Category Archives: Photography

I got It – Croagh Patrick at Sunset


I’ve been trying to get this photo for weeks. 

I’ve been taking the big camera to work with me, and bringing it inside instead of leaving it in the car because I didn’t want condensation issues. The two days that the view was similar (but better!) than this, I had forgotten to bring the damn camera to work with me. Once I drove all the way home for it. Of course, when I got back to the perfect place, I was not only too late but the battery was stone cold dead! Auugh! And of course, every day the sunset came earlier and earlier, while I still had to work until the same late hour… So you know now that this took some effort, and wasn’t just luck!

The pointy one is Croagh Patrick, County Mayo’s most famous mountain. An extinct volcano, it has been revered by the Irish for several thousand years, and is now a Catholic pilgrimage site.

From many angles the mountain also named “The Reek” doesn’t look so perfectly pyrimidical. I’ve posted a picture from this same place along the road before – back in March 2012 –  I did the research then and said that as the crow flies, I am taking this picture from about 50 KM or 30 miles away. I think the sunset magnifies the mountain somehow. It isn’t huge – 764 metres or 2,507 feet – so to be seen so clearly from so far away is a rarity. Well, I’ve only gotten it twice in over three years!

*Need I remind everyone that copyright belongs to the blog owner and this picture is not for reuse without permission? I do have it in RAW format if someone wishes to purchase it.

Gerbera Update!


They have been in bloom for weeks now, but holy shit it is hard to take a good photo of them!

Only three have bloomed – one is still thinking about it, and two died. Dammit. I won’t leave them outside ever again!

The youngest, and smallest, of the brood. 

The second one to open. Gorgeous!

This is my favourite. I want so much for you to see how the underside of the petals are a different colour. Can you? It’s impossible, I think, to capture what we see.

Sometimes a picture isn’t enough -these flowers have made me realise that not everything can be expressed or shared to the full extent of reality.

Grow these – buy these – whatever you need to do, but please try to get this flower into your life. Mine are hidden away (from cats) on the windowsill of our toilet! Have to say every time we visit the room, we both talk about the daisies.

Tigridia Post. I Have To, The Photos Are Piling Up.


I think I’ll do all pink ones.

I’m beginning to think that wasps are the main pollinators of my tigridia – unless it is just the wind doing the job?

Did you notice? Most are pink and white, but some are pink and yellow!

I had a hard time deciding if this was red or pink… So much for the stereotype that women know all the colours. I think it’s more red, now – comparing to the other pictures. Oh well! 

 A bit battered.
 Not quite open yet, but I had to go to work. Hence the very abused steel-toe Caterpillar Boots in frame.


Plants That Are Not Tigridia


They are feeling left out. 

Remember the new lilies I planted back in April? It was a bit late, I know, but they are finally up.

The first ones to awaken are very small.

From the Aldi ‘Roselily Mix’ – and so far only the pink and white ones of the mix have come out to say hello.

And just the two. Oh well. 

These are some of the Aldi ‘Pixels Mix’ I’ve bought in the past – but this is a very unexpected colour! It wasn’t on the package at all. The above is them as youngin’s…

…and this is them, a little more awake. The blooms last a good long time, too, yay! Very good autumn colours, I think.

Not so sure they go well with the big pink and cream ones up above?

But aren’t they fantastic? Hubby and I are both in love with this one, another Aldi prize, ‘Lollipop.’

The packaging said they were meant to be short, only 14-16cm (5.5 – 6.3in tall) – ha! One is that short. The other is a good 2.5 feet or 76cm tall! As big as the Pixels are meant to get – you can see that the short one is taller than the tall one, in the first photos. Go figure. I expect I have mutants.

The nasturtium (from seed last year, but I collected the seeds for this batch) has been moved to along the wall (about a metre high) and it seems to love growing up into the ivy. 

The not-sweet pea lives right behind where I’ve planted the nasturtium, and comes back every year. It is MASSIVE. Not-sweet because it has no scent, bummer eh? This is from seeds I collected in Akron, Ohio, in a year that didn’t start with a 2. Considering I moved here in 2005, it is amazing it was still viable.

 Gorgeous – whatever it is. I’ve forgotten. It scents (or stinks) up my front doorstep marvellously. It is not a Stargazer lily but close.

Roses are still going strong. I thought this was an odd-looking cluster. Will be interesting when all the buds open! Ignore the damned black-spot: I can’t get rid of it.

 And the California poppies are still going like gangbusters, too. 

Tigridia AGAIN


I have soooo many pictures now. It’s crazy. Scores of them, each of a bloom that lasted just 8 hours or so. There are literally too many to post.

What should I do? I could do an all-pink post, or all-yellow, or all-red; or the funky striped hybrid I seem to have created accidentally. I can’t pick the ‘best of’ as every one is perfect and amazing.

Okay. I have two “cheating” pictures, where there is more than one flower in the shot. I’ll start with those.


A rare, dry morning!

 Ooo, one with my hand in frame, to give you an idea of size. I don’t have small hands, either!   

 Spot the wasp?

My favourite picture so far of several together. Had it as my FB cover photo until about an hour ago.

Oh, and did I say I had two ‘cheating’ pictures? Turns out it was 13. Whoopsie!

Hope you liked them – and I am willing to post seed to you, if you want to give them a try. First year they won’t bloom, but the next? You get this madness!


I’m Way Behind, But So Are My Flowers


I just can’t seem to post as much as I’d like to. After taking the first week of August off work, I also let my blog-reading slide. Sorry! I’m all caught up now with that, but I have so damn many pictures I wanted to share. I guess I’ll get to it!

New lilies! 

The colour looks really weird here, but it hasn’t been putzed around with, I promise.

Not looking fab – the rain took out most of the petals the first day these opened. Bah.

That’s a bit better! All of the above are ALDI “pixels mix” bought this year as bare bulbs, so I will forgive them for looking scraggly. I like the top one best. You can tell that this yellow one is way taller than the orange one, too.

 I have roses like crazy. I’m glad – the white ones smell fantastic and scent the entire back garden on still days.

The new rudbeckia (black eyed Susan) ‘chocolate orange’ from seed this year. Not as advertised – but clearly I have it in a too-small pot as you can’t even see the pot in this picture. Replanted today. Poor thing.   

I can’t remember what this is! Grown from seed last year, and again this year – and it also self-seeded in random places. Help?

The crocrosmia dug out of wasteland a few years back – looking great!

Hosta flowers – the white, closed

 The white, open

The purple, from the non-variegated leaf hosta. My neighbour told me she didn’t grow Hostas because they don’t bloom… Again I must have the magic touch.

I wish they didn’t look so bad when they wilt, though. Quite ugly, like rotting used tissues.

Couldn’t end without some tigridia. This is a side view – don’t think I’ve taken this angle before.


I’ve caught up to August 15 now! Woot.

I Left Ireland – for the Giant’s Causeway


My luvvies, I got to have an adventure two weeks ago! iDJ and I took the first week of August off, just because we had unused holiday time. There was also a birthday in that week, but that is of no consequence.

What is of consequence is that he asked me on Sunday if I wanted to go see the Giant’s Causeway. Well, yah! I’ve been in Ireland over 10 years and not seen it yet. He’s been here his whole life and not seen it yet!

After many debates and checking of every weather-app we have, we settled on a day that was ‘meant to be decent up North’, which turned out to be that very next Tuesday. Two whole days to prepare to go to another country. Of course, we can drive there, and it “only” took four hours one way.

So: through counties Mayo, and Sligo, and Letrim. Through Donegal and Derry and into Antrim – where you can actually see Scotland on a clear day (it wasn’t a clear day). A long drive on rough roads, and bad weather for most of it. The usual, then!

We have a Garmin sat-nav. Of course, we rarely trust it. So we followed the road signs and ended up taking the coastal route, which was prettier anyway. We found an odd place that we really wanted to explore, but were too pressed for time: Mussenden Temple and Downhill Demense. Maybe next time.

 These two photos are stolen from Himself as my only picture was rubbish. Clearly they were making hay while the sun shone.

We continued on to Dunluce Castle. While it is quite large, we didn’t fancy paying the entrance fee so took pictures from outside the castle.

 It was hard to avoid getting other tourists in the shot – and I also truly hated the wire fencing at the base of the castle that was keeping the erosion down. Shame they couldn’t find a more natural way to contain falling rock.

Finally, we made it to the Causeway. About 5 hours after we left home! We were already tired. Getting old sucks. 

This is the first picture I took – you have a good downhill walk to get to this part, and the causeway hasn’t even started yet at that wee hill. Still, we were tempted to climb it, like these people did.

Very eroded rocks. But I still feel and see the lava that created them.    
I found a tidal pool! Yay! It helped because there were SO DAMN MANY PEOPLE around. 


I went right to the edge. I was feeling a bit claustrophobic with the crowds, so I did my best to escape them. Hubby went another direction, and I did worry I’d lost him – several times.

It was very hard to get pictures without strangers in the frame. People had come from all over our planet to see this natural wonder. This is the widest people-free shot that I managed to take – and only because I’d walked way out toward the ocean. Families were much less likely to let their kids near the water, and no one wanted a selfie. It pays to be anti-social sometimes!

 Beautiful and amazing at once.


The basalt columns are all on an angle. Had to get the horizon in this shot to prove it! 

 I love rocks.

More rock detail. Each one of these is just about the right size for a human adult’s foot. Made climbing up and down quite easy – like a huge but wonky staircase.   
 We didn’t have time to walk to this part. You will have to click and zoom in to see how tiny the humans are compared to these massive inland columns. What you have to imagine is that the entirety of the land you see here is made up of the volcanic columns I was stumbling around on, on shore.

I spent a lot of time looking down. Sometimes I looked up.

 I know these aren’t the most symmetrical of Causeway rocks. I love them regardless. I’ve never been to the New Mexico badlands – but somehow I expect to see the same sort of rocks there.

Another part we didn’t have time to explore. Damn. Aparently there is a rope-bridge and I was curious to see if I’d finally defeated my fear of heights or not.

All in all – go see it. Next time I will drive up, spend the night close by, and have plenty of time to explore the next day. It is on par with any natural wonder you might be close to. But give yourselves a lot of time to wander and explore, and bring some water with you as there is a lot of walking uphill! 

They’re Baaaacck!


My first tigridia of 2015! Just the one so far.

Interesting to see that the first bloomer is one of my grown-from seed last year. They didn’t bloom last year, they were too young still. These are in pretty terrible recycled buckets and out the back of the house, where the sun probably lasts a bit longer. All my older plants are in proper ceramic pots and out front – and the house faces mostly west. Hmm.

I went back in time (did you hear the “woosh?”) and found that last year, my first post about tigridia was on July 26, 2013 – and last year I started bombarding you with pics on July 17! Very much proves how our wet and dark and windy ‘summer’ has delayed plant growth.

Well, they are here finally. And I’ll enjoy every bloom for the single day I get to see it!