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Archive for the ‘Branches’ Category

rosegold

One of the first times I picked up a camera in a serious way was to capture the glory of the rose gold sky I kept seeing as I walked home from work. It was never the same shade of rose or gold of course. I remember once the sky was so magnificent that I paused on the sidewalk and a man standing on his lawn … well, we just shared a moment of staring into the sky at the clouds being lit from below by the setting sun.

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I think one of my creative goals in this strange year is to train my camera to the skies once more. We’ll see what happens. Meanwhile if you’re interested in acquiring these images as prints or on merchandise, please visit links below.

Evening Light in Rose and Gold

Fire in the Sky

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raisedbed

The backstory is that Steve and I moved just as the pandemic struck the U.S. and everything began to shut down around us. Given that he is a cancer survivor and over a certain age that put him at high risk. But we still had to daily get from point A to point B, continue (luckily) to work from home, pack a mammoth amount of stuff (mostly books), navigate in a necessarily socially distant world … and try not to confuse shortness of breath due to anxiety with shortness of breath due to the virus.

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lemon verbena

We made our way into our new home where I immediately began ordering bookcases because neither of us realized that between our two book collections we could probably start our own bookstore. The previous owner had built out the interior of the home wonderfully but the back yard … hmmm … three plus months later we’re still waiting on a contractor to come in with a caterpillar to remove debris and put down loam and on and on … and all of that stuff takes time!

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thyme

Now I tend to come across as a rather calm person but I can be as anxious as any other human and one of the coping mechanisms I have found in my life is gardening. Probably goes back to childhood in Virginia being in the vegetable garden with my dad and helping my mother plant the flowers. Anyway in a time of such great chaos on so many fronts I was determined to have a garden. Steve’s only request was to plant tomatoes and basil.

tomatoes

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lemon basil

mints

spearmint and orange mint

We’ve managed to do that and a bit more. The neighbors must think I’m crazy because I’m outside almost everyday to peek at the garden and take photos, and even Steve has gotten into the habit of asking me each morning, “How’s the garden doing?” I’ve forced him … I mean invited him … to put so much hard work into it that even now he owns it.

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There is no rhyme or reason to the garden though I tried to be thoughtful at first. Keeping in mind pollinators. Keeping in mind bee-friendly. Keeping in mind full-sun, part-shade. Keeping in mind natural pest control. It became too much in this time. I just planted what would fit and tried to err on the side of edibility. The contractor is supposed to come next week. We’ll see … Chaos is still all around … in our personal lives, in the global realm … but for now there feels like space to breathe and to think and to consider planning. DSCN0515

I don’t feel like planning into the distant future right now but I can think about the seasons and what we might plant now to harvest in the fall and what we might plant now that will pop up in the spring. I think that’s good enough for now. 🙂

 

 

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At 5am this bright fellow starts singing. Not the worst way to start the day though I wouldn’t mind the music starting just a little later. 🙂

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It has been many years since I’ve spent considerable time outside gardening in a yard. And what I am relearning is patience … a watched seed does not sprout overnight. Even if the package says “full sun” sometimes you have to move the plants into the shade. Overwatered plants die. I need to wait patiently and let them dry out.  Squirrels, birds and rabbits and I need to find some common ground, and that will take time. I’m not going anywhere and apparently neither are they.

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… great beauty can be found.

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YB1

A pretty perennial. That’s all I know. It is flowering next to the fence line and so every now and then I pick a stem and place in a vase in the kitchen.

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It’s fun (and occasionally frustrating) figuring out  as a photographer and as a gardener how to work with light. Given the state of the yard in the new place I don’t expect an outdoor garden to come into being anytime soon but I’ve been hell-bent on creating a new lush indoor herb garden. Okay, doesn’t have to be lush … just healthy and useful.

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I’m trying to experiment with a few new items especially edible flowers but for the most part it is the canonical basil, oregano, marjoram, tarragon, and rosemary. Last night I took a certain chef on a tour of the evolving herb garden. He asked what was he cooking for dinner and I said, “Hmmm. Chicken with herbs, garlic and lemon.” He harvested what he needed. As he walked away with a handful of green he turned back to say, “Do you think you can plant more tarragon? I love working with tarragon.” Not a problem.

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I foresee a certain person fishing off this pier in the near future. We actually passed a man and his son who said they sometimes catch stripers.

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