A favorite miracle…


My favorite Hydrangea is the “snow ball”, it brings out the kid in me. But these are wonderful too: Oak Leaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia). Multi-blossom flowers in one bloom are one of God’s awesome miracles; layers and layers of exquisiteness.

Oak leaves and blooms. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Oak Leaf Hydrangea buds and blooms. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Close up of Oak Leaf Hydrangea. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg.

Layers of loveliness…


Layers and layers of Dahlia petals. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Took a walk this morning and was stopped still by these blossoms. They appear to be the treasured tuber-growing Dahlias. Their dainty charm requires that tubers be dug and preserved carefully during cold winters and replanted in the warming spring days.

The Dahlia you brought to our isle
Your praises forever shall speak

‘Mid gardens as sweet as your smile
And colour as bright as your cheek.

–Lord Holland (1773–1840)

The flower reminds me of layers of petticoats worn in days of yore. Copyright 2017, Pamela Breitberg.

Ahhhhh……the lovely Dahlia. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Inexhaustible loveliness…


Bougainvillea vine seems to ceaselessly bloom and is therefore a popular choice to establish on garden arbors. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Awe-some entrance to Butterfly World. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Elusive beauty…


White Morpho, equally as strikingly beautiful as the Blue Morpho. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Blue Morpho at rest, which is a rare sight. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

“Morph” means change, yet for this family of butterflies it has a different connotation. The Morpho butterflies are so named for their beauty and shape, in reference to Aphrodite. Images of these creatures require patience because when they are visible, they spend most time in the air, rarely settling on a plant long enough to focus and capture (photographically).

This site goes into details of the variety of Morpho butterflies: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morpho

 

Natural harmony…


Mexican Sunflower is joined by the similarly colored Long wing butterfly. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Brilliant blooming colors in abundance successfully camouflaged a multitude of tropical butterflies. Butterfly World in Florida’s Coconut Creek is all that the name implies plus more. It could just as aptly be named Butterfly, Bird and Bloom World. The Piano Key or a related “long wing” (Heliconius Melpomene or Heliconius Erato) butterfly here has lighted on a Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia diversifolia). These two butterfly species often crossbreed, so I am unsure of this one’s specific identity.

For more information check out:

Butterfly World in action. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

 

Durable, beneficial, loveliness…


This delicate bloom can withstand the harsh shoreline environment including winds and waters. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

This delicate bloom can withstand the harsh shoreline environment including winds and waters. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Time on the beach, for me, includes checking out the plants on the inland edges. My newness to the area had me assuming that this thick, prolific mass was native to the area. Closer study has taught me this is not the case.

Natal Plum (Carissa macrocarpa) is the African relative of Florida’s native Coco Plum. Both species live on the sandy shores. Both have edible plum-like fruits. Natal Plums’s invasive character includes spine tipped leaves which are oft overlooked with focus going to their graceful year-long blooming white flowers and reddish fruit.

After flowering the Natal Plum fruits emerge here, still too unripe for eating. The “plum” is the only non-poisonous part of the Natal Plum. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg

Ready to eat Natal Plum. Copyright 2017 Pamela Breitberg