Monday, December 6, 2010

The Fall . . .

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Just a few short weeks ago I was taken by some small splashes of color in our garden, and thought I'd try taking a few pictures, in view of putting together a little celebration of Autumn. Sometimes one doesn't have to go far or seek out exotic subjects in order to have little fun with a camera, so my own back yard was as good a place as any to start. I thought I had plenty of time to get them posted while Autumn was still in the air. Little did I know that Winter was going to start a month early this year.
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At the end of October there were still some tomatoes on the vines which had somehow escaped being harvested.
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The last of the lavender . . .
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Trumpeting orange glory to the heavens . . .
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Funny how tomatoes go wrinkled after just a few weeks, while with people it takes 50 or 60 years for it to happen.
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Noisette was pretending not to notice she was modeling her fur to an international audience.
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But the biggest surprise of the day was the discovery that a Chinese Lantern plant had somehow managed to seed itself in the side yard, and prosper there ! I can assure you we had no hand in helping it arrive here. It appeared as if by magic. What better botanic mascot to have show up unbidden on a blog named the Magic Lantern Show than a Chinese Lantern plant? A magical coincidence if there ever was one. What a crazy plant too. I'd never seen one so close up before.
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And like tomatoes, they start out green before going bright orange. Astonishing that nature could produce such a bright pigment.
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I was quite fascinated by the lantern plant . . . couldn't help but keep clicking away from all angles.
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33 comments:

Nadege said...

I have never seen Chinese lanterns "alive". They are gorgeous and your photos stunning.

Amy said...

That plant is so appropriately named! They look just like the lanterns above shop entrances everywhere in China. It's such a bright and pretty color!

Lorrene said...

I'm not a tomato. It took me 80 years to earn some wrinkles.

I love the photo's.

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Love your Chinese Lantern Lamp. We still have new rose buds opening even as open roses are drying up an falling off. A few green beans hang on and the Meyers Lemons are ripening.

pRiyA said...

My goodness, cats ARE ubiquitous aren't they? They were there at the cemetery, in the video, there is one defiantly ON my dining table right now and here is another one, a grey one when the blog post is all about bright colours in the garden!
Your photographs in this post are gorgeous. I love bright splashes of colour. But no prizes for guessing which picture I went back to see again!
:-D

Jingfen said...

wow, I've been wondering the name of this plant and even asked in my blog, but none answer is offered. I'm so happy to find the name here, very beautiful shots!
Jingfen

victoria eugenia said...

Felicitaciones por estas fotos tan bonitas, las flores preciosas, el gato... Muchos saludos. Victoria.

@eloh said...

Beautiful as always.... except those tomatoes... though I have a feeling that sooner rather than later I'll love them too.

mythopolis said...

I have tried for two years to sow Chinese lanterns in my yard. Somehow, they don't like my yard. But then, I am a long ways from China! Nice shots!

The Christmas Invaders said...

㖮㙘㖟㗰㘪㙓㘯㘟 !

Si j'ai dit une bétise, je te prie de m'en excuser......mais l'idée est là....

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Amazing photos, particularly the Chinese Lantern Plant. Love what your cat is wearing this Autumn too - is it available in my size?

TechnoBabe said...

Noisette is a great model. Clute picture. And the pictures of your yard are so pretty. I even like the tomatoes left on the vine.

James said...

Beautiful shots Owen! The plants may have wilted and gone but the photos will last a long time.

I finally got my external hard drive hooked up and my photos imported. Next step will be going through them, editing and posting. Stay tuned. :)

Steve said...

Lovely to have some reminders of colour now that we are mired in all this white and grey...

Le Journal de Chrys said...

J'aime particulièrement ta dernière photographie!!!!

TheChieftess said...

Absolutely wonderful photos Owen!!! The Bokeh effect on all of your macros is wonderful!!! And Noisette is a love...

How magical indeed to have the Chinese lantern plant spontaneously generate in your yard!!! Serendipity abounds!!!

Owen said...

Hi Nadege, thanks !

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Amy, would love to go to China one day to see for myself, for now will have to look at these and just dream about it...

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Hello Lorrene, if you didn't get any wrinkles until 80, wow, I would have loved to have known you at 50 or 60 then !
:-)

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Ah Oakland, if roses are still blooming, things must be alright then...

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Dear Priya,
Cat's on the dinner table are fine, on the condition that they say, "Please pass the fish", and "thank you", instead of just helping themselves...
:-)

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Hello Jing, glad to be of service ! I once asked on my blog about the names of some flowers that I didn't know, and Clo knew all of them... you can find a link to Clo's marvellous blog in my sidebar, Photos sans cible, par Clo...

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Victoria, muy muchas gracias ! I'm so sorry, my Spanish is terrible, but I really appreciate you kind message which I sort of understood even so...
:-)

...louciao... said...

How lovely to be chez vous a little bit. I was getting weary traipsing around those Paris haunts.

A friend recently brought us a stem of Chinese lanterns from a plant that had popped up unexpectedly in their garden. The colour is more of a pumpkin hue, though--much more subdued than the fiery reds of yours--perhaps because of the Canadian influence. That last photo you have here is mesmerizing! I so love the rich tones and detailed textures against the soft background. A real toad's eye view.

Noisette is adorable. How gracious of her to sit still for a portrait.

Owen said...

@eloh ! They will grow on you, I promise, just as they did with me, and one day you will be loving them...

The green Chinese Lanterns for some reason made me think of Fried Green Tomatoes, from the American south...

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Hey Myth, maybe you could try potting them in potting soil, if they don't like your yard for some reason ??? Paint your thumb green first...
:-)

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Dear Christmas Invaders alias Cath... j'étais à un click de supprimer le commentaire, pensant que c'était un spam, et puis j'ai dit, non, ce n'est pas possible... et j'ai bien ri quand j'ai vu qui c'était... voilà, merci pour le fou rire !!!

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Dear Laura,
I'm so happy you like our new furry outerwear line this Fall...
Yes, I'm sure Noisette would look lovely on you, like in the photo on your page, you could have two ear and cheek warmers, one on each side ! So, btw, is your hair really as red as it appears in that photo ??? Noisette looks great with redheads ! Just wanted you to know that, in case that could influence your purchasing decision...
:-)

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Techno, I don't think there is a cuter model in all of France !

Owen said...

Hey James,
Oh boy, can't wait !!!

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Steve, what grey, all I see is white ! Or maybe that's just because there is a thick layer of frost on my glasses !
:-)

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Bonjour Chrys, je comprends... les tomates qui ont passé l'age de leur jeunesse sont moins attirantes... mais bon, peut-être, comme pour @eloh ci-dessus, si tu laisses le temps, elles vont réussir à t'apprivoiser ? Mais je suis d'accord, les lanternes magiques sont... magiques...
:-)

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Hi Chieftess, Bokeh rules ! Thank you so much... serendipity is what makes my world go round...

Owen said...

Dearest Lynne !

How good of you to drop by for tea and schnapps right in between two comment sessions, as you can see above... I needed a breather and something to wet the whistle with...

I know, (imagine a sort of drawn out "I know" there, as in sympathizing in an exagerrated manner...) traipsing and galumphing all over Paris is SO exhausting... sometimes it's just awfully nice to hang out in one's own backyard, with just the cats for company...

Noisette for some reason has been unusually affectionate of late, and we can't fathom why, it is out of character for her. But we'll take it... until she goes back to her usual miss Grumpy act...

Be well. Would you like a beer instead of tea ??? I'm off to the fridge for a cold one... and Saj, how about you ???

Nevine said...

The colors... oh the colors... they made my blood melt. Beautiful beautiful shots, Owen. Lavender is one of my favorites, though we can't have it in Texas... too hot. I had a huge bush in my front yard in Belgium. And I sure enjoyed not only looking at it and smelling it... but cooking with it. Yum! And poor tomatoes... they took a bit of a beating from nature, it seems. But little Noisette is quite the exquisite jewel. Noisette and Amande... what delightful names for such lovely little cats.

I'm so glad you went out in your backyard and snapped away. These shots are priceless. Thanks for sharing, Owen! :-)

Nevine

Owen said...

Oh Nevine, there you are too... would like to have a beer with Lynne and I ? I was just off to the fridge... or maybe a glass of wine instead ? Red, or white ? I think there's still a bottle of the yummy chablis around, but there are some reds too, which can stand up and speak volumes of poetry all by themselves... not that we are heavy drinkers around here, far from it... a little goes a long way in this house, but we prefer less but good, rather than more, which finally is less, if that makes sense...

Anyway, I'm rambling... I didn't know that lavender doesn't do well in Texas, given that it flourishes in southern France, where it gets pretty darn hot in the summertime... Or is it just that the armadillos eat it before it gets started in life ? Maybe if you tried inside a greenhouse ?

And I will pass your kind words on to Noisette, I'm sure she will react with total indifference, as she does to everyone's kind words. But if you massage the back of her neck a little, she might just tolerate you...
:-)
Oh, and as for Noisette and Amande, I'm not sure I've mentioned it, but Noisette is Amande's mother... Noisette had a litter of four : Cacahuette, Pirouette, Pistache, and Amande... Amande was the last one out, the runt of the litter, so we kept her, but had to give the other darlings away... two cats is as much as we could manage here...

And finally, couldn't help but wonder, you said these colors made your blood melt, but that implies your blood was frozen prior to seeing these... and that I cannot imagine or comprehend, for I'm sure you are very much a warm blooded mammalian...
:-)
But I'm sure having you melt a little is a good thing...
:-)
(but I hope the second chapter of this post, coming soon, won't freeze you up again)

Stickup Artist said...

Wow. You have a really nice garden. From the luscious rotten tomatoes, your sweetly demure cat, to the amazing appearance of those gorgeous red Chinese Lanterns. I've never seen those before and would love to get my hands on some! Beautiful bounty!

Catherine said...

beuatiful close up shots - so evocative of Autumn - are they all buried under snow now??

Margaret Pangert said...

Your Chinese Lanterns are exquisite! The macros are a work of art.
There is something nostalgic about the "tomates un peu trop mures." Those images evoke memories from other autumns...
And rich color everywhere!

The Sagittarian said...

Good to see you've put your bum down long enough to get your lens out!! beautiful results too, and that mog is so cute and doesn't she know it!!

Peter said...

Difficult to get redder than these lanterns!
Some wonderful photos here; also fading flowers and fruits are worth to get some close-ups! (Sometimes, but not always, more delicate with humans, perhaps?) :-)

Elisabeth said...

I'm new to your blog, Owen via Alberto's. I'm taken by the extremes of decay against the colours of life here in these photographs. 'Magical' shots, and that gorgeous cat in the midst of it all, as nonchalant as any. Good to meet you here.

K'line Bloom said...

Salut Owen,
Un petit coucou en passant, un peu "hibou" encore comme tu le vois...
Pas besoin d'aller acheter des guirlande électriques, c'est déjà Noël avec ces jolies lanternes, tu nous gâtes (j'aime leur délicatesse).
Bises amicales et une caresse à Noisette ;)
Meoh !

the fly in the web said...

Those Chinese lanterns made my day.
I had them for years in one house...but they would never take in the next one's garden.

You may..or may not...remember that I sent you some photographs of the church in my new town.....which was due to be demolished.
Well, people power has prevailed..it is going to be restored!

Owen said...

Stickup, hopefully you can find some... apparently they propagate fairly easily... happy hunting...

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Hi Catherine, post that just went up should answer your question...
:-)

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Saj ! Well, the mog is back for an encore today...

And I know I'm a bit of a bum sometimes, but honestly !
:-)

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Hi Peter, I guess that's why I shoot so many abandoned cars and houses and stuff, most people won't let me near them !
:-)
Maybe I should try a different aftershave ?

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Thank you Margaret... it is so nice to see you again, I was beginning to think you'd given up on the blogosphere... welcome back...

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Hi Elisabeth, thanks so much for dropping in, especially if you came from Alberto's place... he is good company, when he's not sailing off somewhere. Welcome...

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Bonsoir hibou K'line, ah, si cela pourrait servir comme décoration de noel, là, je suis ravi ! Mais peut-être les suivants avec la neige dessus seraient encore mieux assorties pour la saison ?

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Hi Fly,
That is wonderful news then, if the church shall be restored... maybe it too could be decorated... with some magic lanterns...

Pastelle said...

J'adore ces lanternes. Sais tu qu'on les appelle aussi "amour en cage" ?
J'en ai mis sur mon blog il y a quelque temps. :)