for the record – first beefsteak of 2018!

“Big Brandy”



hot flowers in bright sun

After unsuccessfully trying to take pictures of birds through trees while camping last week, I decided I need to learn how to use my camera on something other than the auto setting!  Since it was super sunny today, I played with aperture and took pictures of hot coloured flowers in my Edmonton garden. I wasn’t that adventurous and just left the ISO setting on ‘auto’ – gotta start somewhere!!  And I didn’t use any tools, filters, reflectors or post-processing besides cropping them, just so I could see what the differences were.

Below: Red poppy in front of heliopsis in the Front Courtyard Garden.  Left photo was taken at f/4, hence the blurry background.  Right photo was taken at f/11.  No noticeable difference in colours.  Both at ISO 100.


Below: Paprika rose in front of blue sea holly in the Front Courtyard Garden.  Oops, left photo at f/5 has too short a depth of field!  But the colour is richer than the right one, which was taken at f/11.  On the right, the camera adjusted to ISO 160.


Below: Daylily ‘Frans Hals’ in the Sunset Garden.  Taken at f/4, ISO 100.


Below:  Another daylily in front of scarlet runner beans and kale in the veggie garden.  Left to right: f/4 with the blurriest background, and no real difference between f/9 and f/11.  All ISO 100.


Below: Some beautiful begonias in a pot in the side garden, taken at f/11, which I can see is probably the safest if I want everything in focus! This was actually in the shade and the camera adjusted to ISO 400.


Below: On the other hand, I do like this “portrait” of a canna lily better taken at f/4, on the left, because the veronica in the background is more out of focus than at f/11. Both ISO 100.


Well, there you have it. Now I’m waiting for clouds.


2018 garden project complete: New England, the veggie garden

The veggie garden area at my old house in Calgary was called ‘England’, so this one in my new-to-me Edmonton backyard is, of course, ‘New England’!!


Last year I planned out the raised bed size,


and then in the winter I decided on a round lawn in front of it, with a little sitting area where the evening sun lasts longest:


I’m very happy with it!  Raised beds make a veggie garden much easier to maintain, and less grass also makes me happy.  The dark mulch also helps the shape of the lawn stand out better.  Here’s one more photo a little closer in: