Hothouse Orchids- Australian National Botanic Gardens

These Orchids are a part of the Gardens research collection, not usually on display but were available to be viewed until the 6th of October.

The scent as you entered the hothouse was overwhelming. I noticed not many people who came in after me stayed longer than I did. It was mostly quick in and out visits.

The new lens that I mentioned in my previous post has arrived ( yesterday ) and already blown my mind! I'm having fun getting to know it and its capabilities and I'm looking forward to next week when the kids go back to school so I can venture out beyond my yard and put it through its paces at my own leisurely pace.

Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve

September 2015

We headed off to our favourite holiday haunt again this week and took the Mr along as well. We decided to do the Sanctuary wetlands walk and are so happy we did, as we were rewarded with Platypus action viewed from a board walk which was just amazing! We also saw a pair of black swans in the reeds and we suspect they may have been building a nest.  The photo below is one of the platypuses/platypi/platapodes surfacing. (There is a grammar lesson in there, when considering what to call multiple platypus. Google each term for fun )  We watched this one for well over 10 minutes. It was a gorgeous day and we all had a great time.

 These photos were my faves from amongst what I took. I'm much more selective now in what I share as I become more aware and super self critical of my images in terms of exposure and composition. Most of what I took yesterday looked overexposed to me, I really struggle to accurately capture nature when in full sunlight. I adjusted the shadows slightly in some of these, my only other edits were crop and tilt adjust for straighter shore lines. The first and last images in this post are free of any exposure or colour editing.


I have been to the orchid hot house at the Botanic gardens this week too, I'll try and share that soon. I'm excited about a new lens I bought that is en-route right now, its a Canon 70-200mm f4 so I hope to be sharing some pretty bird life with you soon.

Meet Mama Magpie

This Mama comes down to chat and forage and she knows me now, like our Possum. They are Natives free to come and go as they please but ours just the same. Today I was in the right place at the right time. I'd been photographing flowers and I could hear her signing over the fence as she fossicked about, but once the rain started she decided to ask for a convenience meal and came to me.

She started to eat from my hand when she started to bring her youngster down. She didn't often share with it and didn't let it take too much from me, but she would let it take some. I believe she was perhaps demonstrating that I was a trustworthy human. Her youngster occasionally comes on its own now and chortles to let me know its waiting. She will boldly come into the house to let me know she's here if I'm not visible in the yard. This is dangerous as Bella is very excited by the birds and does not understand why they don't want to play.

These are not posted sequentially and while they are not all crystal clear images I'm so pleased with the play on focus and the way some convey movement. I had switched to single point focus just yesterday after watching a you tube vid going through what each of my camera menu functions does. It made me more aware of a couple of  factory settings that are in place for people who don't use their Cameras Manual functionality.

Magpies are such beautiful intelligent Birds. I hope you enjoyed meeting this girl.

Secrets in my Garden.

At a passing glance you would not know that the wings of insects cast shadows; New Foliage of roses is sharp; Wild Violets have fur and Flowers are not always apparent.

This is how I observe things. Its the little things that capture my attention, its the detail that draws me in. What appears to be ordinary can actually reveal itself as extraordinary if you just linger a little longer.

Going my Way?

Spring has me out in the garden working with Gusto. Our once beautiful garden has been left seriously untended by us over the last 4 years and is over run with grass and weeds in the beds. This has bothered me slightly but really ... in the grand scheme of things, flowers still bloom and grow and I see beauty in those fighters that bloom dutifully despite the hardships they fight and they make it easy to overlook the ugly and unintended.

I recently went browsing my garden blog trying to identify something but sadly in all my pretty pictures I never detailed location of lovelies for my own reference, it was all just a record of my wonder and awe. Then I saw this picture ... Oh! My! Gosh! I thought "Is that really in my garden?" 
The bearded Iris have not bloomed so well these last few years with only a flower here and there and nothing of the stunning show we had that first year, After seeing this picture I set off reading about why my iris were not blooming and went on a mission to free the iris corms from their grassy prisons, during this process I found this marker by two little corms.

Barely legible - certainly in this image it would appear to be blank. But I could make out a couple of letters, a 'G' at the beginning of the first word, perhaps 'my' or 'ny' at the end of that line and a second line that started with 'Wa' I keep looking at it day after day - in day light,  interior light; with glasses on, glasses off. Tilting it this way and that, trying to spot something new, I also tried enhanced photo techniques, but still no clues as to what this might say.

Yesterday had new LED lighting installed by ACTEW energy efficiency team who replaced our halogen down lights for free! I saw the marker on the desk and though it was worth checking it, under the new light. I started to write down possibilities for the fragments of new letters that were revealed, it was a word puzzle. This letter could be an 'A' or an 'O' ... etc

 Then in the evening as I looked at my scribble I saw a possibility for a three word title. I wrote it down and typed into Google search preceded by the word Iris.
Would you look at that! the very iris that sent me off on my whole course of investigation was the one that revealed its self to me! I still have lots of iris to free but am happy with how many I have already released to potentially flower this year.

Can I use Hibernation as an excuse?