Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Bird of Paradise
Strelitzia reginae
(stre-LITZ-ee-uh) (ree-JIN-ay-ee)

This picture was taken at a friend’s greenhouse last winter. I was so happy to see it and getting a good photo was a bonus. Over the next week I thought I would feature a couple of images from a photography exhibit I have this month. I ended up putting up 17-framed pictures. No sales yet but that is okay. I did get an email saying that the person had enjoyed the pictures. I never know what to pictures to hang. My favorites are not always the ones others like. I was going to take only pictures I have sold before but where’s the adventure in that? When all is said and done I am just happy to have people look and comment on my photography. It is a powerful thing for me when I start mixing two things I have a deep passion for together. I am lucky in that way.

What can you say about Bird of Paradise? Although you see it all the time it is still one of those flowers that always brighten my day. I never have tried growing it but my friend said it’s not a bother and that it was a handsome plant even out of flower. I remember when I was in the Canary Islands (Tenerife) I was driving around up in the mountains when I came around a corner and there was about 3 acres of Bird in flower at a cut flower nursery. It was amazing. A native of South Africa it was introduced to European gardeners in the 1770’s when it was grown at Kew Gardens. It is the City of Los Angeles’s official flower and seems to grow very well in Southern California.

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