Sunday, May 19, 2013
Blueberries on the Hoof
Yesterday we went to Buelton to pick Blueberries at a great little spot, Santa Barbara Blueberries. They have a wide variety of bushes so you can find your favorite ones. It's just the beginning of their season and they are only open limited hours, so be sure to check out their Facebook page for updates.
Thursday, April 4, 2013
This is a shot from our beautiful Coronado Butterfly Preserve in Goleta. This year the butterfly population seemed a bit smaller than years past, but they are still an absoultely amazing sight.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Alice Keck Park Evening Lamp Post
Alice Keck Park Memorial Gardens is beautiful any time, but at twilight it becomes almost magical. This was from a nice evening walk a while back. Looking at this image I can almost hear the sounds of the wildlife settling down for the evening. The ducks seem to like to stretch the evening out as long as possible in the park. Trolling the lake for a last snack before bed time.
Sunday, April 22, 2012
Threadleaf Japanese Maple
This beautiful little plant is a Japanese Threadleaf Maple tree or [Acer palmatum var. dissectum]. We found it while wandering the aisles of a great nursery in Carmel Valley. These trees apparently turn an amazing golden color in the autumn. Perhaps someday soon we'll have space for this beauty. Right now our tiny back yard is bulging at the seams from plants so we have tried to control ourselves when we visit the nurseries. Of course they are supposed to make great bonsai trees... hmmm. (That has to be the last thing a plant wants to hear when someone is thinking about buying it)
Monday, March 19, 2012
Santa Ynez Grapes on the Vine
Grapes in the Santa Ynez valley. Ok it feels like summer, Spring is just starting, so here is a picture from last Fall. Just because I really like it and I realized I never published it. This is in a nice little vineyard in the Santa Ynez Valley.There was a space through the vines that I was able to frame the beautiful valley in the background. The red flowers in the lower right are roses that are planted at the ends of the rows of grapes.
Monday, December 27, 2010
Tendril in the Rain
The excessive ran we've had in California for the last week and a half has caused no end of problems. (Yeah, I know, if you're in the north east under three feet of snow, you probably can't feel much pity.) On the plus side the rain gives many interesting options for beautiful photos.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Santa Ynez Valley Grapes
I've been working on trying to get an image that captures the feel of the Santa Ynez Valley. Of course, vineyards are a big part of that area of California these days. Especially after a rather popular movie about the area a few years ago. But wine is not the only thing they are known for. This weekend Solvang is having their Danish Days festival. If you've never eaten an Aebleskiver that alone could be worth the trip. Of course, I prefer just making my own and avoiding the crowds. Then again, maybe I'll brave the sand castle festival in Santa Barbara this weekend. Could be a busy weekend!
Thursday, December 25, 2008
This is a beautiful little shopping center in Carmel, called The Barnyard. After dinner at our favorite restaurant in Carmel we spent the evening wandering around and checking out Christmas lights. On the right is a great place called Succulent Gardens. If you can't tell from the Epi photos on the site, a place like that is a real magnet for me. In fact a few of our Epis even came from there. On the left is a great little candy shop. (Try the grasshopper bark and the caramel cashew turtles if you stop there!)
I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Hummer in the Mallow
This guy is sitting on a branch in our Sea Tree Mallow. He is waiting for me to fill up the hummingbird feeder. Don't you just hate it when your favorite restaurant makes you wait. It's so hard to get good service. It's a good thing our most popular hummingbird appetizers are blooming right now.
Friday, August 29, 2008
When I was taking this photo last week I was thinking of the last time I took pictures of this doorway. I was really surprised to find out it was more than three years ago. I need to get out more often!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Solar Pathway Lantern
One of the things we learned from the recent fire
is how truly dark it can be outside when the power goes
off. My dad who was far ahead of his time
taught me the virtues of solar energy when he
was able to power our whole house with solar panels twenty years ago.
Unfortunately there are less options for renters although we keep trying.
When we tried these small solar path lights a few years
ago they did not last very long. But these days they
have small LEDs in them so they last all night this time
of year. So we replaced all of our landscape lighting
with these and some nice spotlights on the plants.
Next time the power goes out we'll at least be able to
get around without falling over all our plants.
I'm sure it's wonderful for the environment too, but personally I'm not convinced that buying a bunch of stuff just to save energy is a terribly responsible thing to do unless the things you are replacing have outlived their usefulness and need to be replaced anyway. I'd rater telecommute and keep my old jeep that I drive about 10 miles a month, than buy an overpriced hybrid that had to be manufactured somewhere. Personally I think a large part of the current save-the-world movement is an excuse to make you feel good about buying things... eco-consumerism! Save the world with your credit card!
Friday, August 22, 2008
As if you couldn't tell already, I'm still going through the photos from our recent trip to Carmel. This was actually across the street from yesterday's photo of the day. They like vines there. And I can't blame them, it's a beautiful place.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
The clouds in the photo are actually not much further away
than the roof of the building. In fact if you look closely
you can see that the peak of the roof is actually in the haze.
The afternoon fog in Carmel was beautiful and swirling, almost like a time
lapse video of clouds. We spent the last few days there
and they were all cool and misty, which is a nice change
from the heat at home lately.
Carmel is one of the best places I know for an afternoon walk. Of course, you should probably wear your hiking shoes since the main street gets a bit steep at places.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Carmel Valley Hummer
Today we took a nice trip to a nursery in Carmel Valley. It's one of my favorite places to chase humming birds. There are always a bunch of them but there is one in particular that seems to like to play. He keeps buzzing me and then sitting and waiting for me to get almost close enough for the shot I want before taking off again. I'm sure he's having as much fun with me as I am with him. Fortunately, he usually takes pity on the big lumbering beast with the 300 millimeter nose and lets me get a few nice shots.
Friday, November 23, 2007
Backlit Grape Leaf
One nice thing about living in Southern California is the fact that you can take pictures like this even this time of year. On the other hand, we were walking The Hound yesterday when we passed a tree with beautiful fall colored leaves. Makes me think about taking a trip somewhere to see some real fall colors!
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Sometimes its nice to take a closer look
at something beautiful. This is a gateway
into the Santa Barbara Courthouse. The
building as a whole is amazing, but as
I am so fond of pointing out I really like
the details. There is some incredible
craftsmanship there that I don't think
you would find very easily today. Perhaps
the only thing that will make me stop
sounding like my grandfather now (WHYYYY, IN MY DAY... !) is
to point out that it was probably pretty
rare to EVER find this kind of creativity!
(Unless of course, it was actually one of my perfectionist German grandfathers doing it! :-D At least I come by it honestly!)
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Hummer in the Bush
It's taken a while but we have built up some nice traffic to our hummingbird feeders in the back yard. Originally I thought our umbrella was blocking their view of potential threats and scaring them away. When we put it down for a while they came closer and started eating at our feeder that is hung the highest. Now that they are more comfortable, the umbrella is back up and they seem to like the seclusion of it. We have two lower feeders that are almost under the umbrella and they are emptied the fastest. I even got scolded today when the lower feeders were empty!
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
This Hibiscus was in the garden of a mission by San Diego. It was an overcast day which made for some nice soft light. I particularly liked this flower since most of the others were tightly closed or all the way open.
Friday, May 18, 2007
Liquidamber Bonsai Tree
This is a close up of one of our latest plants. It is a small cascading bonsai tree. Unfortunately the wires were a little tight, so I had to loosen them but not before I got a few cool shots!
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Shadows of Paradise
O.K. if you got here from the "Banana Photos" page
I am not going nuts or getting sloppy in my photo categorization. (well, at least not
the second one anyway.) The Bird of Paradise is actually a member of the
Banana [Musaceae] family. Strange but true!
But wait, it gets even stranger! Like bananas, Bird of Paradise are botanically considered herbs since they do not produce any woody stems. (That's right, even the biggest 25 foot banana tree is not really a tree at all.)
Well that is the botany lesson for the day. The photo is pretty nice too, if I do say so myself.
Friday, November 17, 2006
Candle Leaf Banana
We were wandering through a nice garden store last weekend when I saw this banana plant. The leaf growing out of the center really caught my attention. It looks just like a candle to me. The opening on the top is shaped just like the flame. The large open leaf made a great background.
Saturday, October 7, 2006
Banana in the Rain
A few weeks ago we found two beautiful banana plants at the hardware store that were looking for a good home. They live right out front now. The other day it started to rain just as I was leaving the house and when I saw how the drops of water collected on the leaf I had to run back in and get my camera.