waiting for the right piece
i taught a STILL workshop at my house recently. i had placed a few props on the table that i could use to demonstrate my technique. the bits and pieces have remained on my table for the past two weeks–not really catching my attention. yesterday, my mom’s neighbor, brought me a handful of mallard feathers she had found on her morning walk. i placed the feathers with the other bits crowding my workspace, and suddenly the half-noticed pile of debris felt different. more interesting. more complete. so i made of photo.
let’s try this again
i keep trying. and i will keep trying. and one of these days i will look through the viewfinder, and think to myself “yes! that’s it. that is the essence of bleeding heart.” i will keep trying until i get it.
bleeding heart flower detail
Did you do your shots in situ with whiteboard behind? Or cut them and bring inside? This one has a softness, a gentleness, that I associate with with bleeding heart. Indeed a tough subject! More coming?reply
a pretty girl with attitude
i feel like we got off on the wrong foot with these bleeding hearts. how can a plant with such striking flowers, be so darn difficult to photograph? i took 16 different shots of these branches. i am not exaggerating. 16! and not one of them knocked my socks off. one of the many “problems” with bleeding hearts, is that those transparent white tips at the base of each heart are nearly impossible to photograph on a white background. also the flowers to foliage ratio is off. and the long arching racemes of hanging pendent flowers are flimsy and unruly. ha! i sound as spoiled and petulant as i am accusing the bleeding heart of being. perhaps our chemistry was just off. that happens sometimes.
bleeding heart flowers (Lamprocapnos spectabilis)
MJ, this looks like a bleeding heart at a rave, or maybe in a tornado. Can we see some of the other shots?reply
let’s take a peek
i cut a little window out of my jack-in-the-pulpit, so we could see the hidden flowers inside. here’s a little anatomy and vocabulary lesson on this unusual plant:
The small, inconspicuous flowers of Jack-in-the-pulpit are borne on a fleshy, spike-like inflorescence called a spadix (“Jack”), which is enclosed (or nearly enclosed) by a large, sometimes colorful bract called a spathe (“pulpit”). The flowers are clustered around the base of the spadix inside the spathe. A sterile spadix appendix protrudes from the mouth of the spathe tube. The appendix is covered by the leafy tip of the spathe, referred to as the spathe hood. The lip along the mouth of the spathe tube, used as a landing platform for winged insects, is called the spathe flange.
jack in the pulpit detail
Fascinating! Nature seems so simple, yet so complexreply
the passing of the baton
i just learned that jack-in-the-pulpits are in the same sub-family as calla lilies. i don’t know how i didn’t notice the family resemblance before now. jack in the pulpits are shade-tolerant woodland plants, which also includes star flower, blue bead lily, baneberry, lily of the valley, and lady slippers. with the trees now fully leafed out, these late-comers mark the end of the woodland flowers. the woodland plants have done their job well, providing the pollinators with an important early source of pollen and nectar. soon the baton gets passed to the open field and roadside flowers who will color our world for the next four months and will so lavishly provide pollen (protein) and nectar (carbohydrates) that the bees can stash enough away to survive even our northern winters. nothing in nature is accidental.
jack in the pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum)