'scene' along the way, adventure, dragonflies, flowers, gardens, life, natural wonders, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Innisfree Gardens…

Down the most innocuous looking one lane dirt road, looking as if you’ve gotten onto a service road rather than the road into a garden destination, you will find Innisfree Gardens.  If not for the 15 mph signs every so often I’d have tried to find a spot to turn around.  I thought to myself that the senior price was only $5 and I shouldn’t have expected much.  But then you are finally in the parking area with lots of other people.  Some are pulling coolers out of their cars, clearly planning to spend some time rather than just take some pictures.  This sign greets you, and explains the place better than I ever could.6_08_19sign

And yes, you roam the paths and on the grass, and at every turn there are lovely little scenes. 06-08-19gardenview16_08_19gardenview46_08_19gardenview56_08_19gardenview66_08_19gardenview706-08-19threechairs6_08_19gardenview96_08_19gardenview36_08_19gardenview86_08_19gardenview26_08_19chairs

And of course where there are flowers there are bees, and butterflies…6_08_19bee6_08_19butterfly26_08_19purpleflower

But this dragonfly provided the most fun moment.  I had been keeping pace with a family of several generations as they enjoyed the park.  One of their group was wearing a red ball cap and a dragonfly decided to perch on it, much to the delight of her family.  I had missed the moment but I told them that dragonflies always come back to the same spot, and I was going to add that I didn’t think that that would apply to the cap, except there he was again.  Both he and she were quite cooperative and I appreciated the chance to capture that moment.  I hope they have stuck with the blog for a couple of days because I told them I’d use the photo, but it has taken me since Saturday to do it.6_08_19dragonflyhat6_08_19dragonfly

The little woodpecker in the featured photo was quite a surprise.  I wasn’t fast enough to catch the exchange as one adult flew into the nest and the other flew out.  But I zoomed as much as I could and took a picture of the tree just in case, and I planned to explain that I could hear the babies in there chirping for food.  Because I did, but what I couldn’t see until I looked at the photos in the computer was that someone was keeping a watchful eye on things.  It was a small price to pay for such a lovely day.

a second look, dragonflies, Florida landmarks, Florida wildlife, flowers, gardens, nature, Nature Coast Botanical Gardens, perseverance, photography, weather

Not a creature was stirring…

… except for the lizards, which were everywhere at the Nature Coast Botanical Gardens yesterday.  Suddenly the rain had stopped and the sky was gorgeous, so off I went.  And thought I’d outsmarted myself because that quickly the sun was gone again.  But I’m glad I didn’t give up.  The lizards were scurrying everywhere, but my real destination was the butterfly garden where the zebras that I was chasing the other day were the only busy butterflies I saw…4=26-19flowerlizard4=26-19gazingball4=26-19zebraredflower4=26-19zebra34=26-19butterflygarden4=26-19zebra24=26-19zebra1And if I’d given up I would have missed this cooperative fella…4=26-19dragonfly24=26-19dragonfly1And then I found the Secret Garden.  I think it’s where the Easter Bunny goes for R&R after his big day…4=26-19secretgarden4=26-19tears4=26-19bunny4=26-19Child'sface4=26-19egretstatue4=26-19angelface4=26-19pinkflowers4=26-19purpleflower4=26-19whiteflower4=26-19sign

'scene' along the way, birds, bugs, dragonflies, Florida wildlife, fun, nature, perseverance, photography

Wall Springs Park…

I think that going to Wall Springs Park qualifies as a Photo groupie destination.  I’d heard of it through the club, and I knew I had told myself that I ought to go there one of these days.  But over the weekend I saw the turn off for the park while I was on my normal route to Clearwater.  Closer to home than I dreamed.  So it was only a matter of time until I headed there to see what I could see.  It was a lovely park, with a board walk path and multiple spots to stop for pictures.  As I stopped to take my first pictures of a Great Blue Heron I heard a little voice saying, “Mommy, I see a sting ray.”  And I laughed, thinking of course there wasn’t a sting ray, only there was. 4-23-19wallspringsgreatblue4-23-19wallspringsstingrayI found a Northern Parula having a tasty lunch…4-23-19wallspringsnorthernparulaAnd I took a few shots of some cute squirrels just because they are so cute, until they decide to raise a family in your attic…4-23-19wallspringsquirrel4-23-19wallspringsquirrel2

And flowers, bees, and my favorite, dragonflies!4-23-19wallsprings14-23-19wallspringsbee4-23-19wallspringsdragonfly

Such a pretty place to spend a morning…4-23-19wallspringspano4-23-19wallspringsreflection

bugs, butterflies, dragonflies, Florida wildlife, flowers, gardens, nature, on closer examination, photography, the big picture

Let me tell you ’bout…

…the birds and the bees, and the flowers and the trees…

So happy for friends, and for completely different reasons.  One has a brand new rescue puppy to love, and another is reuniting with his grandkids.  As well as happy for myself, with a day of different photo ops ahead of me.  It’s a good news kind of day!5-10dragonfly5-10gazebo5-10butterfly5-10traingarden25-10traingarden5-10bee35-10bee15-10snakeAnd a snake, which isn’t good news but is tolerable news when it is a black snake, so harmless, and running away from me.  Those were busy bees, buzzing away.  And I assume that those orange sacks are full of pollen.  I’ve been hearing about them but hadn’t seen that for myself before.  Guess they were having a good day too!

backyard visitors, birds, dragonflies, learning, nature, perseverance, photography, technology

Performing on cue…

Yesterday I had two photographer friends over to show them what I know about creating an HDR image in Lightroom.  I can get the photo to be an HDR, but it will be up to them to do the editing which will make it an outstanding photo.  I don’t claim to have that knowledge, but I could get them started at least.  Or they could rely on another program like EasyHDR as I like to do.  Shortcuts, I love a good shortcut.

But what was especially fun for me was that the cranes showed up on cue.  We had set the timing in hopes of them being able to see the Sandhill crane colts as they return to the nest.  And they did, along with all the usual suspects out there.  The Little Blue Heron, the Tri-color Heron, the Glossy Ibis, a fly over by a hawk and several Swallow-tail Kites.  Even the ducklings, they were all there.  They made me proud!  Even Ozzie was his charming self, if a little slobbery.

But I didn’t get any pictures since I lent my tripod to my friend.  I attempted to use the big lens plus extender hand held, but those images would make you sea-sick.  Maybe because I missed out yesterday I went out when I saw a hawk on the post out there just now, and caught a couple of dragonflies too.  5-8dragonfly35-8dragonfly25-8dragonfly15-8dragonflyface.jpg

And another image of the Glossy Ibis when I was using the tripod earlier yesterday.  You can see the iridescence of the feathers.  And I hadn’t seen the blue detailing at the eye before either.  Beautiful bird, I wonder what has made him decide to visit now?  5-8glossyibis