Category Archives: nature

Vintage landscape: Villa Doria Pamphili

Italian villaVilla Doria-Pamphili and parterre in the Monteverde section of Rome, Italy, in the summer of 1925. Photo by Frances Benjamin Johnston via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Today, the 17th c. Villa Doria Pamphili is part of the largest landscaped public park in Rome.

Click the photo for a better view. I like the fountain at the bottom on the left.

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Life in gardens: bridal voyage

Bridal couple, Library of Congress

“Bridal pair starting on life’s voyage,” 1876, by Mrs. A. B. Mason, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

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Streifzug 1: sunflowers

Streifzug means ‘foray,’ ‘ brief survey,’ or ‘ramble’ (if my online German/English dictionary does not deceive me).

Sunflowers.These photos are from yesterday’s ramble or, more specifically, bike ride.

"Only paid-for flowers make friends."The sign says, “Only paid-for flowers make friends.” Sonnenblumen are sunflowers. These are not quite open yet.

I will go back in a week or so to cut a few.

I will go back in a week or so to cut a few.

Blumen Selbt Schneiden or ‘cut your own flowers’ signs — with honor-system money boxes — are not uncommon sights alongside fields in the Stuttgart area. These long rows were beside a walking/biking/farm access path near our neighborhood.

(On the same ride, I also passed a house with a sidewalk shelf of already cut flowers in jars and a coin box.)

I don't know the name of these purple flowers.

I don’t know the name of these purple flowers.

The fields around the rows of cut-your-own flowers are filled with wheat, beans, corn, and grass for hay.

But the row was absolutely filled with bees.

But hundreds of bees were loving them.

Also, as you can see, our weather has much improved since Wednesday.  Temperatures are now well into the seventies.
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Right now — at midmorning in Stuttgart — it’s 59°F.  Our high today is predicted to be only 69°,with all-day clouds and intermittent rain.

It’s been this way since last week, and it looks like summer will not return until next Wednesday.

But yesterday about 5:30 p.m., I caught a few minutes of sun shining through my little arrangement of miniature roses, spirea, and wild strawberries.

An hour later, it was raining.

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Life in gardens: summer moonlight

Under the moon, Library of Congress“Yūgao dana nōryō zu” (cooling beneath an evening glory canopy), 1880s, a woodcut print by Yoshitoshi Taiso, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

The image “shows a couple in the country with a child and a teapot, sitting on a mat beneath a trellis covered with yūgao vines, enjoying the full moon,” according to the Library’s online catalogue.

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