Phlowers & Photograph – Rose of Sharon

My Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus) photograph is part of Cee’s Flower of the Day Challenge.

Today is an overcast day in southern New Jersey…again. We’ve had a very wet summer and it looks like the upcoming Autumn season might bring the same. When I take a walk a little later in the morning, I will be sure and grab my camera to take along. I have found grey days create an amazing background for skyline photographs. The moisture in the air forms a screen of sorts, and shadows magically appear within the mistiness surrounding the plant. You can see this effect in the unretouched photo above.

A few years ago a generous friend sent me seeds from her Rose of Sharon bush. This sweet little tree is the result. I grew it in the house for quite a while, and then, when I felt it was hardy enough, planted it outdoors. It has thrived this summer and grown to about three feet tall. Plants given to me by friends always bring me great joy.

The leaves of the Rose of Sharon are glossy and green and don’t appear to be tempting to many garden pests. Hooray. Thanks again to the kind lady who sent me these seeds. You can find excellent growing and pruning tips for Rose of Sharon at The Spruce.

These photographs are part of Skywatch Friday. Thanks for stopping by today.

Phlower – Hibiscus/Unlikely Sources

Several of my favorite plants have been found in the unlikeliest places. I discovered this beautiful hibiscus for sale in a local deli. It wasn’t blooming when I bought it; I assumed it would have the appearance of a typical garden shop hibiscus. What a surprise awaited me when the multi-hued double petals opened for the first time. In the Autumn, I will bring the plant indoors and try to keep it alive and blooming for years. At some point I know I will have to capture this flower in watercolor.

This beautiful bloom is part of Cee’s Flower of the Day.

Painting – Wetcanvas The Floral/Botanical February 2014 Project

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This gorgeous, copyright free, macro photograph, shared by al22 in the WetCanvas Reference Library, is February’s Floral/Botanical challenge. The beauty of this flower is almost indescribable. It’s easier to just say, “Ahhh…” than try to put what you feel into words. Take a look at the link I’m including to this challenge. Better yet, peruse the whole WetCanvas website. This is one of the best sites on the web for artists of all kinds.

WetCanvas The Floral/Botanical February 2014 Project

The floral/botanical challenge will have postings of the artist’s paintings on the 25th of the month.

If still life is more to your liking, take a look at the Watercolor Studio challenge for this month. This photograph is also copyright free and uploaded to the library by JEFrantz.

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You can find this challenge here: Watercolor Studio February 2014 Challenge

Bookmark the Wetcanvas Studio challenge, check back over the course of the month and see the different renderings of the artists who take part. Better yet, join WetCanvas and give it a try yourself.

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Place and Plants – Jamaican Foliage and Flowers

Jamaica has a gorgeous array of plant life. Here is a beautiful example of a bromeliad.

Bougainvillea

Hibiscus

Not sure of variety, perhaps a type of canna.

Croton

Loved, loved, loved this terrific foliage plant. I am trying to identify it, and hopefully find a tropical plant nursery here in the states and buy one for home. These grow large in the tropics and this one was actually part of a hedge. (I have since found out the name of this lovely bush/shrub/tree…it is called a Sea Grape, I am going to be able to order some seeds and try to grow my own. Oh Happy Day!)

Palms