I’m trying to notice more subtle beauty in the landscape. These yellow-tipped succulents carpet the dusty fields around here, a nice contrast to the red/maroon ones. I like the branch nestled in there, embracing an armful of plants. I, also, want to embrace each distinct kind of variation, each growing (and often struggling) plant in this all-too-dry, even parched, southern coast of the-desert-meets-the-sea.
There seem to be a zillion white 5-petaled flowers among the internet images, so I’m not sure what this is, but it seems to have just started blooming.
It’s gotten a bit warmer, approaching the high 70s, and is fairly humid. Nothing like Kansas humidity, though, in part due to the ocean breezes. And I wonder if the salt in the air soaks up some of the moisture? Meteorologist out there, help? We’ve moved our walks to the evening mostly, right after dinner and just before sunset. A pleasant time to be out.
And a good week to see the political process work towards PROGRESS!
How could you have a coastal California blog without it? It’s everywhere and right now it seems to have these lovely purplish-maroon coloration set up against the green and the underlying rusty brown. So it’s actually a bit prettier than usual.
Lots of other things seem to be drying up: the poppies, the ‘highway daisies,’ and many more. We had a bit of a misty drizzle for a while today, but nothing to soothe the parch. The parch continues…
We walked twice today and found these. I love the itty bitty white tips. And the darker magenta in the center. And the zillions of petals (?) or whatever they are. There must be a thousand of them, or more.
We also walked by lavender at the campground, and I don’t think that has appeared in the blog yet. The naturalist on duty told us that most of the shrubs and flowers nearby are non-native. I wonder how they will all fare long-term during this drought, with limited watering. The Midwest should send us some of its plentiful rain!
Ah! I guess I described it well. The internet told me that it is a “sensitive briar” (Mimosa quadrivalvis ) and native to the central US. It was the wildflower of the year for Kansas in 2010!
Up close and personal. Hairy. Tubes. Gourd-like forms. This is actually two kinds of kelp tangled up in each other: the Bullwhip or Elkhorn Kelp (Pelagophycus porra) is the one with the bulbous thing and the hairy one is Feather-Boa Kelp (Egregia menziesii.)
Now, don’t you feel ridiculously erudite and well-informed? There is also a Giant Bladder Kelp that we see quite often. It has leaf-like blades and is a common source of emulsifiers in many foods. I wonder if I could find it listed on the ingredients label (as ‘alginates,’ possibly?)
Cool stuff. We have a book called Life Between the Tides that helps me out with this sort of thing.
Well, not really. A jacaranda tree. I love that name. Have I included it before? If so, it was probably for its vivid purple blossoms. I had heard the name before moving here, but it was in the fuzzy-vague-sorta-memory part of my brain and I had no idea it matched these spectacular trees.
I’m seeing a lot of intense chartreuse along with purple and sky-blue these days. I like it. I even bought a chartreuse-y (or is it more like lime?) green jacket today. It’s marvelous with black as well as blue and purple!
It’s all about the water. Not the sand, not the sky. Not the cliffs, not the plants. Not the gulls, not the pelicans. At least some days, it’s all about the water. The water floods the tears from my eyes and soothes my soul.
Don’t know what it is, but it’s distinctive. Today I walked to the shopping center; later I walked through the campground along the ocean and then through our neighborhood. But I thought this photo close to home would be a nice change. The previous tenants, or perhaps the original owners, planted this. I know a lot of things it’s not, but not what it is! Maybe that’s true of a lot of things? Honeysuckle of some sort?
I daresay I’ve been doing this long enough that I have to keep checking to make sure I don’t repeat myself. The light was just right on these, although I’m not sure the angle was ideal. The brilliance of the yellow-green amazed me, along with the elegance and grace of the form.
But a nice piece of functional sculpture anyway. And isn’t the color variation pleasing? Is the texture built into the form just to provide a less slippery surface when wet underfoot? And doesn’t the sand and the bedraggled dried weed provide good contrast?
I love fog. It is so…atmospheric! There was rarely fog in Kansas, and there certainly was just about every other weather condition you could think of.
Here, the fogs are so very beautiful. They soften and blur the edges and provide a heavy dampness that is such a lovely counterpoint to the nearly invariable sunniness that can make one a bit jaded. “Another nice day in Carlsbad!” we chirp; indeed, these foggy days are even nicer for me, at least.
There was no horizon visible when we looked toward the ocean. Sky and sea were all one. So delicious you can taste it; a moodiness that is gentle and caressing rather than turbulent. Feels like the most delicate of Japanese paintings.
Sepia. Defiantly monochromatic. And can’t you just feel the fuzziness? I think I took this at dusk, too, which intensifies the moodiness. These fuzzy grasses are all over everywhere, and the little puffball seems like a cute baby over there. A bit of relief from the bright, popping colors of the last few days!
Now I’m getting nervous, because I realize it finally happened — I repeated myself day before yesterday with the purple and yellow. It was a previous post that I called “Bi-color” and I said about the same things. Well, consistent…but I don’t think I’ve posted these pink darlings before. If I have, well, forgive me, for they caught my eye — again? And they, too, could be called bi-color with their yellow-tipped petals and centers, along with that deep burgundy.
I can re-read mystery stories years later and never remember who did it or why. So I can revisit flowers and not remember why they captured me. In both cases, pleasure results. Why not?
Need a counterpoint to flowers? This was just lying at the side of the dirt path. I wonder what the white is. Salt comes to mind, but could it be human-applied paint? No, it’s interior, and it didn’t look like a remnant of building materials.
Breakage textures, splintering, chunks, sharp jagged pieces, rough exterior bark against smooth grain of interior — enough to look at, whatever its origins.
So, do the pink-purple ones turn yellow, or the other way around? Maybe they just happily coexist, side by side.
Some of these photos are from native plants, others are immigrants. I don’t really know which are which, and they all add their beauty to the beach environment, which clearly never ceases to please and surprise and comfort and delight me!
You never know what art or writing will tell you about yourself.
Two years ago, I would have said I’m not really into flowers or plants or gardening. But looking at this blog, I think I was missing something very basic and elemental about myself. I wasn’t actively *looking* and so I had no idea what I could teach myself to see and appreciate.
Writing is a conversation with oneself. Photography is a two-way mirror. What I see, what I look at, says something about what’s happening in my brain/heart/soul. What I write is an explanation to myself as well as to a reader.
Well, no, not exactly. More three-way, in layers. It looks like a kaleidoscopic image. Look at those delicate notches near the large petal tips. And the black and orange rounded inner tips. And the little orange dots. And then more white petals at the center. The black and orange parts remind me of butterfly wings.
I think this is some sort of lily, on a long stem. It is about two inches wide. Elegant!
For all you fans of orange, and three-part symmetry, and abundance, Nature brings you the…well, I don’t know, but it’s pretty special, whatever it’s called! These pods hang in clusters and burst open to reveal the vivid orange seedy things with their black cores. It’s an ooh all around!
These might be a variety of Johnny-Jump-Up? They are small and grow on a low shrub. I’ve never seen them before. Why am I noticing all these flowers? Such an abundance here. Super-foggy this afternoon near the beach, but it still feels very much as if summer has arrived. Not hot. Not even much into the 70s. But summerish all the same.
Pretty dramatic against the green and grayish brown. There will undoubtedly be more purple flowers to come, but I went back a ways in my file of photos and found this overlooked white one. I like its shape, its veins, its shadows, and its yellow-beige channels and innards. Those delicate petal-points are elegant, too, as is that big fold at the top. Like a dancer starting her bend and arm gesture for a bow.
Well, at least mellow compared to the previous two sets of yellow flowers. What I love about spring/summer here is the bursts of color that last for months, and as soon as I think I’ve noticed each flowering shrub, I see another one. Lovely lilies!
I don’t know what it’s called, nor even if these are leaves or ??? But they sure are spectacularly dramatic. The light shining through the semi-transparency and the range in hue from bright pink to deepest lipstick-red caught my eye. California summer wows me yet again!
There seem to be new ones all the time. I’m quite fond of purple and it catches my eye. Purple pansies with white pansies is a great combination. Right now I have purple and white agapantha(s) in a vase in my kitchen. Purple and white seems both regal and serene. And crisp, too. Less trite than red and white or blue and white.
Once again, there’s a luscious chartreuse that sets off the purple quite strikingly. The dark left top corner and bright right lower corner help the composition, which my crop also emphasized…thank you, Photo One teacher!
Despite lots of ‘marine layer’ gray, cloudy mornings, there have been gorgeous skies like this along with our ‘May gray’ and ‘June gloom.’ I’m very happy at this time of year because it rarely goes much over 70 degrees even when the sun is out. And it is rarely below 60 during the day. Couldn’t be more perfect. Jeans and a short-sleeved tee, with the lightweight jacket/sweater/shirt just in case, and you’re all set.
It’s great to walk on the beach and through the campground and see all the happy, frolicking folks!
AKA wild duck, a dabbling duck, and scientific name Anas platyrhynchos. You really wanted to know that, eh?!
They were holding down our sidewalk on the way to the beach, and Mr. was sure giving Ms. a talking-to. Gabble gabble quack squawk. We all got quite an earful. They didn’t seem terribly concerned at our approach, although perhaps their conversation went, “No bread crumbs in sight or scent, but they don’t look threatening. Just mind your own business and perhaps they’ll walk around us.” Which we did.
They’re almost the same color as the mystery flower from a few days ago. So vivid it seems painted rather than natural, yet so right against the scrubby, weedy-looking foliage and [unfortunately] parched brown earth. It’s fun to see them open or close depending on the sun. The California state flower is also known as la amapola, copa de oro, and Eschscholzia californica. How’s that for Wikipedia?
Another colonized stone, with its lovely blue-green patina and red-brown spots and crusty white layers. Just two shells embedded themselves, or is it three? I didn’t turn the stone over, either, because I didn’t want to disturb the arrangement of the sea grasses, which you see just as I found them. The delicate tracery of dark pattern in the sand is pretty, too, don’t you think?
Edges are important: in books, garments, water, groups, art, skiing, marketing, and personality.
As I typed ‘marketing,’ I thought “Ugh.” But then, almost everything is marketed. It’s just a fact, if perhaps an unfortunate one. How could we not have marketing? What would that mean? Can you think of anything that isn’t marketed — religion, politics, goods and services, even love? Sigh.
Philosophy aside, the edges of the wave are so thick and wonderful! It looks a bit like tissue or fabric or cotton fluff that’s been squinched so that the edges are thickened.