I get asked often, “How big is your garden?” With all my photos of flowers, some people assume I have a large garden, and this is not in fact the case. Although even maintaining the smallish, rather urban garden we have is a stretch—a joyful stretch—along with taking care of the three boys, photography, and the rest of life.
Actually, I am tempted to answer the question about the size of my garden in biblical terms: to mutilate John 14:2, around my Father’s house there are many gardens. My garden is dense, with enough to keep me excited about macro flower photography. A kind of large container garden on about 1/3 of an acre.
The fruits and vegetables are in raised beds along the narrow, protected southwestern exposure. The northeastern passage is a path between the house and street, too narrow really to be called a garden, but beautiful in in a secret garden kind of way. The backyard is more-or-less consigned to the kids, their play structures, and vehicles.
My garden has the virtue that it is mine: if I want to put a tripod leg somewhere, clamp a plant, or even cut a flower for studio photography, there is no one to stop me.
“Are all your flower photographs of your own garden?” No, there are many gardens surrounding my Father’s house. Some days, when I have the time, I like to mount my equipment in my pack, tripod on the outside, and head for a good flower photography destination. Very locally, and not in preferential order, Annie’s, Berkeley Hort, Blake Garden, and the UC Berkeley Botannical Garden. I took the photograph of the Escapade Rose (with a little spider) the other day at the municipal Berkeley Rose Garden.
Here’s a photo of a balloon flower from my very own garden:
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