Thursday, April 14, 2011

Red tulips finally show color;
1st blooms from red bud seedling

The Flash Bus Tour and unplanned downtown Indianapolis reflections and patterns shoot Tuesday weren't the only photographic highlights of the day. When I returned home from those experiences, I was delighted to note that the red tulips in my fence-line garden had bloomed. The cool temperatures were keeping the petals close together; there wasn't an open-bloom show yet. But beams from a 6:15 p.m. sun hit the blooms at just the right angle to present some brilliant red hues.

The light orange tulips in my back circular garden look like they're a day or two away from opening. The same kind of light-orange tulips in the front garden may take a day or so more than that; they don't get the same amount of sunshine that the bulbs in the backyard get, so it normally takes them longer to show, so I'm not surprised about that.

These are shots of the red tulips from Tuesday evening. I'll be back with shots of them fully opened when that happens, presuming I can do so before a wicked storm comes through and shreds the petals.

And ... on top of the red tulips giving me their first show of color, Tuesday also proved to be the first day my now 3-year-old red bud tree, in the circular garden, has sprouted flowers and blooms. The conception of this tree is a first for me. For the past five years, I've spent a lot of time pulling countless seedlings of red bud that planted themselves helter-skelter after floating into my yard from my next door neighbor's red buds. Three years ago, I stopped short of pulling one particular seedling that was in the circular garden. Having been without backyard shade since losing a nice-sized tree to disease a good 10-12 years ago, I decided to leave that seedling alone and see how it would fare, leaving it to nature to decide whether it lived or died. It's withstood a lot, and seems very strong. It's now taller than me, too, so ... barring any unforeseen health hazards, it appears it's here to stay.

I like the fact that the red bud, in a way, reconnects me to the early years of my career in journalism -- and photography. Not long after graduating college, I edited a weekly newspaper in Columbus, Wis., which calls itself the Red Bud City. I was there for only one spring, but I remember the beautiful array of red buds lining Dickison Boulevard in that town. Even though I took most of the pictures for the Columbus Journal-Republican (now just the Journal), paper then, I wasn't nearly the photo fanatic I am now, so I didn't take any images of those red buds.


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