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Ruby Tuesday – More From The Greenhouses of Smith College! February 1, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in macro photos, Ruby Tuesday!.
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Here are a couple more shots from the Smith College greenhouses.  The skies were dark and I was shooting hand-held, with high ISOs and long exposures, but a couple of things did come out:

This complex blossom has some ruby bits:

Sorry, I didn’t get its name.

And this little beauty, perhaps a red agave?

I’m hoping to get back there early in the day, maybe even tomorrow, with a tripod and bag of lenses; if I do, you’ll be the first to know.

Thanks to Mary over at Work of the Poet for this Rubilicious meme!

The Smith College Greenhouses. January 31, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
Tags: , , ,

This time of year in Massachusetts can be pretty bleak.  We have days on end when the sun doesn’t actually make it through the clouds and the weather, and the palette is nothing but gray.

So it’s really cool that there are places like the Smith College greenhouses.  At this time of year they’re preparing for their spring “Bulb Show,” a lillie-fest that’s hard to beat.

But right now, their perennial collection goes on, and some of it is flowering as we speak.

Here are a few of the blossoms I passed as I wandered the 18 or so rooms of this beautiful subtropical oasis in a New England winter:

It’s a feast of primary colors, that one yellow, this one red:

And a blue one which I used to know the name of:

These were taken in the late afternoon, and as it was dependably gray, the light was pretty low and the (hand-held) exposures were long.  The resulting “softness” of these shots might be deemed poor technique, but if you think of them as “flower porn,” you’ll appreciate the softening of the harsh reality of this dehumanizing trade.

Ahem.  Just making fun of myself there.

And there were some more complicated flowers there too, both in form and in palette, like the orchids:

…some soft and gentle, others more assertive:

Pardon my anthropomorphism, but this is the most sexually explicit plant I have ever seen.  It has a scrotum, a vagina, lots of pink bits, some short black hairs, and just when you were starting to think it was hot,  a phalanx of warts of indeterminate origin.

Thankfully, the Greenhouse Credo constrains us to “Look, but don’t touch.”

Expect more photos from these greenhouses in the future; there’s a lot going on there, and it changes weekly.