Friday, May 09, 2008

The Colorful Array of a Spring Day

A steady rain marked, and dampened, the earlier part of the day...but also brought on the orange color in that tulip I showed you yesterday. Pretty nice, huh? Do you see the bud that's still green? How bout the little pair of marks on it...(it should enlarge some for your viewing) these look like teeth marks to any of the rest of you?

It's like Bunnicula's been here.

Leaves unfurled on the apple tree about a week ago and this morning the tree was dotted with the tight pink and red buds of apple blossoms about to be.

In the background, you can see some tiny white strawberry blossoms on the hillside below the tree.

By the time I got out of work around 5, the sun was beginning to shine again, although some high clouds remained...and I happened by one of my favorite plant purveyors to find them almost over-stocked with delightful blooms and plants of all shapes, sizes and colors.

I'll go back another time soon, when I can linger and wander up and down the aisles, with no plan in mind, just to see what all they have. But I knew that could easily turn into a lengthier visit than I had time for...but still, I let my eyes trail lovingly over a few things I certainly don't need or can necessarily afford, but could happily have welcomed in a weaker moment.

I've been discussing with Patrick the frustrations of photographing the color purple in some lights, particularly in regard to capturing the color we remember seeing on things such as violets and pansies.

I've begun to suspect this problem is worse on cloudy days, owing to ultraviolet light filtering through. After all, flowers are designed to use those invisible (to us, but not insects)rays with their brilliant shadings and textured petals to guide their potential pollinators into the sweet center of the bloom.

So while this is entirely an instinctual notion in my head based on some limited science, it feels like a somehow reasonable explanation for why the more intense colors sometimes don't photograph the way they appear to us in certain light conditions.

Anyway, these violas helped to further the discussion in my head, especially when I was trying to get the photo just right before uploading. At least this vast array ended up including some tones that ended up about the color we always seem to be looking for. They are about halfway up in the great mass of them.

It's almost overwhelming the selection arrayed before us...and even more mind-boggling to know that it'll all have gone and been replaced once or twice by Memorial Day weekend. Look at all those pansies!

Although I had a tight rein on myself and only a few bucks to spare, I did end up selecting some single flowered yellow marigolds to set out near the assorted roses up and down the fence. And it is also the right time to be planting snapdragons, so I picked up a few of those...the rocket variety that get nice and tall, in a few different colors I'm fond of.

Finally heading for home, I couldn't resist stopping by a golf course along the way for a shot of the tulip array lining the entrance to the parking lot. Aren't they something?? I'd like to see them finished off with an under-planting of grape hyacinths...but I'm a little obsessed with them, too. I suppose that's impractical here, for what may well be a temporary (annual) planting, that'll be dug up and replaced with something else when they're done.

We've got clear skies tonight, which bodes well for me doing a little planting in the morning before the predicted rain moves in for the rest of the day. In light of that, I'll nip off for a little sleep and catch up with you later.

OH. Everyday, I keep forgetting to mention this. Here on Cape Cod, we are expecting something big in the next few days, as 2008 marks the return of our region's brood of 17 year cicada. They only live for a few weeks, but in some places swarm rather intensely during that time and emit a sound that easily cracks 100 decibels.

I'm fascinated by nature, but these guys might creep me out. They are uh-uh-gly. Go ahead, look for yourself, I'll wait. See? Am I wrong?

Their intense, short-term feeding frenzies can sometimes spell trouble for trees, since they are the feast before egg laying, which is actually done by breaking open young tree limbs. Well-established trees, They said, should be fine...but the swarming was probably going to be a big annoyance, and enough to keep you inside in the morning. At night, they just sit in the trees and eat...and watch us with those evil red eyes. Mr. Mind much?

Anyway, a few weeks back the stories were all over the radio and the newspapers and they said the hatch might begin by Mother's Day, which is Sunday for any of you slackers who aren't paying attention.


Butch said...

If I have to choose one of your beautiful pictures ( I wouldn't want to. but if I had to ) it would be the multiple coloured tulips. Wow!

I see you took a picture of your second home. ;-)

Greg said...

They are some fantastic looking tulips, Butch--I'll give you that!

As for the nursery being my second home...I actually try to spend as little time there as possible! Not only does it cut down on the expenses, but it gives me more time to tarry in my own bit of the green (although it's plain to see from the legions already planted at home that I've spent plenty of time there in past years!)

But, gee, it's fun to visit now and then!

somewhere joe said...


I don't think I've ever seen single marigolds. They're lovely.

Did you know that carnations and pinks, like grapes, prefer a slightly alkaline soil - unlike most flowers.

Greg said...

Joe, I just love the single marigold!! There are never too many, as they seem to go quickly at the start of the I was glad to put my hands on a few, they are so simple and delightful!

I didn't know that about the pinks/carnations and alkaline soil. Gee, they seem to thrive next to other acid-lovers...imagine what they might do if I gave them what they liked!!