The Oregon Garden in late summer: LAPC

The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge this week is to pick images that go with five possible words. I chose to use all five. I am featuring pictures from a late September trip to The Oregon Garden, in Silverton, Oregon. It’s an 80-acre botanical garden that is beautiful to visit during any season. This mixed border is … Continue reading The Oregon Garden in late summer: LAPC

The art of quilters in Sisters, Oregon: LAPC

When I was strolling down Hood Avenue on 9 July 2022, something across the street caught my eye. I was there to see the art of quilters at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show. Though the event has taken breaks due to wildfire smoke and pandemics, it proudly celebrated its 47th year in 2022. A WOW! … Continue reading The art of quilters in Sisters, Oregon: LAPC

Fall at the Japanese Garden in Portland: LAPC & FOTD

I have been patiently waiting for fall at the Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon. Every day, I visited their Fall Color Status Update website. In mid-October, the site indicated good leaf color in their plantings. Off we went! A brilliant rainbow of colors bordered the Flat Garden. The green Circle and Gourd Islands in the … Continue reading Fall at the Japanese Garden in Portland: LAPC & FOTD

Alley Art in Bend, Oregon – Part 2: PPAC

Here are ten pieces of alley art you can view along NW Gasoline Alley in Bend, Oregon. I previously featured artwork decorating another alley in Tin Pan Alley Art in Bend. This collection of artwork is part of a public initiative supporting local arts and culture in Bend, Oregon. The paintings take Bend’s outdoor lifestyle … Continue reading Alley Art in Bend, Oregon – Part 2: PPAC

A garden of plenty: Homegrown Harvest Photo Challenge

Last year we started to create a new garden space in our backyard. After a lot of work, it’s looking like a garden of plenty now. This is how it looked several years ago when we bought the place. The house included a fenced dog run with a heated doghouse. Some of the beds in … Continue reading A garden of plenty: Homegrown Harvest Photo Challenge

Rainbow of soft colors in my garden: LAPC

Right now I have a rainbow of soft colors in my garden. Many plants are blooming in the high desert. This lupine has delicate shades of purple and peach on the same plant. My purple sage shrub started blooming last week. This plant is a member of the mint family. If you crush the leaves … Continue reading Rainbow of soft colors in my garden: LAPC

Old, new, borrowed, blue gardens: LAPC

The challenge for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge this weekend is Something old, new, borrowed, and blue. I am highlighting the recent High Desert Garden Tour in Central Oregon. Something old I saw many plants I’m familiar with on this tour. Some I knew the names of, others I was like, “Uh… what was your name … Continue reading Old, new, borrowed, blue gardens: LAPC

High Desert Garden Tour: Colorful

Colorful Flowers on the High Desert Garden Tour Here are some pictures from the High Desert Garden Tour  located in Bend, Oregon. Lots of colorful gardens out there! There were gardens with winding paths and comfortable places to sit to take in the scenery.

Ice plant in my garden: Friday Flowers

These colorful ice plant blossoms brighten up my garden in the spring and summer months. This a drought resistant plant that the bees love. The small succulent leaves are interesting too. Ice plants are a low-maintenance ground cover plant that does well in areas with hot, dry summers.

Mule Deer Field Trip near Bend, Oregon

At this time of year, mule deer are migrating and breeding in Central Oregon. Your best chances of seeing this nighttime-feeding deer are in the early hours of the morning or in the late evening. On a chilly November morning, High Desert Museum Curator of Wildlife, Jon Nelson, led a group of people eager to … Continue reading Mule Deer Field Trip near Bend, Oregon

Water wise gardening: Growing more with less

Xeriscaping Have you ever seen a plant out in nature and thought to yourself, “Wow, I wish I could have that in my yard!” You can with water wise gardening. Well sometimes you can and if you include certain types of plants, you’ll benefit in several ways including: Saving $$$ on your water bill. Ensuring … Continue reading Water wise gardening: Growing more with less

Special flowers: LAPC

Today I’ll share a few stories related to special flowers in my life. Roses Whenever I see roses, I think of a funny thing that happened to me when I was in my early twenties. I had just started dating a guy who checked parking passes where I worked. I invited him to my cozy … Continue reading Special flowers: LAPC

Hibiscus photo & drawings: First Friday Art

For this First Friday Art post, I’m sharing a hibiscus photo and a few drawings. I took this picture of a Spin the Bottle Hibiscus, Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, at the Oregon Garden in Silverton, Oregon. I’m not sure who came up with the common name, but it’s a funny one! I’m sharing a quick pen-and-ink drawing … Continue reading Hibiscus photo & drawings: First Friday Art

Find special surprises: LAPC & TTC

Find treasures on walks When out and about taking pictures, you never know when you might find special surprises. This delightful dragon sculpture was at The Oregon Garden in Silverton, Oregon. It brought a little cheer into a cloudy day. Though not as much is in bloom at this time of year, I was happy … Continue reading Find special surprises: LAPC & TTC

A bold blue sage border: Friday Flowers

I saw this bold blue sage border in the 80-acre Oregon Garden, located in Silverton, Oregon. It’s impressive how they pay attention to all the plants surrounding bold flowers such as these. The framing brings out their best features. Friday Flowers

Colorful Border on Fall’s Eve: Friday Flowers

A colorful border full of flowers on the last day of summer at Oregon Garden in Silverton, Oregon.  Friday Flowers

Branches in a new light: LAPC

These images show branches in a new light… Reclining and resting in a sea of green Coated with a covering of snow Framing a fiery sunrise Burdened with a bounty of fruit Shrouded by the smoke of a prescribed burn   Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Magical Light

Oakleaf Hydrangea: Friday Flowers & FOTD

Unusual hydrangea This type of hydrangea has interesting flowers and foliage. This shrub blooms over a long period of time in the summer. The white flowers fade to pink in the fall. The large leaves turn maroon, orange-bronze, or red in autumn. Flower of the Day – Pink hydrangea Friday Flowers

Happy Turkey Day from John Day!

Happy Turkey Day from John Day, Oregon! We saw about one hundred wild turkeys alongside the road near John Day a few weeks ago. Dinner anyone? They have become so common in some areas, that they are considered pests. They sometimes destroy crops and gardens and can become aggressive towards people in the breeding season. … Continue reading Happy Turkey Day from John Day!

Let us (or lettuce) be grateful: Macro Monday

Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom. Marcel Proust A little play on the words “let us” with this up close picture of lettuce growing in Hollinshead Park’s community garden in Bend, Oregon. Macro Monday

Imagine a World Exhibition

     The Imagine a World exhibition at the High Desert Museum focuses on past and present efforts to create utopian communities. Participants joined for assorted reasons, including religious persecution, environmental concerns, and anti-war sentiments.      The communities featured are in the Western United States. Founding members often thought of the West as an idyllic, “empty” … Continue reading Imagine a World Exhibition

A colorful walk in Portland: 1-to-3 Photo Challenge

Today I’m sharing a photograph of a colorful walk in Portland processed three ways. We visited the Portland Japanese Garden in October 2021. The fall colors are a photographer’s dream! I’ll be showing how I processed this picture from the garden three ways with Corel PaintShop Pro 2021. Prior to trying out the various effects, I … Continue reading A colorful walk in Portland: 1-to-3 Photo Challenge

Western tiger swallowtail box & photo: First Friday Art

Here’s a western tiger swallowtail painting I did on a small wooden box. Here’s one I saw on the High Desert Garden Tour a few years ago. The Western tiger swallowtail, Papilio rutulus, ranges throughout western North America. The state insect in Oregon is the Oregon swallowtail butterfly, Papilio machaon oregonius. They have paler yellow … Continue reading Western tiger swallowtail box & photo: First Friday Art

Fun with photos – Photo Bloopers 5: LAPC

It’s time once again for fun with photos. Welcome to Photo Bloopers 5! This is what I do with pictures that don’t quite fit in or turned out weird looking. They needed a few words to make them more interesting. Hope they entertain you!

Some of my best photos from 2021: LAPC, SS

It’s time to share special photos from the past year. Please enjoy this selection of nature, history, and art photos from Bend Branches. Best Nature Pictures The first photo shows a scene at the Portland Japanese Garden. We visited in October, when fall colors were at their peak. This picture shows a pronghorn buck at … Continue reading Some of my best photos from 2021: LAPC, SS

The wisest ones wait – 2 haiku: SS & Haiku Challenge

the wisest ones waitimpatient trembles of greenlonging for fall’s kiss scarlet embracesgold whispers, orange laughterautumn’s fleeting love Sunday Stills (SS) – Leaves and Trees Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge – Wait and Wise

Mushrooms up close – A true story: Macro Monday & OLWG

A couple I once knew had a memorable experience involving mushrooms, up close and personal. They went out mushroom picking with friends in the rainforests near Olympia, Washington. That night, they prepared a fancy meal that included the mushrooms they harvested. After dinner, they sat around the table exclaiming how wonderful the freshly-harvested mushrooms tasted. … Continue reading Mushrooms up close – A true story: Macro Monday & OLWG

Clearwater Native Plant Nursery Sale: FF

Once a year, in the middle of June, Clearwater Native Plant Nursery opens its gates to the public. This contract grow nursery provides native plants for restoration and landscaping projects. Plants sold here grow well in upland, riparian, and wetland habitats. The nursery is located in Redmond, Oregon. Clearwater Native Plant Nursery provided plants to … Continue reading Clearwater Native Plant Nursery Sale: FF

One more chance-Backyard bird adventure: BWPC

So, the other day I heard a loud “chirp, chirp” call outside my house. I peered out the back door and spotted a baby American Robin in the middle of the yard. Maybe it was the same one we put back in its nest several days before, giving it one more chance at life. When … Continue reading One more chance-Backyard bird adventure: BWPC

Pink flowers in my yard: Sunday Stills

Today I’m featuring portraits of pink flowers in my Bend, Oregon yard. All of these plants are drought tolerant, once established. The first photo is an ice plant. This groundcover has cheerful starburst flowers and succulent leaves. The leaves turn a bronze color in winter. We had an escapee take root in another part of … Continue reading Pink flowers in my yard: Sunday Stills

Manzanita blossoms up close: Macro Monday

Manzanita blossoms are putting on a show right now in Central Oregon. The delicate pink blossoms contrast with the thick, leathery green leaves and red bark. The bark on these shrubs peels like on a madrone tree. It’s one of my favorite local plants but it refuses to grow in my garden. That gives me … Continue reading Manzanita blossoms up close: Macro Monday

An amazing collection – Baker City Rocks!: LAPC

When I walked around a corner into a gallery at the Baker Heritage Museum a couple years ago, I didn’t know what to expect. Wow, what a special moment! As you may know, I like rocks and this is an amazing collection of rocks, minerals, and fossils. One of the first pieces you see is … Continue reading An amazing collection – Baker City Rocks!: LAPC

Special photos from 2020: LAPC & SS

It’s time to share special photos from the past year. Please enjoy this selection of nature, history, and art photos from Bend Branches. Nature Photos One day, while playing around with editing effects, this mirror image of autumn leaves sparked my imagination. I saw a woman wearing a crimson cape in the photo below. The … Continue reading Special photos from 2020: LAPC & SS

The softness of snow: MM, SS, & Six Sentence Story

Peering through a branch-lined portal at the softness of snow. Where frosty starbursts emerge from the desert soil. And wise elders rejoice, reaching to the sky with arms contorted by the years. Ancient trees collect the bountiful flakes falling from the sky to share. They tuck the next generation under downy crystalline blankets. When spring … Continue reading The softness of snow: MM, SS, & Six Sentence Story

A peninsula of flowers: Friday Flowers

This peninsula of flowers was seen in the Old Mill district of Bend, Oregon. The gardeners do a great job maintaining these picturesque flowerbeds. They brighten up even the darkest of days. Friday Flowers