Spring

Early this morning, I saw a pair of courting doves sitting on the fence outside my screened porch.  Stealthy hunter that I am, I sneaked out behind the pergola where I could get a bead on them with the camera.  Of course, they saw me in my bright pink robe and sailed away.  I only got one quick shot of them from my hiding place.

On fence

When I looked down, I discovered a couple of blossoms on the Morea Iris hiding in the foliage.  I was rewarded after all for getting my wool house shoes wet.  Unless I walk around the garden often, I miss seeing these blossoms since they are hidden by the wall of the pergola.  I don’t spend much time outside in the cooler weather.

Grass Lily vignette

Last spring, I took a walk around the garden and posted a number of photographs of the blooming trees and plants.  During the summer, I bored you to death with photographs of Mr. Anole and the Trumpet Vine.  I have a love-hate relationship with the Trumpet Vine, as you know.  She’s still as bare as she was all winter, but I spied blossoms on a Texas Mountain Laurel.  I didn’t know that it was blooming too.  The Laurel is a small evergreen tree that is attractive for landscape plantings, but the leaves, blossoms and seeds are poisonous to humans and animals.  This one is outside the fences and away from the areas where the dogs play.

Mountain Laurel

As I walked around the house, I noticed what is supp0sed to be a variegated Pittsporum bush.  There was only one leaf cluster that wasn’t solid green.  I suppose it has reverted to its original un-variegated state.  At first glance, I thought it was a flower.  The poor thing looked a little worse for wear from the winter, but it is forming leaf new buds in the center in a valiant effort to spruce up a bit for spring, I suppose.

Pittisporum

Pintas are attractive from a distance, but they don’t appeal to me.  I suppose I don’t like the color.  I did a number on this lady with what may be questionable results, but she does look a little more interesting to me this way.  I suppose I should be nicer to the Pintas since they do blossom during mild winters.

Pinta

As I walked back toward the porch, I saw the couple chatting on the roof of the kids’ house next door.  Perhaps, it was a different couple.  I am happy to see them returning from their winter migration.  I think they fly further south to the Texas Valley or into Mexico for the winter.  They will begin to refurbish their nests in our porch gutters soon, and we will be treated to the ritual of the babies’ learning to fly again this year.

Doves Pair_cropped

97 Comments on “Spring

  1. The blooms are really beautiful. This is the reason why I enjoy Spring (at least one of them – I also enjoy the warmer temperatures 🙂 )

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    • Thanks, Colline. I was thinking about you the other day! Thanks for the visit. Yes, I am anxiously waiting for my Trumpet vine to grow enough to bloom! I hope everything is good with you! 🙂

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      • All is going well – too busy though. I realised I have been missing your posts as I am not blogging every day at the moment. Hope that will change soon as I miss connecting with everyone.
        Have a good day today George.

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  2. George–It’s snowing here in S. E. Ohio, so your stunning spring pictures are oh so welcome! THANKS for visiting my “pun-ny” photoblog and leaving several “likes.”
    –John R.

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    • Hi, Luciana! Glad you enjoyed our miniscule walk. I just read a really nice interview that you did on the new book. Congratulations! You’re doing very well with your publishing these days. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

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      • Thank you. Getting ready for the next launch. Still trying to get a handle on the marketing side of this business. Crazy.
        Take care George 🙂

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  3. I’ve been busy doing life things, and it’s so nice to return to your blog to catch up. I needed a little blast of spring – our winter arrived late this year and doesn’t seem to want to go away, so it was nice to see the color popping out from your post. Loved the doves in the first picture, very tender. Romantic!

    elisa

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    • Hi, Elisa! I’ve been seeing your weather in Atlanta. It’s been unusually warm here this winter. I didn’t have to cover my pygmy date palms even once. Do you have a webcam? Do you belong to Google+? We could talk sometime if you do. Thanks for coming by. You know how I grin when I see you! 🙂

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      • Hi again! I’m sorry to say that I don’t have a webcam….yet! I’m operating on my dated, clunky iMac, but I’ve been shopping for a new one. I just have to organize my files on this one so I can transfer. Sounds a little frightening! As soon as I get that webcam I’ll be stalking you. You’ll finally get to see what a goofball I am!
        Have a great weekend,
        Elisa

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  4. It is so nice to read everybody’s blog after my overly extended blog vacation.Beautiful Pictures.I love spring and all its colours(Well I live in Karachi and it’s summer all year 🙂
    P.S. George did you really get the Mad cow or was it some part of American humour that I did’nt get?
    Happy sunny season 🙂
    Planet weird awaits you 🙂

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    • The mad cow reference is a joke. The Star Trek hero, William Shatner, played a lawyer on the TV series, “Boston Legal”, for several years. His character was developing Alzheimer’s Disease and couldn’t remember things so he always said, “It’s the Mad Cow” to explain whatever he forgot. Bizarre kind of joke that really isn’t funny if you think about people who really do have the disease.

      Thank you for the visit and your kind comment. It’s good to see a pretty bright-colored Gravatar! You bring the sunshine with you, I think. I will have to transport myself to Karachi to soak up some warm sunshine! 🙂

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      • So nobody is ill 😀 Thank God for that 🙂
        The Gravtar is a painting by Chugtai.Just Google him and you’ll see some fabulous artwork.
        Yeah Karachi is colourful place to be..I am sure you’ll love it

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  5. Hi George,
    Your close-ups are so beautiful. My favorite shot is the last one, with the two doves on the roof–almost the same color as the shingles. So striking!

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    • I’m glad you like the doves. I’m playing with the NIC Efex filters. I have no idea what I’m doing. I hope spring is on her way to my house. I don’t do winter very well since we have no snow and mostly drab days here with just enough cold to make me complain! Good to see you. I always wonder what adventure you’re planning next! I have to nose around your place to discover it. 🙂 Thank you for coming to see me!

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  6. A beautiful post, George, despite all your unnecessary apologies. I watch the doves all the time, but often the irritate me, and I miss the romance. Still, Nechama shows unflagging interest. The Morea Iris is especially beautiful. Altogether a pleasure.

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    • Hello, Shimon. Don’t you dare close the comments on your last post before I get there! 🙂
      Glad you liked the post. There isn’t much going on here for me to photograph. Perhaps, I am not seeing it, huh? Nechama appreciates the entertainment. Me too. It would be fun to watch Nechama watch the doves. I am very uncertain about the programs that I am trying to use. I suppose I should not post anything that I am unsure about. Yes? Thanks for dropping in. I am pleased when I see you at my place. Always.

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  7. Another wonderful photo essay. Or are they ‘photo strolls’? when i read these, i almost feel as though we’re having coffee and taking a walk through your garden. Nice slippers, by the way…

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    • Well, Daisy, I haven’t trudged on over to your place lately. I’m fragmented in the head. How do you organize your visits? You’ve got it together, I know. I’m glad you came by to stroll in the wet dew with me. It’s kinda’ cold here for old bones. I wear wool socks and wool shoes to keep my creaky feet warm. Thanks! 🙂

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    • Hi, WH. I swear I’m gonna’ fire up the old bones and venture out to find something a little more interesting than an iris as soon as the sun shines enough to suit me! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. I’m glad you went out in your house shoes – that shot of the Morea Iris is just wonderful! I really enjoy the visits to your garden.

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    • Thank you, Richard, I’m glad you like my little corner. I am playing with some NIX plug-ins and I am not at all convinced that I am not making a total fool of myself. However, I am shameless, as you know. 😉 I smiled today when a young girl whom I knew as an infant asked for a print of that iris. I haven’t seen her since she grew up and married. Now, that’s really sweet.

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  9. Love the Morea Iris. One of my favourite flowers. We have two different species in our yard that are in bloom at the moment. They are so delicately and beautifully constructed by nature. Their artistic colouring fascinates me 🙂

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    • I have the little pansy-faced ones too. I never knew these flowers until my daughter incorporated them into the landscape plan for the new house. I like them too. BTW, I absolutely love your gravatar. I have a photo of my grandson when he was about three years old. He is doing the same thing. We call the photo “Oh!, My Aching Head!” Yes, every time I see one of those little blossoms, I am startled by the intricate form and color. So many fascinating things living all around us. I think I found new eyes as I grew old. Thanks for dropping in, Richard.

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  10. Enjoyed your photos very much, George. There is no end to how beautiful nature can be. I love the doves, too. We have at least three different kinds here in Arizona. I have been watching a roadrunner around here lately. All the birds sound the alarm when they are around. I hope to hear the Great Horned Owl again hooting on the roof.

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    • My son-in-law has photographed several roadrunners. I moved here in 1976 and have seen only one roadrunner in all of that time. I saw him running along the highway years ago and just about wrecked my car gaping at him. I couldn’t believe I had just seen the roadrunner of cartoon legend! Dou Dou makes clay birds (WordPress blogger). I saw a roadrunner on her sales page and immediately bought him! I love the doves. They are such gentle creatures. They return to their nests on our porches every year and just smile down at us as we walk underneath them. Watching the babies fledge is especially nice. The white-wings and mourning doves sound wonderful. If I had a Great Horned Owl hooting on my roof, I’d be unbelievably excited. I love owls. Some of their faces almost look human. Thanks for dropping by!

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    • Thank you … uh… I can’t address you as “67paintings”. Now, you’re gonna have to tell me your name. 😉
      I keep thinking about you strumming your guitar. You are making such introspective, gentle and lovely music. I have to investigate the rest of your blog. There must be something amazing there in the title. Thanks you for visiting my little corner.

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  11. Thanks for sharing a glimpse of spring! I’m waiting for her with open arem 🙂
    Love the bright colors on the flowers!

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    • Thanks, RoSy. I am impatient for spring too. I’ve really enjoyed your snow photographs, but I know you are ready for the snow to go home!

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    • You’ve had your share of blizzards this winter! I don’t think I could manage that much snow or the cold. Thanks for dropping by, Gail.

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    • Hi, Christina! I just scrolled through many of your post photographs. I like your eye. And I very much like the processing of the monochromes. I have to come back to read the stories. Thank you for visiting. I’m happy that you liked my flowers. 🙂

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    • Yes, I’m often afraid I’m going to step into a hole and disappear. I pay little attention to where my feet are anyway. I have stood out under the palms to catch the light and felt my feet and legs being eaten by mosquitoes. I wonder if professional photographers don’t plan for such situations. 🙂 I suspect that they do. Thanks for dropping by, Lorna. 🙂

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  12. Love the iris blossoms George. Haven’t seen one since we moved from the hills. The dove babies are surely something to look forward to 🙂

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    • Thanks, Madhu. I never had these “grass” iris before. Kelli incorporated them into the landscaping plan for the new house. I didn’t appreciate the tall green grass leaves until the plants bloomed. They are fascinating little blossoms. I can hardly keep abreast of where you are and what your latest adventures are! 🙂 Thanks for dropping by. I love to see your beautiful face when it pops up here in my little corner!

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  13. What a wonderful glimpse into your back yard again! You captured the doves just right on the fence. I enjoy seeing them here too. And I could almost smell the mountain laurel – one of my favorites. Yes, spring has come early. Great shots as usual!

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    • Texas Mountain Laurel is different from that in North Carolina. It grows into a small tree that really is nice in landscaping since it is evergreen and takes up little surface space. I hardly notice the blossoms because of the tree’s location, but I like the way they smell too. Everything is putting on new growth. I hope we don’t have an unexpected freeze. I love it when the doves come back and spring gets into full swing here. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

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    • I’m glad you enjoyed the few blossoms that are showing themselves even against the cold mornings. Spring is on her way, and that makes me happy. Thank you for stopping by! 🙂

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    • I just revisited some of your still life photographs. They amaze me! I really am going to attempt some myself. Thanks for the visit! 🙂

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        • You are just too kind. Thank you very much. Your still life photos remind me of Maurice Sapiro’s old photos from the fifties and sixties. Both remind me of the Old Master paintings, of course. You are good, you know. 🙂

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  14. So happy to see these signs of spring. I love the rich color of that Mountaln Laurel. Our snow drops have come up in our garden. It’s been another strangely mild winter.

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    • It’s been very mild here too. We had mountain laurel in NC, but it was a different variety. I don’t see a lot of it here, but it is a nice little tree. I am not familiar with snow drops??

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  15. WOW George, I absolutely love the Morea Iris blossom. And the doves are gorgeous, definitely worth the wet house shoes.

    Here in San Antonio we’ve been having very spring-like weather, but today it’s a bit cold and dreary. I’ll appreciate it though, I know the heat will be here soon enough.

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    • Yes! The heat will be murder soon enough. I keep telling myself that while I whine about the cold wind and the wet stuff. My sister told me that this blossom is not on a Morea Iris. What do I know? I call all of them “grass lilies”. The Morea is the one with the little “pansy-faced” blossoms. Glad you liked it. I’m playing with the NIC Efex Color plug-in and have no idea what I’m doing! Thanks!

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  16. WOW! These are all great shots, dear George, I loved them, but especially in the first one, birds fascinated me. Thank you dear, have a nice day, love, nia

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    • Thank you, Nia. You have the Eurasian Collared Dove in Turkey along with the Turtle Dove (of the Twelve Days of Christmas fame) in Turkey. I think the Collared Dove originated there and only spread to Asia and finally over Europe later. The Turtle Dove is nearing extinction in England. I love the doves because they are so pretty and sing so beautifully. We used to have two Mourning Doves in a house attached to a large glass door at our old house. We could see them and hear them. They would lie in our hands on their backs. Really sweet domesticated doves. They live a long time in captivity. Thanks for stopping in for a visit! 🙂

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  17. We once had a pair nesting in our apartment in a window box 6 floors up. A few years later there was a veritable convention of more than 20 birds meeting up on our deck early one morning. Once they feel safe they hang around. It’s great.

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    • They were probably mourning doves? I think that’s what I recall having seen in my childhood in NC. I love the cooing sound. Of the 300 different species of doves, they all make different sounds. Some are croaks like frogs and some are chirps. The white-wing doves have a loud and very melodious sound as do the mourning doves. How I would love to have your flock visit me in the mornings! Thanks for the visit, Victor!

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  18. I just WISH our yard would begin to show signs of spring…it’s 32 degrees outside now so it’s going to be a while. Your yard has wonderful things for great photographs. I can’t resist pointing out that the picture is not Morea Iris, though. They’re the ones with little “faces” and grass-like foliage. The iris in the photo is very nice, whatever it is!

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    • We certainly don’t have much here either. Kelli told me the iris is Morea. What do I know? It’s all tall grass to me. 🙂 I do have some of the little “face” ones though.

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  19. Nice images and a pleasant tour through your early spring garden. You’re lucky to be treated to even this little bit of color – we’re still dark and damp here in PA. The shot of the Iris is really nice … shallow depth works nicely. Glad you were out with the camera again. Have a great day. D

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    • Do you know that I cannot recall you name? Can you imagine? Yep, I’m losing it! 🙂 The darkness, I could endure. It’s the dampness that really gets to me. It is very humid here which makes the heat and the cold feel worse. There is very little blooming here. I had to search for something. This is pretty boring, but I am playing with the Efex color plug-in for Ps so I decided to post. I have to encourage myself to get out of the house and find something more interesting to talk about, I think. 😉 Thanks for dropping in.

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      • It’s ‘Dave,’ and you’re not losing it … we all forget stuff. Once, when asked during polite conversation here at work what my office number was … I totally forgot – couldn’t come up with it for the life of me – can you imagine! We all have lapses from time-to-time … totally normal! ” … I am playing with the Efex color plug-in for Ps …” WOW! You’ve really taken off, I’m impressed. I’ve tried the watered down version of Ps called Lightroom …. and it’s been slow going. On another front … I guess I won’t be moving to Texas anytime soon … I don’t mind heat but I really hate humidity! You have my sympathy! Keep up the great photo work … get out there today for a walk and bring the camera along. I await the results. Dave

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    • Thanks, Sylvia. Just went with you to Disney. What fun. I always love your photographs, especially that you include family. Not many bloggers do that. It makes your work feel good to me. 🙂

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    • Thank you very much. I no longer go to my office so I am free to walk about at any time of the day or night. I have time to look at something all day if I choose. That makes me very happy and content. You are correct in all that you say on your blog. We would do well to see as children again.

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    • Yoyo, where are you? I forgot. I love the tones in your photographs. They are singularly your own. Glad you liked my iris. I’m playing with Color Efex, the NIC software plug-in, and I have no earthly idea what I’m doing! 🙂

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      • Haha… bet whatever you are doing is great – coz the pictures are great, the posts are great & you are the most favorite blogger 😀 happy to know you liked my photographs.

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    • Thank you, Andrea. I’m glad you liked the flowers. I just suggested a collaboration between you and 67 Paintings when I read your poem and his music piece. Each is wonderful, but I would like very much to see them together in a collaborative post. 🙂

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    • Well, thank you very much, Scott. I am playing with Photoshop and the NIC Efex plug-ins. I am happy that the photo passes muster with you since your photographs are so beautifully seen, framed and processed that I am feeling a little intimidated here. 🙂 I appreciate your mention of the second one because I had reservations about doing that much processing. Thanks for your encouragement!

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    • Well, you are just too kind! Thank you very much for coming to visit. I will most certainly return the visit. Anybody who thinks my little stories are nice is my kind of people! Bless you, and come back anytime. You made me smile! 🙂

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  20. When I see and hear the doves cooing and wooing each other I am transported back in time to my Grandmother’s house where my younger sister and I would be awakened most mornings by their sweet serenades. Thanks for another colourful trip around your lovely garden.

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    • You are too kind, JS. I promised to visit at the last post. I am getting old and senile, I think. I love doves too. The ones I remember are the same as yours, but since there are 300 species of doves, the cooing that we remember must have been from the Mourning Dove since it is the most commonly seen in North America. The ones here are white-wings who have a wonderful song and are the biggest doves in my part of the world. The Inca Dove is a little dove that is most common in the Southwest now. The very small doves are the Common Ground Doves who chirp. Every dove species has its own sound. 🙂 Thanks for dropping in to visit!

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    • Thank you very much, JM. This was a kind of boring post, but I am playing with my new software. I will get my old bones out to find something more interesting, I promise! 🙂

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