As Graceful as a spring flower

Ben over at the daily post has chosen ‘Graceful’ for this weeks photo challenge, this is what he said.

Gracefulness is a tricky quality — it manifests itself as an effortless, subtle harmony between a subject and its environment.

Personally, there are few things I find more graceful than spring flowers. During the dark months of winter, I long for little signs that they are beginning to emerge from the earth, or burst from seemingly dead twigs. It makes my heart sing when I spot new growth.

grace2Of course there are always the hellebores, generous and voluptuous as they parade in the shade.

grace3Some tilt their heads to any flash of sun they can, while others, more shy, make you bow down to greet them.

grace5A little later, the wonderfully graceful Acers arrive at the ball, stylishly clothed in tropical pink and lime green, effortlessly attracting attention.

grace4Tulips are so cheerful and bold, this one looks excited, like it’s waving it’s arms to the world, shouting ‘look at me, look at me, I’m doing my spring dance!’

grace1Anyone who knows me would guess that this last pic, of the first flower of the year isng flower my favourite. Faithfully, every January the snowdrops reappear like little virgins in tutus, surely the most graceful of all!

Are you posting something graceful this week?

 

 

September: Flower Portrait

Jude asks for a single picture of either a favourite flower or an unusual one for September’s challenge. As I failed miserably to find an entry last month, I was determined to make it this time. So yesterday, I had a flying visit to Killerton to see what was on offer in their late summer border.
I’ve never been a particular fan of Canna Lily’s, but at this time of year they make a bright, bold statement in the border. The delicate petals of this one, Canna Indica I believe, attracted my attention.

You can join Jude’s challenge here, and you have until the end of September to showcase a single flower.

I’ve waited patiently

For these tiny house leek flowers to open. Each flower is just two centimetres across from petal to petal, and the detail is a masterpiece of nature.hl2

 

hl1

 

hl3Taken this morning before the sun was too bright, I think they were worth waiting for. You can click for a bigger view.

If you like photographing details, Jen H would like to see, over at the Daily Post.

The Beginning and End of a Garden Day

Last Sunday my friend picked me up to take me for a birthday trip. It was a very grey day, and the direction we took meant that the forecast rain was inevitable. It was quite odd to be in the passenger seat, Sue isn’t an enthusiastic driver so I’m usually behind the wheel even in her car. This is the road across Dartmoor.

Dartmoor roadIt doesn’t look promising does it?

Our actual destination doesn’t have any café facilities, and it was already 11.45 so we stopped off at Buckland, for coffee and halfsies on a piece of Bakewell tart.

beamsThe restaurant at Buckland has the most interesting old beams.

bucklandNational trust plant centres are always tempting but I knew there would be more interesting choices later on.

Now just play nicely together for a little while, because I’m not taking you where I went just yet, there are too many photos and I have to try to choose some okay ones from the endless blurred rainy day ones.

Three hours have passed and we’re back at Buckland, too late for a hot lunch or sandwich, but starving, thank goodness for a cheese and onion pasty! Then it’s outside for a stroll. It’s still grey but here are some cheerful stars.

dah1and a pretty garden wall and fence.

over the fence

with a very formal Elizabethan garden.

gardenThe last time I visited Buckland Abbey it was April and there wasn’t much to see in the garden at all. This time I mainly saw purple, pink and magenta.

Even around the corner in the border to the side of the Abbey.

border

Thank you Buckland for providing the contrast in the middle of my day!