Hooks, blurs and frogs

Recently I’ve been going through my older pictures, taken back in the age of film, and putting some of the better ones on my Flickr page. Here are a few recent examples. Click to embiggenify.

Mammillaria pennispinosa

Transplanting the seedlings of Mammillaria pennispinosa into individual pots requires an unusual technique. With the hooked spines embedded in your left thumb and index finger, hold the plant in position as you fill the pot with the potting soil with your right hand. Using a pair of embroidery scissors, free the plant from your fingers by snipping off the tips of the spines. Then extract the hooks from your fingers.

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For a while yesterday it seemed that spring had finally arrived, with temperatures around 70°F. There even were thunderstorms in the later afternoon and evening, with hail. All that was missing was the tornado warning. It couldn’t last, of course. It’s back to winter this morning, with north winds and temperatures down in the lower 30°s.

While it was pleasant out yesterday, I made a trip to the botanical garden with my toy camera. Very little was in bloom, but I did find some color.

Continue reading “Sprung”

New toy

Geranium "Rozanne"

I recently bought a new little go-everywhere camera, a Nikon S3500. The specifications are a bit silly: how often does anyone need 20 megapixels? I took it to the botanical garden yesterday to give it a workout. The pictures are very good overall but not utterly fantastic. (If you want ultimate image quality, you need a DSLR (or better) with a large sensor. (Or better yet, a view camera.) That requires real money.) The camera doesn’t record purples and violets accurately (a problem with every digital camera I’ve ever used), a nuisance but not a deal-breaker for a cheap camera. The surprise is that the “macro” mode actually is useful. The image above is cropped but is otherwise unaltered, and was taken hand-held. Right-click to see it at full size. The flower is about an inch across.

Strings attached

Virginia Margheim Musser, Howard Rains, Roger Netherton, Tricia Spencer and Tommy Jordan.
Virginia Margheim Musser, Howard Rains, Roger Netherton, Tricia Spencer and Tommy Jordan.

I’ve posted the best of my Winfield pictures at my Flickr site. The photo above is of the old-time band that supplied music for Saturday evening’s contra dance. Roger, the fiddler on the left tapping his foot double-time, took home yet another violin in the old-time fiddle competition earlier that evening. ((You can listen to his performances here.)) Here’s the band late in the dance:

Here’s a panorama from early in the dance.

Update: Here’s a complete dance: