19 Jan 2012

‘When Teza’s Garden Tangoed with PhotoShop!’


Lets get something straight, right from the hop! I am not a fan of PhotoShop when it comes to the garden! How many time have I overheard someone say: ‘But that’s not what the picture on the tag looks like!’ Really? I guess this is why I prefer a simple tag: Botanical Latin name, and price. This way I have to do my own homework! Hopefully I will have discovered what the plant in question will look like in bloom [a shout out for display gardens!] or, if I’m particularly lucky, there will be one in bloom in the tray that I am choosing from! Having said that…… the thought of PhotoShop engaged in a seductive Tango here in Teza’s Garden….. lets just say the results could be stunning, if not entirely unrealistic!

1025 Hakonechloa macra ‘All Gold’ and Cornus alternifolia ‘Golden Shadows’

While it is true that this photo, in reality, did afford me a mesmerizing example of the contrast between leaf colouration, the deep wine in the foreground, the delightful pink blush in the background, it now takes on the feel of a painting!

competition photo11edited Cercidiphyllum japonicum ‘Rotfuchs’ [Red Fox]

For those who have problems with Cercis, I would strongly suggest this beautiful tree, whose leaves, albeit smaller in surface area that the Cercis, still have that wonderful heart shape to them. With this cultivar in particular, new foliage is a deep purple colour with gold veining! Spectacular without the assistance of PhotoShop!

Copy (2) of DSC_0140edited She who needs to assistance from PhotoShop….. but still, I could not resist! If you’re going to be a rebel, do so confidently!

Copy of DSC_0257edited Beware the tags that offer saturated blues like this photo! Granted, the flowers are decidedly more blue than purple, in reality this is just a visualization of a dream that keeps looping through my subconscious!

Copy of DSC_0318edited Dracocephalum ruyschianum

And then there is this…… a unique and hard to find plant that doesn’t need any bloody dance lessons, let alone a tango!

DSC_0360 Cotimus coggygria ‘Grace’

To highlight a special effect, such as the foliage of ‘Grace’, sometimes it ‘helps’ to do the Tango, but only to ‘highlight’ an already unique photograph. So many of my pictures catch me off guard!

DSC_0374_edited-1  Aster ‘Little Carlow’

I enjoy this little known Aster. ‘Little Carlow’ is very popular amongst English gardeners, but is still relatively uncommon here. Such a pity considering its highly mildew resistant foliage, and stunning iridescent flowers!

DSC_0381_edited-1  ‘Cory, are you shimmering, or are you just happy to see me!’

Truth be told, his flowers truly are of an icy blue opalescence! He is single-handedly responsible for my obsession with all flowers blue!

DSC_0424_edited-1My God, that flower is so blue, why it’s casting a shadow on the brick!’

Why yes, yes it is! Ceratostigma willmottianum ‘My Love’ captured my immediate attention with its combination of fabulously chartreuse foliage and sky blue flowers, to say nothing of it’s ruby infused stems and branches! Tender as she is [reputedly Zone 7] I cannot live without her presence gracing Teza’s Garden!

DSC_0457_edited-1 Actaea simplex ‘Hillside Black Beauty’

It’s beauty is only transcended by the intoxicating aroma of these mesmerizing flower spikes! A late summer, early Fall bloomer here in Teza’s Garden, if you’ve got a spot close to where people congregate, plant it and sit back and be amazed as people crane their necks to detect where the delicious fragrance is coming from!

DSC_0550[1]_edited-1 The Bold Foliage of the Shaded Walk

When I set out the create the Shaded Walk, I knew that one of its unique features, aside of being filled with rare and unusual plants, would be that the majority of said plants would boast bold foliage! Diphylleia cymosa, a grealy under used and under appreciated native was the ideal perfect fit!

DSC_0579_edited-1 Nectaroscordum siculum ‘Bulgaricum’

Granted, though I describe it as a vampire’s perfect lair, there is a good deal of morning sun that filters into the garden, and it is at this time of day when this wonderful bulb looks it’s absolute best!

DSC_0588_edited-1 Thalictrum ‘Black Stockings’

I mentioned those photographs that catch me off guard. This shot of the gentle finger’s of morning sunlight caressing the unique flowers of one of many Thalictrum here in Teza’s Garden left me somewhat speechless. In reality, it had been nothing more than point, focus and shoot! With or without Tango lessons, it remains a personal favourite!

DSC_0848edited Spigelia marilandica

A recent shout-out from Joy, reminded me that even the most fickle of gardeners can have a sudden change of heart. There was a time when I would hard pressed to be able to point out a flower with a red or yellow flower in my garden repertoire. Too bright! Too garish! I like flowers to show off in an understated way – by their uniqueness and or rareness. Leave the bright and sassy flowers for the sunny borders! Oh yes, this gardener comes with more biases and idiosyncrasies than you could ever imagine! And then, along came my Spi Guy as I now lovingly refer to this North American native as!

DSC_0850edited Gentiana septemfida var. Lagadochiana Select

The faster you Tango with PhotoShop@ the more startling the results! Goodness me, these blooms look as if they might melt with too much sunlight. Lucky for me they are more than happy in partial shade!

New_Image_edited-1Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’

The very first photo ever taken during the creation of Teza’s Garden! I remember it as though it were yesterday!

Oops3_edited-1  Syneilesis aconitifolia

A favourite to help accentuate the importance of texture when creating a shade garden. Syneilesis causes a stir from the time it emerges from the ground in Spring, all fuzzy, furry tiny little aliens, through its awkward ‘I look like the umbrella you find in those fancy pink drinks!’ right up until it looks like this, boldly demanding an audience with everyone who should stumble upon it unsuspectingly – a relatively common occurrence here in Teza’s Hortus Magnificum [the reason behind the name!] 

prowse grass entry_edited-1In The Gloaming: The Shaded Sanctuary’

and lastly, one for Joy! I too am a huge fan of this photo, captured on the anniversary of my Grandmother’s death in the previous garden of two of my favourite garden friends.

So… no more Tangos with PhotoShop! Are you people who make plant tags listening! Give us the real deal or give us nothing at all!

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