Unexpected in common hours

Woods in Spring

“If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”
– Henry David Thoreau





The deer love to eat our hostas.  But ever since new homes were built on the ridge behind us, cutting off the deer herds’ travel lanes, the deer have stayed away from our woodland garden.  The hostas are flourishing…









“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”
(Rachel Carson)

“The optimist sees the rose…”

When we went away for the weekend there were no blooms on the pink rose bush.  However, a message on Sunday from our neighbor that her daughter had picked one of our roses let us know that blooms appeared while we were gone…

Pink rose


“The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious to the rose”

~ Kahlil Gibran





come back
believer in shade
believer in silence and elegance
believer in ferns
believer in patience
believer in rain

(from Empty Water, by W.S. Merwin)

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Through a Window

Flowering Crape Myrtle through the upstairs window

Crape myrtle through the upstairs window

Look through more windows or join Cee’s challenge here.


Dance upon the mountains like a flame, 2018

Flame azaleas grow wild here in the mountains of North Georgia, and I always look forward to seeing them bloom in the spring.  They may very well be my favorite flowers.

Yellow flame azalea

Orange flame azalea

Light orange flame azalea


“Come Fairies, take me out of this dull world, for I would ride with you upon the wind and dance upon the mountains like a flame!”  (William Butler Yeats)



Bearded Iris

From my “photos only” blog…

captured for a moment

Bearded Iris

View original post

My Christmas cactus: blooming for the third time in 12 months

About a zillion websites explain how to make a Christmas cactus bloom.  It is tricky, they say, and the plant must have at least 12 hours a day of absolute darkness.  Water must be limited.  Cool temperatures are necessary.

My Christmas cactus just finished blooming for the third time in the past twelve months, and I’ve done none of the above to make it bloom.  It sits on the windowsill in my kitchen where it receives indirect sunlight all day and fluorescent light until I go to bed around midnight.  I water it once a week and keep our house at a comfortable temperature, certainly not as cool 50-55 degrees F. (12 C.) as the experts suggest.

It gets no special treatment at all, and yet it bloomed last June, last January, and now again beginning in late April…

Christmas cactus buds

Christmas cactus_

Christmas cactus 2


“We cannot choose the day or time when we will fully bloom. It happens in its own time.”  (Denis Waitley)

Irises: “Like blown glass…”

“…We had the irises, rising beautiful and cool on their tall stalks, like blown glass, like pastel water momentarily frozen in a splash, light blue, light mauve, and the darker ones, velvet and purple, black cat’s ears in the sun, indigo shadow…”  (Margaret Atwood)


Our first iris is still blooming…

Still blooming

And now we have more.  Such a change from last year when none of the irises bloomed at all.

Azaleas: So many colors, so many varieties

The azaleas have been blooming for weeks now.  They are absolutely beautiful this year, and I just couldn’t quit taking photos.  All of the photos are of azaleas blooming in our woodland garden…

bright pink azalea


“Just living is not enough… one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” (Hans Christian Anderson)


pink azalea4


“Every flower is a soul blossoming in nature.”  (Gerard De Nerval)



“Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower.”  (John Harrigan)



“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.”  (Luther Burbank)


pink azalea 2

pink and white azalea

pink and white azalea 2


“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”  (Marcus Tullius Cicero)



“The earth laughs in flowers.”  (Ralph Waldo Emerson)


both pink and white together

“I must have flowers, always, and always.”  (Claude Monet)

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Close Ups

Monochrome rose

Monochrome iris

Monochrome wisteria


See more close ups in black and white or join Cee’s challenge here.