The very first sighting of wildflowers of the Spring 2021 for me is this beautiful grouping of coltsfoot (should that be coltsfeet?). I have been keeping my eyes peeled looking for these since a reader from Ontario (Jim, you know who you are) alerted me to them a couple of weeks ago when he posted a photo of one. I spotted a grouping along the side of the road when driving by a few days ago and had to go back to take this photo. It is a very busy road, but as these were (and still are) the only ones I have seen, I had no choice but to take my life in my hands and cross the road, dodging cars as I went and to crawl into the wet and muddy ditch to get this for you all. (A bit of poetic license has been used there but I felt a bit of drama was called for.) Below in the post you get a behind the scenes look of me photographing them in the ditch, thanks to Steven who was with me. This is, I confess, the first time I have ever noticed these Coltsfoot flowers – also members of the Aster family. That’s an example of how this project has opened my eyes to new flora in our area. So happy WWAD for all Flower a Day viewers! I hope you have a day filled with wonderful discoveries.
Today we have some deep purple crocuses that are just a couple in a thick patch growing under the magnolia tree. Although the flower is of course the subject (it is for A Flower a Day, after all), I was specially happy to get this little bee also in focus, with his tiny head speckled with golden pollen as he took what he needed from this bloom. I am told that bees will not sting you in this situation when they are so busy foraging, that you can even stroke them and they wouldn’t be distracted. I didn’t want to test this theory on this little fellow, but was just happy that he, along with many others was finding something to take back to the hive so early in the season. I wish you all a happy Sunday and send a hug out to all who read this.
We are back indoors today for Flower a Day, featuring – by special request for a special friend – a Pink Flower Day. I am hoping that it cheers and warms more than just that friend – in fact I hope it has that effect on all of you seeing and reading this. These little kalanchoe flowers are so delicate with their tiny yellow centres, the varying values of light to dark pink and the accents of green setting everything off to perfection. We can learn a lot about how colours work together by simply observing the natural world around us. I hope your day is filled with beautiful colours and light, my friends!
I did manage to produce a sunny day (well, maybe I wasn’t entirely responsible for it 😉 but it happened anyway, for which I was grateful) and so there will be a lot to do in the garden, preparing for new growth. In the house the flower arrangements of dried hydrangeas still give us pleasure, even the ones that seem to have dried less successfully. This beautiful display features some fairly intense blues, along with the paler, gentler ones and the soft, warm browns are a lovely compliment. I know this is possibly pushing you to your hydrangea appreciation limits but please indulge me for now. We will have plenty of time for fresh new flowers and I do want to share some of my favourite ones here before then. We will be back to crocuses and other spring flowers again before long, don’t worry. I hope you enjoy the lovely tones and textures in this, to give you a pleasing floral start to your day.
To give us all a break from crocuses for our Flower a Day we are back to the wonderful variety in the Hortensia (hydrangea) family with this lovely pink one. These soft petals make such a lovely posy, contrasted with the greens that have not yet changed colour. I wonder if they would retain these colours wherever they were planted? I know you can affect the colours by what you feed the plant (or even if you bury an iron object into the ground near the roots) but I don’t know if this colour is strong enough to resist such influences. It’s not my plant so I will never know, but maybe a reader would be more informed. I hope this lovely pink posy brings a smile to your faces today, my friends.
After the colourful crocus image posted yesterday, today’s is an attempt to get the sun back into our corner of the world. I don’t know if I have any influence in that department, but if the sun does shine for you today, you’re welcome. 😀 This was growing in the same patch (we call them all Molly’s flowers) as yesterday’s and is even a little shorter in stature. Behind them grow some that are a deep purple and are taller, which, if they open up (a bit of warmth might do the trick) I will try to photograph. On my walk yesterday I spotted some growing in a muddy ditch. Talk about treasures, they were lovely, as if shining in that drab late winter environment. Spring brings us so much hope. We must cling to it as it makes it possible to get out of bed every day and keep going. For those heading into fall and winter, that also brings a promise of a new spring (just a little longer to wait).
It’s strange how we can come across treasures in the most unexpected places. I saw this piece of curled bark as you see it below on the gravel drive outside our hairdresser’s house when I was waiting for Steven, I had got out of the car with my camera to search for any Spring flowers I might find in her beautifully kept gardens and spotted it at my feet. I instinctively picked it up and marvelled at the detail and the different tiny forms of lichens that were arranged all over it. I put it in the car to take home with me so it could join my collection of other mosses and lichens. I went in search of flowers but found none and came back and examined the bark more closely. I decided it would be better to put it back on the drive, photograph it and leave it where I had found it. I did so, got back in the car and almost at once I changed my mind and decided to bring it home with me. I knew if I left it there it would be crushed by the wheels of the next car and it would be lost. I also felt that few would appreciate this amazing piece of natural art (at least that was my excuse for ‘liberating’ it from her driveway). Today you can enjoy it too. If you click on the image above or below and then again on it in the gallery you will see the detail enlarged. It’s really worth zooming in so you can see the arrangement of those tiny orange dots and the blue grey colours perfectly, along with the fans of lichen spreading in clumps over it. Isn’t it the most beautiful thing? You see below how it looked as I first saw it.
These brilliant yellow kalanchoe flowers surely would brighten the darkest corner, as if a spray of sunshine were sitting above the fleshy (and edible) leaves. We haven’t had much sun in the past few days, so I needed a bit of bright colour to lift my mood and warm the temperatures that have teasingly turned from warm and spring-like to suddenly cold again. The fire is lit once more and curtains drawn in the evening to keep the heat in. We know we are on the right side of winter, here in the Northern hemisphere, but I do wish the weather would not be as fickle as it has been just lately. I have a cure for it in this Flower a Day photo, which I send with my warm hugs to you all! Keep smiling, my friends.
My number one Flower a Day scout called me the other day to say she had found another subject for me, so a few days later I climbed the stairs of an old barn to find an evening class in progress. The low sun filtered through a window onto a busy (small, masked, distanced) group of potters at work. The clivia was just next to the window amongst a group of pots filled with plants, so that the light fell nicely onto these beautiful flowers and the surrounding leaves and greenery. I sat on the floor, getting my jeans coated with clay dust, cocooned in an atmosphere of artistic creativity and the quiet humming of potters wheels turning and got the photograph you see here. There was such a lovely feeling in this little loft studio, the evening sun warming the room, that I felt I could have stayed there all evening, enjoying the friendly productivity going on all around me. I love how my project has been contributed to by some of my friends locally, making it even more meaningful for me and perhaps to all of you. We need to remind ourselves that this community spirit is still alive and well – and living at least near Canning, Nova Scotia. Keep that spirit up as you can, it’s too important to lose it. (But I want to know how those flowers stay so pristine in that dusty studio…)