Weekend Wandering

Some pictures from Long Branch Environmental Education Center. This place was pretty neat.

Some pictures from a short walk in Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest, an old growth forest about 2 hours west of Asheville, NC. Some of the tulip poplars there are over 400 years old.

We found a recently hatched luna moth. 💚

Some cute Kentuckian.

Garden Critters and Blooms

Flying Cloud Farm is only 6 miles from my apartment. They have community UPick flower fields, so I find myself there with my macro lens pretty often.

Here are some shots of my garden from earlier in the week. The tomatoes in the front bed are about two feet taller than I am right now and I think collectively they threaten to bring down the stakes. Next year I’ll opt for metal instead of wood.

My first dahlia bloomed! (!!!!!!!!)

Ammi and zinnias.

Not pictured below: the squash and the cucumbers that won’t stop growing.

Pictured below: very tasty pickles.

Garden critters – including a monarch caterpillar! There are at least 5 of them nestled in the milkweed and we’re all really excited about watching them pupate.

January, so far.

You guessed it. Another moody, gloomy, winter botanicals post. I can’t get enough of these dreamy vintages lenses. I could walk around anywhere all day and not get enough of the swirly bokeh. Anyway, spring can’t come soon enough, and I’m thrilled that we’ll see subtle signs of her in the coming months.

One fun thing about January so far: I’ve been really into tarot cards. On the advice of a very experienced tarot reader, I purchased a really lovely deck. I’m absolutely hooked! There has been a really neat theme in the cards I’ve pulled so far.

Moody tones of green. We found a mantis egg sack nestled on a horsetail stem. I sure do love vascular plants and I’ve made a mental note to return to this spot with the macro lens in the next few weeks to try to find hatched babies

Excited to finally have some time to play with the film camera. More to come on this later as I slowly begin collecting what I’ll need for home development.

Sweet moments with this wild girl.

A former classmate asked me to photograph her in her wedding gown, so we had some fun one (very bright) day. Hoping to get more practice with portraits in the coming months! It’s definitely trickier than insects or flowers. Especially the editing process.

January has been lovely so far. It will conclude with my 31st birthday and hopefully some warmer weather. I’m really hoping to see signs of spring early this year.

Here are some recent pics of Mulato and some cozy morning shadows for good measure.

Garden Project

Early in the spring I started a container garden outside my front door.

Here are early photos from the first week of May:

Here are photos from last week, after a few days of rain. I have a few pot tomatoes (not sure these will be successful), marigolds, flossflower, mint, oregano, lemon balm, cleome, nicotiana, straw flower, sweet william, catnip, chamomile, and anise hyssop.

From seed, I planted larkspur, alyssum, and poppies. I don’t know if the poppies will actually bloom because I planted them a bit late. They’ve sprouted and we’ll see what happens.

In addition to the container garden, I have a raised bed that I’ll fill with compost/soil this coming weekend. It’s a collaboration project with my sweet neighbor, and between the two of us, we’re wayyyyyyy excited about it.

We plan on using cattle panel to make tomato cages, as well as trellises for the cukes, squashes, melons, etc.

I have a few different tomatoes growing outside my back porch (mostly bush tomatoes) because you can never have enough tomatoes and I want to live on gazpacho this summer. I also planted 5 or 6 different flowers in that bed a few days ago. Mostly cottage garden varieties. Hopefully they make it! I planted 13 different dahlia tubers 2 weeks ago, and I’m really anxious to see if they make it. They *should* break through the soil in the next week or two.

If you’ve read this far and have any tips for a beginner gardener, please pass them along. : )

Early morning walk in the dew

Here are some photos from a really nice morning a few weeks ago. I woke up early and saw that my corner of the world was drenched in sunlight and early morning dew. On my way to a trail I love to hike I had to pull over multiple times because Western North Carolina just does something to you at 8AM. I found spider webs scattered along fence posts, sweet grazing sheep, and I had my first trillium sighting of the year.

Laurens, South Carolina

Upstate South Carolina is full of old textile towns and I think they’re so fun to explore. Even though it’s much hotter down there, I could spend a while wandering around those old towns. Unfortunately, my daughter decided we weren’t safe at this old cotton mill. After walking around for only a few minutes happily finding “ancient parts” (LoZ fans here), she was pretty convinced that cannibals were going to crawl out of the depths to feast on our flesh. We ended up being just fine, though.