Getting The Hang Of It


Naturally, I couldn’t wait to get out into the garden and play with my new toy. Confining myself to the Creative Automatic setting with the zoom lens, I made a few close-ups. I had about a 60% success rate.

Asiatic Lilies

Starting with lilies, here are some Asiatics dappled by sunlight;

Day Lily

a day lily basking in full sun;

Fly on Lily

Fly on Lily – Version 2

and a fly exploring one in the New Bed.

Rose Mamma Mia

Now to roses. Mamma Mia is maturing nicely;

Rose Love Knot

Love Knot is prolific;

Rose For Your Eyes Only

and this is For Your Eyes Only.


These beautiful penstemons also grace the Rose Garden.

Bottle Brush plant

The red Bottle Brush plants, now that the yellow one is over, are coming into their own.

I also did some dead-heading and cut the grass, while Jackie watered the pots, and tidied and catered for our weekend guests. These were my long-term friend, Jessie, and her flat-mate, Guru, who arrived in time for lunch.

After lunch we visited the New Zealand graves at St Nicholas’s church in Brockenhurst. This was of interest to Guru because he has recently been learning about the Indian Army involvement in World War One, and there are three Indians buried there. I photographed one of these on our previous trip. (The pictures that follow were made with the CanonSX700 HS)

Arogyasami' s gravestoneSumeer gravestone

Here are the other two.

Belgian gravestone

On that day the light had been too strong for me to photograph the stone of the unknown Belgians who had worked in the hospital. Today was less bright.

Gravestone in tree

One of the nineteenth century stones has had a tree push it over;

Cross in meadow

the lichen on another blended well with the wild flower meadow.

After this we attended the  RNLI fundraising event at Gordon’s home in Downton Lane. This was an afternoon of jazz music and cream tea in the garden. It was very enjoyable.

GuruJessie and Guru

We arrived too late for a traditional cream tea, but were amply compensated with home-made cakes and delicious strawberries and cream. Jessie amused us by furtling in her bag for sweeteners for her tea.

We dined on Jackie’s classic chicken jalfrezi, pilau rice, and parathas. She drank Hoegaarden, and I drank a Georges du Boeuf Fleurie 2014 that our guests had brought. Jessie’s choice was Irn-Bru, and Guru’s orange juice.


  1. As you are maybe aware Derrick I know nothing about cameras or the art of photography, but that is an extremely fine closeup of the fly and the lily! Also of the beautiful young Indian man! ‘Furtle’ is a new word and the act of ‘furtling’ is only understood via your accompanying photo. 🙂

      1. I hardly like to ask whether you made this one up, given your penchant for obscure words. Given that “chortle” was also coined in recorded history, I can imagine it exists. It ought to mean a furtive chortle, surely? Though clearly not, in this context (even if J DOES appear to be amused!)

  2. I’m so far behind on everyone’s posts – what toy, Derrick? A camera lens?

    Day lilies grow like weeds in my garden but for the life of me I can’t get Asiatic lilies to flourish. Lucky you!

      1. I imagine one could do so, if one happened to keep a spurtle always at hand. But my friend, Myrtle, tell me that for stirring porridge, a furtle with a spurtle is most fertile.

  3. Beautiful photos Derrick! Now we get to see your garden with all the richness that you and Jackie experience it. Well, except smell and touch and bird song and all the hard work 😊

    1. “except smell and touch and bird song”#
      That’s the next “toy”, I expect 🙂

  4. Great photos, giving texture to the petals that feels as if you can touch it. And there’s the beauty of digital – able to chart progress in an instant. You are going to have lots of fun, especially with such great results as your starting point. And love the new word – furtle.

  5. Honestly I have always enjoyed your posts and gorgeous photographs, Derrick. Now, details seem to pop out! The green shimmer on the floor was exquisite!

  6. Excellent shots so far, Derrick.
    The rose and the daylily images are particularly good.
    The sharp focus on the fly indicates you have a very steady hand indeed. I’ve noted down which Canon Camera you’ve got so I’ll have a look at a photo of the dials/settings and manual to see if it’s similar to my old Canon bodies. Since you’ve done lots of photography over the years, I’m sure you’ll learn everything very quickly.

      1. That does help of course, Derrick, but nothing beats a very steady hand. I might suggest yours is even more steady than mine.

    1. Johnna- your my kind of lady! Who wants to look at flowers when there is chocolate cake !

      1. If THAT’s your priority, Jackie, and yet you grow that profusion of flowers, where’s the secret hoard?

  7. Your new Canon is paying dividends Derek. With so much violence and ugliness in the world it is so important to promote beauty. Alway great to record those that died defending us. We will remember them.

  8. Yes, a lovely set of photographs. It’s good to see that somebody else knows the sweetener rule as applied to cake. One sweetener negates up to 10,000 calories of cake.

  9. The close-ups are just WOW, Derrick..especially the fly. The roses and the bottle-brush…they are amazing… 🙂

    So, this time you had polau rice (we spell it in that way) and parathas as well 😀 Our favourite dishes, we generally add Spicy Gravy Chicken with it. If you know any Indian out there, try this out… 🙂

  10. I don’t know anything about cameras, but those photos are amazing, Derrick. The lily with the fly and the roses–you can almost feel their texture from the photos.

    Your tea looked lovely and delicious, even though you missed the cream tea. (Does that mean scones and clotted cream in addition to the other goodies you had?) I also laughed at the “furtling.”

  11. Momentarily distracted by that enticing tea and the thought of a cup of proper English char, I have to say that these pictures are absolutely stunning. I am so hit and miss even with what my husband reminds me is a decent camera. These are fantastic.

  12. Fantastic hospitality, wonderful food, great company and a garden worth paying to see! Carry on furtling!! Love and thanks to both. Jessie xx

  13. A new word for me, too! Those close-ups are incredible. Once you get the hang of the new camera, you’ll really be cooking with gas, as we say in Maine.The cemetery shots were also very fine.

  14. Oh my! You really are getting the hang of it. The flowers are drop dead gorgeous and so realistic one can almost feel the texture just by seeing them. Really fantastic shots of the flowers. The portraits are also very crisp and at the same time with a warm tonality. I think you have got yourself a very good buy for a toy 😀

  15. Great shots, Derrick. Thanks for the ‘furtling’ chortle. Seems to me that indulging all that cake and cream would negate any good done by having sweeteners instead of sugar. 😀

  16. Derrick, these close ups are really great, particularly those bottle brush plants.
    The grave marker with the lichen in the field is a great image, too.

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