Weekly Photo Challenge: NEW

Weekly Photo Challenge:  NEW

 

January 1, 2015 sunrise 013

 

This is one of my first photos of the new year, taken soon after sunrise on New Year’s Day.

I am happy to see the many plump buds on the tips of these Dogwood branches.

Each bud will open into a delicate white flower in early April.  There will be a billowy white profusion of flowers here in a few short weeks.

But on this January morning we see only the fine lacework of the Dogwood’s branches, and a profusion of buds.

And through them, the sky is fresh and new, deeply blue, and giving us good omens for the new year ahead.

 

In response to the Daily Post’s

Weekly Photo Challenge:  New

 

January 1, 2015 sunrise 006

*

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2015

*

 

“We spend January 1st walking through our lives,

room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done,

cracks to be patched.

Maybe this year, to balance the list,

we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives

…not looking for flaws, but for potential.”
 

Ellen Goodman

*

 

January 1, 2015 sunrise 012

Patience

November 12, 2014 golden day 134

.

“Patience is power.
Patience is not an absence of action;
rather it is “timing.”
It waits on the right time to act,
for the right principles
and in the right way.”

Fulton J. Sheen

.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 047

.

“A waiting person is a patient person.

The word patience means the willingness

to stay where we are

and live the situation out  to the full

in the belief that something hidden there

will manifest itself to us.”

 

Henri J.M. Nouwen

.

November 12, 2014 golden day 146

.

“Knowing trees,

I understand the meaning of patience.

Knowing grass, I can appreciate persistence.”

Hal Borland

.

 

November 22, 2014 frost 017.

.

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

.

 

November 4, 2014 parkway 082

The Beauty Left Behind

November 12, 2014 golden day 042

 

Wind driven leaves filled the air like great golden snowflakes.  The air was soft and moist, unusually warm for a Virginia November.

And it was beginning to rain again.  The road and lawns, slick with new fallen leaves, glowed as golden as the forest in this muted noon time light.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 052

Great fronts of wind and rain, snow and ice rake across the country transforming the landscape.

The season has been rushed along its way.  No lingering, languid autumn this year. 

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 054

No, the wind strips the leaves as they’re still turning and whips them through the air to their terrestrial demise.

You have to be out in it to fully appreciate the spectacle.

And we were.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 100

What could be more beautiful than driving through the golden showers of bright leaves flung against a low, grey sky?

And the world is transformed yet again; the finely crafted beauty left behind, revealed.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 106

Ivy and mistletoe, sculpted branches and mottled bark shine now that their leafy drape has blown away.  Tiny buds dot each branch.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 113

 

Silhouettes of vines, pods, fruits and berries etch fine figures against the sky.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 143

The forest’s canopy is  melting away, opening the woods once again.

Sunlight penetrates what was shaded since early summer.

 

November 12, 2014 golden day 072

 

What was dense has opened; the hidden treasures of the forests revealed.

 

November 15, 2014 garden 029

This is our time to see down to the bones of things; to explore and discover the structure of the landscape.

Which trees harbor the nests of birds and squirrels?  Where might grapevines be found?

 

November 15, 2014 garden 032

 

And what tiny promises of spring might already be waiting along the woody limbs of trees and shrubs?

What beauty has been left behind by the cleansing winds?

 

November 15, 2014 garden 005

*

Words and Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

 

December 13 2013 poinsettias 003

Holiday Wreath Challenge 2014

Dissolution

October 29, 2014 fall color 076

A messy season, fall, when you think of it. 

“Fall,” of course, refers to the countless leaves browning and blowing from every limb of every deciduous shrub and tree.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 041

 

The autumn winds sweep away every bit of what is tired, worn, and dying.

Of course, those same winds also pick up the downy seeds released by wildflowers.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 074

 

They catch the seed filled pine cones and scatter them far from the mother tree.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 043

 

Berries, seed pods, nuts and acorns all take flight on the wind, perhaps landing where they can thrust roots into moist and accepting soil, and grow.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 080

Like  monks sweeping away a completed Tibetan sand painting, nature has a hand in her own dissolution. 

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 056

Vibrant greens gradually fade to reveal the essential golds and purples, scarlets and orange of the forest.

Then even these colors fade to brown and take flight, leaving only the structure of things behind.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 031

Bare branches glow beneath their accumulations of lichen and moss, vines and animal nests;  scars of lost branches and broken limbs revealed.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 052

And it is still beautiful.

All of the essential parts remain. 

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 078

Wind and rain, insects and worms work their magic all winter long, transforming all that has fallen to the Earth into the rich medium of life.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 070

 

Dissolution, cleansing, transformation.

Stillness and rest.

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 036

 

 

Making way for new growth.

 

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 058

 

Words and Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

 

October 29, 2014 fall color 067

Golden October Afternoon

October 28, 2014 fall color 054

*

The sun slips towards the horizon

A bit earlier

On golden October afternoons.

 

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 056

*

As days grow shorter,

Sol  stays lower in the sky.

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 034

 

*

Its rays oblique,

Somehow gentler,

Touching the world with golden fingers of light.

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 055

*

Golden rays illuminate each stalk and leaf,

Penetrating,

Lingering,

Glowing;

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 087

*

Soft halos of light

Consecrate the commonplace.

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 013

*

A loving “Farewell,”

As light slip towards darkness.

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 038

*

Night gains a few more moments

At each day’s close.

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 044

*

 

Sol climbs lower with each passing day,

Paler, cooler,

softer somehow.

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 031

*

And Earth glows golden at the parting,

Basking in the  gifts each illumined moment brings,

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 047

 

*

Burnished bright,

Transmuted by the light,

Prepared  for winter’s long windswept nights.

*

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 007

 

 

Words and Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

 

 

October 28, 2014 fall color 089

 

 

 

 

 

Foundation

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 015

A tree’s trunk serves as its foundation.

Beginning as a fragile stem, it supports the tree from the time of two tiny leaves, until its crown is cloaked with thousands.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 038

Both foundation and conduit, the trunk serves to pipe water up from the roots to support growth among the limbs and canopy.

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 140

So, too, it caries sugars produced during long summer days to other parts of the tree for storage.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 037

Seeds and fruits feed from this rich life-blood of sap flowing through the trunk and branches.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 136

Growing both taller and wider each year, a tree’s trunk records its history.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 115

Growth rings record each year of the tree’s life, both lush and lean.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 131

We can read a tree’s age, and possibly see some of what has happened across its lifetime.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 106

A trunk offers safety and sustenance to many creatures.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 118

Crevices form in its flesh.  A whole web of life  spins itself into being among squirrels and birds, serpents, insects, mice, mistletoe, lichen and moss.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 033

 

Like an epic Yggdrasil, every tree links Earth and sky; above with below; past with future.

 

October 3, 2014 mushrooms 026

Words and Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

 

yggdrasil

 

A Family of Deer, At Suppertime

There are three deer in this photo, buck, doe, and fawn.  Can you find them all?

There are three deer in this photo, buck, doe, and fawn. Can you find them all?

We came upon a family of deer at the approach to Jamestown Island on the Colonial Parkway last evening.  It was after hours for both the island and for the Jamestown museum, to the right of this intersection, so traffic was very light.

The large tree to the right is an oak, and the deer are grazing for acorns.

The large tree to the right is an oak, and the deer are grazing for acorns.

We spotted the two grazing males, first.  My partner slowed and stopped so we could watch them and I could take photos.

He kept saying that he saw the doe peeking out from behind the Park Service sign.  I couldn’t see her; maybe because I was focused on taking photos of the bucks.

But if you look closely, you’ll see her watchful face to the far left in some of the photos.

August 27, 2014 Parkway 016

One by one, the young deer of the group emerged from the tree line and joined the males as we sat there.

August 27, 2014 Parkway 017

The doe remained in the woods, watching. 

Cars leaving the island approached, slowed, and watched.  One or two made the turn, very slowly, past the deer and out towards Jamestown Road and the ferry to Surry.

The trees at the back of the photo, across the road where the doe waits and watches, also include oaks.  It is easiest to find the acorns on the mown grass beneath this giant oak than to find them in the undergrowth of the woods.

The trees at the back of the photo, across the road where the doe waits and watches, also include oaks. It is easier to find the acorns on the mown grass beneath this giant oak than to find them in the undergrowth of the woods.

 

The bucks grew a bit more restless with  cars passing nearby, but stood their ground beneath the great oak tree as the little ones grazed.

 

August 27, 2014 Parkway 021

Acorns, from oaks, feed these deer during fall and winter.

Acorns have begun to form in this photo taken 10 days ago.  The acorns will continue to grow for several more weeks and provide food for many mammals over the winter.  They fall, a few at a time, over a period of months..

Acorns have begun to form in this photo taken 10 days ago. The acorns will continue to grow for several more weeks. They provide food for many mammals over the winter,  falling, a few at a time, over a period of months..

 

Higher in protein and fats than leaves and grass, they are important to winter survival for many species.  But for some reason, oaks in our area didn’t set acorns last autumn.

Without the millions of pounds of acorns normally available, deer, squirrels, and other native mammals suffered a very tough winter.

August 27, 2014 Parkway 022

We’ve been watching for acorns this August, and are very happy to have found evidence of an acorn crop this year.

It should prove easier for the deer to find food in the woods and ravines,  relieving the pressure on them to feed in our gardens.

August 27, 2014 Parkway 024

We love finding deer along the Parkway on our evening drives.

And we encourage them to remain here in the safety of the National Park, staying well away from  the major roads and neighborhoods!

 

The foal is looking back at his mother, across the road in the woods.

The fawn is looking back at his mother, across the road in the woods.

*

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

The Herd (Forest Garden 2014)

Our Herd of Deer (Forest Garden 2014)

Living With A Herd of Deer (Forest Garden 2013)

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 718 other followers

Follow Forest Garden on WordPress.com
Order Classic Caladiums

This Month’s Posts

Topics of Interest