A Backyard Visitor

We keep an informal backyard bird list and this week a new year bird showed up to investigate our fuchsia out front and our garden in the back. We’ve got lots of flowers in bloom and it seems like this immature Rufous Hummingbird (Selasphorus rufus) was stopping in for a quick feed. Our backyard visitor, a Rufous Hummingbird (Selasphorus rufus) …

Garden Mustards

Kale (Brassica oleracea) flowers are quite beautiful. A couple of days ago I found some Field Mustard (Brassica campestris) down by the Courtenay Estuary and in photographing the plant I got to thinking how similar the flowers looked to the flowers on the kale (Brassica oleracea) that overwintered in our backyard garden. At this time of year the kale have …

It’s Satinflower Show Time!

Don't let the rain stop you – Satinflowers (Olsynium douglasii) look splendid with a few drops of water on the petals. Early spring on Vancouver Island means it’s time to lace on the hiking boots and head out to see the Satinflower (Olsynium douglasii) show. From mid-February to early April this tiny member of the Iris (Iridaceae) family dots the …

A Tale of Two Tansies

Common Tansy | Tanacetum vulgare Up at Paradise Meadows today I had the (unfortunate?) opportunity to photograph some common tansy (Tanacetum vulgare) growing along the roadside. Common tansy is an invasive perennial that grows in disturbed places, road edges and stream banks. WeedsBC reports that the common tansy is problematic especially in areas like interior BC so it was disconcerting …

Cow Parsnip Seeds

Cow Parsnip | Heracleum maximum While out on a family walk at Rosewall Creek Provincial Park south of Fanny Bay on Vancouver Island we discovered a small patch of Cow Parsnip (Heracleum maximum). Some caution is advised with this plant due to the furanocoumarins in the outer skin that can cause skin irritation when handled by people who are sensitive …

Awesome Asters

Aster sp. This wonderful seed-head was one of many in a field full of tall weedy dandelion like asters in front of the old Hamilton Mac Laing house in Comox. Unfortunately my 2 year-old son only allowed me to take a couple of photographs before it was time to move on!

Back in the Garden

With two young children it’s often difficult to get out to a new location to photograph. As a result, I usually have to revisit a location that I’ve photographed before – the challenge then becomes how to create new images with the same subjects. Taking the time to look at details, repositioning the camera and playing with depth of field …

Summer on the Wane in the Sub-alpine

Menzies’ Burnet | Sanquisorba menziesii Subalpine Daisy | Erigeron peregrinus The last two days up at Paradise Meadows (located in Strathcona Provincial Park, BC) have definitely had a hint of the fall in the air. While this makes for good hiking weather (cool but not cold) it’s also a sign that the late summer bloom is nearly done and that …

What Wasp is That?

I spent some time this week in my mother-in-law’s garden photographing wasps, bees and other insects but am finding it challenging to identify them. These wasps were unconcerned about me being close to them so I was able to get some good photographs of these fascinating insects. I’m working on identifying conclusively the wasps/insects pictured below. The photographs were taken …