along a favourite road, Bolton Road (which eventually becomes Kyle Road), in Augusta Township. It’s a lovely drive and there are a lot of wildflowers starting to bloom. If you check out the link above, you’ll see what other little surprises were in store for us.

Meanwhile… “Purple”!

Alfalfa- Medicago sativa

Red Clover, (Trifolium pratense)

Cow Vetch - Vicia cracca

Bladder Campion - Silene nivea

Vetch and ant

Sunday Drive

On Sunday, Mom and I went on another Sunday drive, along a favourite route. Bolton Road, which eventually becomes Kyle Road, runs south from Highway 43, west of Kemptville just east of Merrickville, all the way south to Throoptown on Highway 21. That’s a distance of about 22.56 km (14.02 miles). It is a lovely drive along mostly dirt roads.

We continued after the trip right down Bolton and Kyle Roads by driving back up to where Land O’Nod Road starts at Bolton Road.  Land O’Nod Road ends at Highway 15, south of Merrickville, a distance of 10.19 km (6.33 miles). Like the Bolton/Kyle Road trip, it is mostly dirt road and lovely. Don’tcha just love the name Land O’Nod Road? Makes me sleepy just thinking of it!

(Robert Louis Stevenson)

From breakfast on through all the day
At home among my friends I stay;
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the Land of Nod.

All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do —
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountain-sides of dreams.

The strangest things are there for me,
Both things to eat and things to see,
And many frightening sights abroad
Till morning in the Land of Nod.

Try as I like to find the way,
I never can get back by day,
Nor can remember plain and clear
The curious music that I hear.

The round trip from Highway 43 down Bolton/Kyle, back up to Land O Nod Road, along Land O Nod, and up Highway 43 is about 65.64 km, give or take. If you add the kms for the trip from our house to the point on 43 where we turned to go down Bolton, which is about… 115.22 km so the total evening drive was about 180.86 which is a SHORT evening drive for us.

On the Bolton I stopped to take some photos of wildflowers. There was alfalfa which I had never seen in the wild before… or never seen in a field, either, for that matter. It looks a lot different dried in a bag or compressed into pellets for feeding gerbils. It is really pretty and looks like a sort of unkempt clover. Same family, I guess. The flowers are purple and mauve (pronounced “mowv,” not “mawv.” It’s a French word and you look like an idiot if you pronounce if mawv, no matter how many times you hear the likes of Martha Stewart or Oprah pronounce it [incorrectly]. And, in case you need to know “foyer” is pronounced “foy-ay” not “foy-er”. Again… it’s French and that’s how they pronounce it, so they ought to know).


Birdfoot Trefoil, Red Clover

Just a short hop down Bolton, I spotted a turtle in the middle of the road. Since it didn’t appear that there was anything resembling turtle habitat either where it was headed or where it had come from, I picked it up off the road and drove along (quite some considerable distance) until I found the bridge over the Rideau River. I released it there.

It wasn’t terribly pleased to have been rescued but I think it would have been less pleased to have been run over by a 4×4… Every so often, it would start scrabbling in my hand (it was too powerful for Mom to hold) and try to get away… then it would pee on me, the steering wheel, the console, Mom…

I took some photos and identified it later as a Blanding’s turtle.

Blanding's Turtle (isn't he cute?!)

Continuing on our way, just about a mile down the road from releasing the first turtle, I spotted a Snapping turtle in the middle of the road…

Snapping Turtle

...not so cute...

It was a smallish one, about a foot wide and about a foot and a half long, not counting the tail and head. Knowing how fast and vicious they can be, I took a few photos and then looked for something to move it off the road with. The last time I encountered a Snapper on the road, it was about 3 times as big and so heavy that all we could do was bulldoze it to the side of the road. Even so, when it reared up, we were in danger of losing a finger!

This one being smaller, I figured if I could find a stick I could try the old Indian trick of getting it to bite on the stick and lifting it up and carrying it hanging from the stick. But since I couldn’t find the appropriate-sized stick (and, indeed, don’t know if this actually works, I resorted to using my car scraper/brush, flipping it on its back, and pushing it across the road. I  flipped it back over on the other side of the road into a field.

One thing about Snappers is that they STINK! Whether it’s because of their diet or the fact that they wallow in marshes, I don’t know.

Again, it didn’t appreciate the effort I had gone to but since a 4×4 went roaring by a few minutes after I moved it off the road, I think it was in its best interests to be moved. So there….

Snappers are endangered, here in Ontario, and you can make a report to the Ontario Department of Natural Resources, along with other endangered flora and fauna.

Angry… SO ANGRY!

This evening, I went over to the unit I moved out of (50 feet away from where I am now) to make sure the garbage was all out on the curb.

I opened the gate and just about screamed.

My entire garden… Ten years of planting… Ten years of love…. was gone.

When I moved into the new unit. I had made sure that maintenance and the Move in/Move out committees knew that I wanted my garden and that it would take a little time to move them. I was assured that I had until the fall to move them as many plants need to be moved after they are done for the year… not when they are blooming. All my neighbours knew I was going to  be moving my plants and knew that I wanted them.

Apparently, the person who did it was someone from Landscaping.

When one of my neighbours (who was one of the people I had made the arrangement with to delay moving my garden went up to her and told her to stop because I wanted my plants, she daid “too bad!” and continued.

To make things even more outrageous is that this is the SECOND time someone on Landscape has taken it upon themselves to rip out or order someone to rip out my garden.

Two years ago, when they were replacing the fences, the Chair of Maintenance which is the committee responsible for the fence replacements came over and we went through the garden and we worked out what needed moving and what needed protecting. I had my nephew over and told him what to do. He was doing it when someone from Landscape came over and ordered him to tear everything out… I came home and found my garden destroyed.

I managed to salvage some of the plants and replaced what had been destroyed. The garden was almost back to it’s former glory… and now this…

Although they replaced the back and side parts of the fence two years ago, they appear to be replacing the entire fence, again, including the new parts. This may have been the impetus but there was absolutely no reason for them to just barrel in and start tearing it out.

I could see if they had contacted me and given me a deadline and I didn’t do it…. But they didn’t.

They didn’t contact Maintenance (the Chair who knows me and knows I wanted my garden). They didn’t check with my neighbours who all know I was going to be moving my garden over the next while AND where I am. AND it isn’t as though I moved out of the co-op altogether! I am 50 feet away and was home the day she took it upon herself to rip out my garden.

I fired off an email to the Board and the Landscape Committee demanding an apology and suggesting that I should be reimbursed for the plants that I can replace (the clematis cannot be replaced…). I also said that there need to be rules followed so that this never happens again.

I am so angry I don’t know if I will be able to sleep…

PhotoHunter: Vertical

As luck would have it, just before starting to look for photos for this, I came across something which I will include as an addendum to my post… Trust me… VERT-I-CAL!

As for MY vertical, for some time I have been taking photos with my camera lens aimed vertically. It’s amazing what you see when you just look up!

The Icarus Project

NASA has been expressing interest in a project crafted by Robert Harrison of England.

While NASA spends millions on every space project, Robert Harrison has spent about $6000 USD to send his Canon A560 up 35km in a homemade housing attached to a helium weather balloon…. and gotten back stunning images and video.

Now THAT’S vertical!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

PhotoHunter: 3

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum)

The Trillium is the official flower of the Province of Ontario. It is illegal to pick or dig up Trilliums in the wild in Ontario, though not to plant ones purchased from growers.

Read the rest of this entry »

PhotoHunter: (Ooops) Spotted

Yes…. I messed up. I am a week ahead. I spotted that when I went to tnchick’s blog….

I will “balance” things up, next week….

Snug as a bug....

Amber, asleep under a leopard-spotted rug.


…are spotted.

And, it wasn’t until I got home and edited my photos….


…that I spotted someone looking back at me from this Spottted Joe Pye Weed. Can you spot him? (HA! A two-for-one! Or is that three-for-one?).

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