Tuesday, August 31, 2010
In spring, young deer usually wander around my backyard looking for food, but this summer has been so hot and dry that I've seen them drinking from our pond. The water level is so low now that a whole family of deer can walk along the inside edge of the pond. Now a few months later, I'm sometimes surprised to discover a young deer has grown into a buck. The deer are cute and always stare at us, but I hate them for eating my beautiful flowers, plants and young trees.
Friday, August 27, 2010
When the zinnias started to grow from seeds, I didn't know a sunflower was also mixed in there. Then I found out my ikebana classmate Cindy, who gave me the seeds, might have mixed the sunflower in with the rest. So this was a big surprise, especially its special color.
This giant sunflower is 14 inches in width and 7 feet tall. Huge! Only two survived though, the deer ate all my other young plants. The orange sunflower below is 6 inches in width and 4 feet tall.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Praying mantis on the Marigold plants.
Can you see a bee in the center of this beautiful dahlia? (click for larger view)
I caught a few snapshots of butterflies on zinnias and tramp vine flowers, but I just can't catch the hummingbirds we have in our backyard, they do not stay still like these butterflies.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Peonies are one of the most popular perennials. If planted properly, they will bloom faithfully every spring. Tree peonies open earliest, at least two weeks before others. Peonies appear in all colors except blue. So far this is my collection of peonies.
P.S. Because we won't be having ikebana classes in September and my orchids usually bloom the least this time of year, so I am publishing my Garden Series.
Monday, August 23, 2010
The Bucks County Orchid Society (BCOS) gave out 2009 to 2010 show table awards for windowsill grower and green house grower at this past May's year-end banquet. I'm proud of this recognition, which shows my day to day effort, patience, and love. BCOS's new season begins in September.
Zygonisia Cynosure "Blue Birds"
I bought this young plant from last fall's (9/2009) potting party. I didn't expect it to bloom this year but it did in early July, which was a pleasant surprise.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Our teacher Ms. Lin gave a brief talk about ikebana flower arranging.
Every second Friday, the Indian Vally Public Library (Montgomery County) hosts a special event. On August 13th, our teacher Ms. Lin held a program to commemorate her daughter's life (she passed away at the age of 13 and was a big bookworm). Ms. Lin collected, donated and contributed a lot of books related to Asian culture to the library in honor of her beloved daughter.
Beside Ms. Lin's ikebana flower arrangement demo, her students' ikebana arrangements were on display. Also, a fellow student Ms. Tsai hosted a tea ceremony ("How to make good tea? Just put your heart in it") and our friend Ms. Lu gave a calligraphy demo. This was an enjoyable evening everybody will remember.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
I have prepared this branches which I painted it black some time ago. I know some day I can use it for my ikebana. As seen here, I arranged the stems of the branches pointed either upward or downward plus the combination of black-eye Susan, black branches and white ceramic vase. To me it looks beautiful!
This subject is to make a composition of surfaces, by gathering the plant materials to create the massing of lines. It's difficult to use just a small amount of plants, so I cut a bunch of Bulrush from wild field of my back yard. To create more dimensional form and to look more interesting, I bent some of Bulrush and added a single black-eye Susan to complete this composition.