Presidential Birds

What do Lincoln’s Sparrow and Wilson’s Warbler have in common? Do you know? Can you guess? You’re right—they were not named after presidents. However, since they do share a last name with a former president, it seems appropriate to learn about this Lincoln and this Wilson on President’s Day.

Lincoln's Sparrow_EchoLake-MtEvans_CO_LAH_5987

Lincoln’s Sparrow is a cute little bird. Its brown feathers are suffused with a coppery tint. (I use the copper color as a handy mnemonic—coppery bird, copper penny sporting a profile of Lincoln.)

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Gear for Garden Photography

8x10 Dahlia_BellevueBG-WA_LAH_6725_filteredIf you read last month’s post, you now know why you’re taking garden photos. The next question is, what kind of camera do you need? Cameras range from simple point-and-shoot models to the camera in your phone to professional DSLRs. While there’s a lot of truth that you get what you pay for, all of them take photos.

At least to start with, use the camera you have. Yes, you’ll have more creative latitude with extra lenses, camera features, and other equipment, but keep in mind that most important part of the process is the photographer. Continue reading

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Monogamous Swans?

Trumpeter Swans_CamasNWR-ID_LAH_9097

It sounds so romantic, the idea that swans mate for life. If one dies, its mate also dies—of a broken heart. How faithful. How tragic. How so not true.

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February Bird Quiz: Uncropped Photo

If you were stymied on Monday, now can you name this bird? The photo was taken at Bosque del Apache NWR in New Mexico, in January. The answer will appear at the end of next Monday’s post.

BosquedelApacheNWR-NM_LAH_9211f

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In Praise of Petunias

 

Petunias @SantaFeGreenhouses 2008jun28 LAH 186

Mention petunias among a group of passionate gardeners and you often get sneers. After all, they’re so… common! Even non-gardeners grow petunias. Those with greener thumbs usually aspire to more exotic flowers. But there’s a reason petunias are so popular among the casual gardening crowd. In fact, there are a number of reasons.

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February Bird Quiz

Can you name this bird? The photo was taken in New Mexico in January. I will post the uncropped photo on Saturday, giving you one more chance to identify this bird. The answer will appear at the end of next Monday’s post.

02_9211f

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Volunteer Park Conservatory

Conservatory - VolunteerPark-Seattle-WA_LAH_0443I just spent two weeks in western Washington visiting my daughter and her family—two weeks of giggles, bedtime stories, and stomping in the puddles left by Seattle’s incessant rain. While my focus was on our granddaughters, I couldn’t help but feast my soul on all the green—in mid-winter! Broadleaf evergreens such as rhododendrons, still-verdant lawns, even the emerald moss on the roof were all a welcome respite from Colorado’s winter browns. The only problem was that I had to get wet to enjoy it all. That’s why we planned a visit to the Volunteer Park Conservatory, located on Capitol Hill in Seattle.

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