Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #143 – Colourful April

Amy asks for a colourful April this week – and usually it is, even in Sweden. This year though, has so far been some degrees colder than usual. But, there is a positive side to it as well …

Sweet April showers do spring May flowers. – Thomas Tusser

To get you in the mood – tulips from Keukenhof in the opener!

However, with the lack of colours (except for the hepaticas I posted in the last challenge) this April, I first decided to use April colours from earlier years, starting with my garden magnolias. But, after a day on the hunt in the forest… I changed my mind. Surely there must be some colours to capture this year as well!

A sea of last year’s grass softly carried my feet up to the old sallow.
The silken colours against the grey trees –
And the lower you go towards the ground…
…the more colourful it gets. Mosses and lichen, mushrooms and leaves.
…even if modestly displayed. Nettles and the alternate-leaved golden-saxifrage are keeping each other company. In Sweden we call this tiny yellow plant ”golden powder” Due to drying wetlands, I understand it is becoming rare, and it is protected in several countries.

Wood anemonies are usually abundant in April, but 2021 the snow and cold has kept them down so much that I doubt we shall see them carpeting the forest floor this year.

Anyhow – spring has sprung, and the colours are beginning to arrive here too. Hope you are enjoying lovely weather and delightful days!

Finally a big Thank you for using your abundant imaginative powers for last week’s You Pick It! Inspirational, diverse, sweet, thrilling, magical…we have enjoyed your choices to the full! Now we hope to see you here again for Colourful April. Please use the Lens-Artists tag and add a link to Amy’s colourful original post!

Next week Tina will be your host. Stay tuned, take care and be kind to others and to yourself.

Thursday Thoughts – April Weather

Well, looking out my window two days ago – winter was back again…

The doves got new snow caps –
– but my spring flower pot looked a bit sulky…
– and the poor scilla looked more blue than ever.

When the sun finally came out, everything looked sparkly and wonderful again – April…just fooling you…
The little Hepatica in wedding dress?

April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.

William Shakespeare

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #142 – You Pick It!

”Like robin’s song or bluebird’s wing

Or throats that make the marshes ring,

Her beaming face and winsome grace

Are greetings from the heart of spring.”

– From John Burroughs’ Hepatica

I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn’t photograph them.
— Diane Arbus

This week it is my turn to host You Pick it! And, I have chosen different faces of Anemone Hepatica. This tiny flower is the first one to appear in our forests in spring, and it is a much loved beauty. Many people go out looking for her already the first sunny day of March. The flower has got many names – as it usually is with loved ones…She is also named the common hepatica, liverwort, kidneywort, or pennywort, and belongs to the buttercup family Ranunculaceae, native to woodland in temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere.

Anemone hepatica grows 5–15 cm (2–6 in) high. Leaves and flowers emerge directly from the rhizome, not from a stem above ground. In Sweden I have never seen them grow higher than 7-8 cm.

I am not interested in shooting new things – I am interested to see things new. – Ernst Haas

The flowers are blue, purple, pink, or white. The white variety is not common in Sweden, but in my forest all the others grow and they are flowering simultaneously. If they grow mostly in the shadow, their colours are darker – the sun makes them turn purple.

The Hepatica is protected in Sweden, and so are all our orchids. In this photo we can see two stems broken – but I do hope the flowers were not picked. They would have been too short to have in a vase too…
Only photograph what you love.
– Tim Walker
And finally, a lovely surprise when this photo was opened on the computer – a thin spider’s thread making its way between the two flowers. It made me smile.

I am grateful for this lovely morning alone in the forest. I was mostly lying on the ground, but it was very rewarding. And I was very hungry when I came back home again! This day the temperature reached 15 degrees C. But it lasted only for two days, so, now we are back at 7 degrees again. Nature’s wonders are still with us though – and I want them to be slow…

Thank you for all small and big geometric examples last week for Patti’s challenge! We quickly realised that geometry is to be found everywhere we look, and there were so many surprises with things never thought of before!

Last time Tina started off You Pick It by saying …”we hope you’ll share a subject that is near and dear to you, that you find interesting, or challenging, or perhaps that shows us something new or unique to you.”

So, this week it’s all up to you – choose your subject and share whatever it is about it that you find interesting. We are looking forward to seeing your interpretations. Please use the tag and link to my original post. Next week, Amy will be your host.

Thursday Thoughts – In My Windows

As the garden is waiting out in the cold…let’s make a short walk in some of my windows! Most plants are starting to enjoy life as the light is returning.

One of my many begonias – originally got from a friend at school some 50 years ago. The funny thing is that my old friend last week got a new cutting from mine, as she had lost hers many years ago. The circle is complete!
Phalaenopsis are in flower a couple of times a year, and right now there are quite many of them simultaneously.
Many of my flowers are ”stolen” from friends and relatives, restaurants and hotels. This yellow cactus I brought home from a ski resort in Dalarna – a twig from the mother plant is all you need. Yellow is unusual, we mostly see red or white – possibly pink too.
This is a 19th century species of geranium, L´ Elégante. A bit difficult to handle, as it is hanging and thus easily broken. But elegant it is.
A purple mini Phalaenopsis – lightening up my window. This was mother’s favourite colour.

Medinilla magnifica – the second time I have managed to make it flower again – very happy if the buds will open up instead of falling off…

Finally Alocasia – not a favourite really, but very special…I like the back of the leaf more …

Thank you for the short visit in my windows, towards summer I hope to give you a tour outdoors and in the glass house. Until then – I must of course send you my Russian begonia – my pride. About 2×1.5 meters today.

Thursday Thoughts – A Colourful Week

Grateful for a wonderful spring bouquet…

…and my lovely indoor flowers. Spring is still waiting…