The Garden Worm blog Digging up the best dirt on gardening!

October 28, 2010


Filed under: Contests,Fall,Flowers,Miscellaneous — Judy @ 6:47 pm

Oh My! Our sunflower mix scan was chosen as the Silver Winner in the GGW Picture This contest for October. How thrilling as it is the first time to enter their monthly contest!

Sunflower mix]GGW Silver Award

I find it so much easier to arrange a composition on the flatbed scanner and get the picture right than to try to fiddle with my camera settings and compose something out in the field. Perhaps it is a matter of experience? I am largely self-taught in practically everything I do creatively – web design, graphics, sewing, cooking, . . . , and scanner photography. I haven’t got the depth of field thing mastered on my camera yet. Something more to work on!

October 23, 2010

Hot Fall Colors

Filed under: Fall,Our gardens,Slideshows — Judy @ 9:36 pm

Even though the gardens are rapidly winding down, things are coloring up very nicely. We’ve not had a hard frost yet and, with decent moisture still in the soil, relatively warmish days, and nights hovering under 45-50 degrees, the forecast is for continuing gorgeous fall color. Yes, the leaves are coming down, but there is much to admire out there. Take a look!

Hot Fall Colors 2010 Slideshow

October 18, 2010

Scanner Flowers

Filed under: Flowers,Miscellaneous — Judy @ 11:11 am

Over on the Gardening Gone Wild blog, they sponsor a monthly photo contest called ‘Picture This.’ The one for this month (here) is on scanner photography. As many of you know, that is one of our favorite methods and we love to use our images in various ways – printed on paper as cards or calendars like this . . .

Mixed flower card

or printed on fabric and made into pillows or bags, or used in decoupage on wood or glass followed by decorative painting such as for our birdhouses or clocks (explore our website at FleurDesigns).

My sister in Texas and I do this together so we have access to many different types of flowers. We like bright and colorful combinations since we mostly scan during the summers and create the fun stuff during the long winters (at least here in upstate New York). We love to surprise each other with the designs that we can come up with.

Mixed flower wreath

Essentially, our scanner photography consists of collecting some flowers and/or foliage or other botanical geegaws, laying them on the flat scanner bed, and pressing ‘scan.’ We have found, however, that the scanner depth of resolution makes a difference. My sister’s scanner broke and she had a difficult time finding another that was acceptable. My scanner, an old HP ScanJet 6200C, does a great job.


Quince primrose line

Once we have obtained the digital image, we trim it and might remove the scanner background in our photoediting software. At this point, it is essentially ready for use. We may further enhance it with various graphical elements such as borders or different backgrounds to create variations on the design as shown below. Even so, flowers remain the prime element in our designs!

Wildflowers with checks

This last image is one of our favorites! What could be better to celebrate fall than sunflowers?

Sunflower mix

All images and designs ©2001-2010 by Judith Cowles for FleurDesigns, Just the Gardener, and The Garden Worm blog. No material may be reproduced without explicit written permission.

October 16, 2010

More Fall Containers

Filed under: Containers,Fall — Judy @ 9:51 pm

We’ve had our first frost and we are planting bulbs and doing fall garden cleanups. Yes, it is almost time to hibernate! But before then, a few more fall containers that I put together.

Pumpkins and Angelina sedum

Sometimes my clients are very diligent about caring for their containers and they still look pretty good at this time of year. Adding a little color in the way of small mums or gourds or surrounding them with pumpkins are all they need to celebrate the fall season.

Elatior begonias and Diamond Frost Euphorbia

Gaura, lantana, and coleus

Sometimes the containers have not aged so well and need a more major reworking. Using the few remaining plants and ending up with something worthy of the season requires some ingenuity.

Fall vignette

Mixed fall container

And then there are those areas that never got addressed this year, but suddenly were front and center when a backyard party was planned. Case in point, this little garden near the gazebo was full of weeds and the former fountain in the center was no longer functional. The clients weren’t sure how they wanted to proceed with this area so I elected to use a few mums and sedums to temporarily brighten the ground. The pièce de résistance was finding a great plant stand and constructing this glorious basket with bright fall colors to place on top. Sort of simulates a fountain, doesn’t it?

Faux fountain

And finally, sometimes you just need to create all new plantings in the containers like this.

Ferns, heuchera, and rudbeckia

The leaves are turning, there is a nip in the air, but the colors of fall will keep us warm a while longer.

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