The world is a blooming, buzzing place these days. I haven't managed to capture a photo of the hordes of tiny bees hovering around my ninebark bush, but I was more successful with this visitor to an unknown wildflower along the bike path this morning,
I have no idea what these wildflowers are either or why they produce bubbles. They have a little white flower, but I wouldn't have noticed those mysterious bubbles, or the balloon-like base and the way it caught the morning light, if I hadn't been ready to slow down and see what there was to see with a closer look. It's so easy to go walking past the many tiny marvels that are out there.
And from our neighbor's tree, here's one I do know -- and I can make a pretty good guess why it was named a tulip tree. I'm not sure how many years I lived next door to this tree without noticing its crazy spring blooms, though.
In honor of friends currently hiking on one of the Irish walking trails, here are some of the green patterns to be found around here these days.
Over the years, our front entrance has developed from a plain, straight walk to a small entry garden, which in the summer provides us with a bit of screening from a busy College Avenue. It's full of hosta, columbine, vinca and clematis at the moment, looking lush and green, with highlights of pale purple and gold-green.
For years, I've been wanting a trellis by the front door, to screen off the water meter and some other mechanical elements. This past week, Penny Yarman put together a trellis for me, based on a rough sketch I gave her, adapting the pattern of the trellis that sits in the corner by our living room windows. That one has a clematis vine that is just starting to bloom. I'll probably plant something similar for the new trellis. A definite spark of light this week, as are these views of flowers from that front garden.
The cygnets have hatched. A few evenings ago we saw them on the millrace, Mama sailing sedately in the lead, seven cygnets paddling hard to keep up, and Papa keeping a careful eye on them all from a rear position.
We walked along the bike path, following them till they settled back in the nest, Mama apparently covering them all with her protective wing. And a final image, from the next evening, of a different sort of flock sailing across the rays of the setting sun.
My miniature iris are in full bloom. When we moved back to Goshen, twenty-five years ago, we house-sat for Gladys Beyler for a few months, while we looked for a house to buy. Gladys had magnificent herb and flower beds, and she passed along the starts to many perennials when we finally had a house. I've got several different iris from her. This week these yellow iris caught my attention. I don't remember noticing that pale purple center before.
These capture the varied weather we've been having -- rain showers, gray skies, more rain, dancing in the wind, and full sunshine. The sun had them shimmering with gold dust.
Wednesday morning, that is, when the sun was out (this morning brought welcome rain). The redbud are at a prime pink blossom stage, with their heart-shaped leaves just beginning to open at the tips of the branches. New leaves filtering sunlight provide glimpses of lacy green on the shore and reflected in the water.
And I got to enjoy an encounter with a brood of ducklings. They hovered at the edge of the millrace briefly, perhaps hoping for a handout. Then the mother sailed away, and the ducklings turned on their turbo-jets to catch up with her.
I took the scenic route home, to check the fringe of redbud on the edge of Witmer Woods -- beautiful both close up and at a distance.
With longer days and warmer weather, John and I are once again able to take after-supper walks. On Tuesday evening we headed over to the millrace, which was both peaceful and bustling -- the water was still and full of reflections, while the bike-path was busy with walkers, runners and bikers. And there was plenty of action down by the water as well . . .boys and geese, geese and swans, muskrat and greens.....
I discovered a secret conclave of preachers out in the woods yesterday -- a crowd of jack-in-the-pulpits. The names seems to fit best with an ornate pulpit style, complete with canopy, and a tripartite leaf to go with it. Dark red trillium continues the trinitarian theme, but wild ginger goes with a heart shape.
And the feathers below, each about an inch or two long, came floating down out of a clear blue sky this afternoon, along with twenty or so others, gently wafting on the breeze. I couldn't spot a source.
My approach to contemplative photography --
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"