Today at Hillhaven

A sampling of images from my walk around our property this morning, plus some later in our studio. I am SO HAPPY spring is here!!!! – g

Clockwise from top left: azalea, fern, Trillium, Spanish Bluebells (Hyacinthoides hispanica), ceramic eggs, Lilac (Syringa vulgaris), White Spanish Bluebell, Shuttlecock Fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris), Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum).

New Images

I have so many projects going right now. Among them, I’ve been working on a series of floral still lifes for one of the stock agencies that represents my work in England. So I’ve been collecting blossoms from around the property – from our darling crab apple tree and some taken last month from the Blireiana plum. The tulips are from Skagit Valley.

What I send as stock photos are “straighter” versions of the shots. With most of these, I was just playing hooky and having fun playing around with some textures. – g

A Magical Spring Morning

Saturday promised fair weather so we ventured on a morning outing to Lakewold Gardens, our first time there. The beginning of May is promoted as the best time to visit and oh, how magnificient it proved to be! We discovered a magical, graceful and thoughtfully designed garden with a lovely balance of classical and informal elements. I thought we might have missed the Mt. Fuji cherry trees, or that they would have been decimated by the recent heavy rains, but no, they were in full bloom, perfect, with every blossom open and backlit, and only a delicate few beginning to drift down to the brick walkway.

Narcissus overflowing the parterres glowed in the morning light beneath the trees and my breath was literally taken away. I took this impressionist inspired shot to represent the dreamlike atmosphere.

But this was only one of so many scenes that captivated and delighted us all morning. An abundant collection of Rhododendron Loderi cast their heavenly fragrance throughout the grounds, reminding me to plant at least one at Hillhaven this year. It has been said that scent carries our memories, and the perfume of the Loderi conjures gossamer wisps of memory, elusive but joyful.

A charming woodland path followed a burbling stream down to Gravelly Lake and along the way I came across a fantastic specimen of one of my favorite springtime trees, the Shindeshojo Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Shindeshojo’). Anything you read about this tree says it has striking red spring foliage but I’ve never found it to be red. It’s truly PINK!
And one final image of a wonderfully enchanting place. We can’t wait to return! – g

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