Monday, 10 December 2012

Winter berries/seeds/flowers and a Big Thank You

An opulent aromatic scent has arrived, bringing with it the golden glow and warmth of a festive fireside Christmas. The air richly pervaded with the smells of Labdanum, spicy Cloves and Exotic Amber.
Wikipedia informs me that Labdanum is the brown resin obtained from the Cistus shrubs that grow in the Mediterranean - a species of rockrose. The Cistus has a long history of use in herbal medicine and as a perfume ingredient.
image courtesy The Magical Christmas Wreath Company London
A Christmas candle from The Magical Christmas Wreath Company beautifully wrapped in tissue Toile - thank you Paul for your very generous Giveaway.
Snow berries
Leycesteria formosa - Himalayan honeysuckle
Sweetly scented Mahonia japonica - 'winter sun'
Garrya eliptica catkins - Silk Tassel Bush

macro photo of the fluffy silk tassels
Grasses catching the Winter sunshine
Clematis vitalba - old man's beard - wild clematis - seed heads

58 comments:

  1. Oooh, lucky you! I love the last Clematis photos - beautifully ethereal.

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    1. I noticed that these wild Clematis seed heads were very prolific along the hedgerows this year, and shown up to advantage by the very bright winter sun. It wasn't until I saw the images on the computer that I realised just how beautiful they were.

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  2. Love those Clematis seedpods and the Himalayan Honeysuckle, gorgeous colour. Is this in your garden? There's a lot to discover there still!
    Congratulations on winning the giveaway. Must smell so christmassy at your place.
    Bye,
    Marian

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    1. Dear Marian - the Himalayan Honeysuckle is in our garden, it tends to hide its pretty bracts and berries underneath the leaves. Fortunately the Clematis seedpods are from the countryside hedgerow, beautiful as they look, I would not want it rampaging all over the garden.
      Thanks for your congratulations, the candle really has brought Christmas into the house.

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    2. I had no idea Clematis would rampage all over a garden. You really live in a wonderful area, having Clematis grow in a hedgerow in the countryside. Must look beautiful when it blooms as well.
      Bye,
      Marian

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    3. Dear Marian - it is wild clematis not garden clematis. The flowers are small and green, not at all pretty, you would not want it rampaging in your garden. I will try and remember to take a photo of it next summer to show you.

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  3. Wonderful photos, Rosemary, especially those of the Old Man's Beard. They are the stuff of faery tales.:-) Your candle sounds beautifully seasonal - lucky you.

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    1. Dear Perpetua - I am sure that you have seen the Old Man's Beard in the hedgerows this year there seems to be such a lot of it. I must admit to not knowing how very beautiful it was until get got up close to it. They are perfect little seeds for scattering themselves on the wind.
      The candle is lit, and the smell is as you say beautifully seasonal.

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  4. what an exquisite selection, they are so charming, first I had to think of edible beries whe I read the title:-)

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    1. It is surprising what is still around in the garden even in December. No edible berries here as far as a know.

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  5. i am fascinated by the wild clematis!!!
    ( a lovely gveaway Rosemary how nice for you to win!)

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    1. The wild clematis seed heads are lovely. The seeds themselves are exquisitely shaped with their delicate soft silky tails to help them scatter.
      A lovely giveaway with beautiful Christmas aromas.

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  6. That clematis is stunning, Rosemary! I love this time of year....

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    1. I think that you could say that it is perfectly formed Kate, and beautifully designed to carry out its job.

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  7. I love old man's beard at this time of year but I have never seen such a wonderful picture of them as you have here. We used to have a mahonia bush in our garden and your pictures reminded me instantly of their wonderful scent.
    Sarah x

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    1. Dear Sarah - Mahonia does have a wonderful scent, and for anyone has never smelt it then its sweetness is totally unexpected especially from such a small flower.
      I caught the old man's beard when the winter sun was low in the sky which highlighted its wonderful soft silky tails.

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  8. Your photos of the clematis are stunning! It's lovely seeing the winter Christmas perspective x

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    1. It is surprising what is still around in the garden, and also the hedgerows. Before we know where we are, the snowdrops will be poking through the ground.

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  9. What a lovely present you got Rosemary !!! and I also loved the tissue Toile.
    Your photos are so beautiful! And the flowers are gorgeous!
    It was very interesting for me to read about the Labdanum scent in candles.
    Cistus shrubs grow in the little wood just across the road from my house and in the whole area around it. They are sticky with their resin and they smell beautifully.
    There are two types of cistus shrubs, one is white with long sticky leaves, but I prefer the pink rock rose which is just beautiful. I have even transplanted one in a pot.

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    1. Dear Marie-Anne - I have cistus shrubs growing in my garden, but I do not know whether they are the same ones. I must make a nick in the stem and see what happens and if they smell. I had no idea that they were used for perfume before.
      Thank you - glad you enjoyed seeing the photos.

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  10. Wonderful photographs of the flowers and plants during this freezing temperatures. Wow, the Ember Glow from The Magical Christmas Wreath Company must really smell so good!

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    1. At the moment the temperatures are not too bad here, and we are getting lots of winter sun which is nice. The house smells very Christmassy with the scent from the candle.

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  11. Dear Rosemary - So often I look at your nature photographs like the Silk Tassels and think that I would like to paint them ala Georgia O'Keefe. The Wild Climatis is so unusual (to me, anyway) — did you plant it?

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    1. Dear Mark - the Wild Clematis does have beautiful seed heads when viewed close up. However, it is not a garden plant, and I would not want it scrambling over my hedges as it tends to run a mock. It has very insignificant green coloured flowers.

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  12. Amazing photos Rosemary, especially the last ones. I saw some snow berries yesterday when I went for a short walk, I think they're so pretty.

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    1. I wonder if you touched the snow berries Paula? - they have a very odd texture, almost like spongey polystyrene.

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  13. Wonderful photos. Some of those plants I have never seen.

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    1. Thank you - so pleased that you enjoyed seeing them.

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  14. Hallo dear Rosemary!Fantastic photos!!So beautiful plants!!Never see these plants before,love the last one!Writing you from my daughters i pad!!No internet!Wishing you a lovely day my friend!
    Dimi..

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    1. My dear Dimi - so glad that you are managing to circumnavigate your internet problems with some help from your daughter - there are still a few flowers and berries growing in the garden even though it is December. Hope your internet problems at home are soon solved for you.

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  15. Such beautiful flower photos thank you for sharing them with us

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    1. Thank you for your visit Julie - glad that you enjoyed seeing them.

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  16. Wow! adorable plants on the last pictures!

    Have a great week!

    xoxo, Juliana | PJ’ Happies :) | PJ’ Ecoproject

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    1. The seeds of the wild clematis are pretty spectacular. Thanks for your visit.

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  17. Wow ! Everybody likes the wild clematis :) She's a beauty . Love the mahonia too :) Your garden is full of surprises, dear Rosemary ! Have a lovely evening !

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    1. The Mahonia japonica has a heavenly scent so it is rather lovely to have in the garden during December. Glad that you enjoyed seeing the wild clematis seed heads.

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  18. I love Old Man's Beard, it reminds me of growing up in Kent - we hardly ever see it growing wild in our part of Yorkshire.

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    1. There is a lot of it here all along the hedgerows, and it has been looking beautiful in the bright winter sunshine.

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  19. Fascinating photos of your plants there Rosemary, Some I have never seen . The variety is amazing.
    Most interesting post. I enjoyed seeing it all
    happy week
    val

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    1. Dear Val - quite a lot of people have mentioned that several of the plants are new to them too. It is surprising what is still hanging around in the garden - I even have a big pot of geraniums still in flower in the porch at the front of the house which is open to the weather.
      Glad you enjoyed seeing them Val.

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  20. Your photography skills are amazing Rosemary. I love those last two shots.

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    1. I really did not realise how beautiful the seeds heads were until I looked closely. They are little works of art, and beautifully designed to do their job.

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  21. Dear Rosemary, Such a sweet, dainty silhouette picture you have made. A lovely candle and beautiful wrapping paper. I love your photos. How amazing nature is when we look more closely.

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    1. Dear Betty - taking macro photos has been a revelation to me, the camera can see more clearly what is beyond our vision. I agree with you 'nature is amazing up close'.

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  22. Dear Rosemary, beautiful photos. I'm taking more macro photos and what you can see close-up is fascinating. Thank you for visiting my blog and becoming a follower. I'm looking forward to following you too! Have a good day!

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    1. Dear Linda - welcome and thanks for your comment. Taking macro photos really is an eye opener, I love to see what turns up on the computer.

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  23. Hello Rosemary, I left a witty comment earlier in the week, but I see it never posted... Now I'll have to be witty all over again! I'm still waiting for a whiz-kid to invent an internet scent-sender, in the meantime I'll have to rely on your enticing description and imagine the delicious scent of your candle. I love your last photos, the clematis look like magical tinsel with dark starry centers.

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    1. Dear Rosemary - sorry about that, it is annoying. I have looked behind the scenes, so to speak, and could not find the comment, I thought that it might have gone into spam.
      Think spicy Christmas smells and you are almost there.
      The clematis seed heads were a surprises when I put them on the computer, the starry centres and tinsel seem right for Christmas, they also reminded me of the spice - star anise.

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  24. Lovely photos Rosemary. Garrya eliptica is one of those plants I've had on my wishlist for sometime along with mahonia. We haven't grown it in this garden but I have very fond memories of the large specimen at our previous house with those beautiful glaucous berrires and intoxicating scent in winter.
    Many thanks for such a wonderful response to your prize we are so thankful for your kind words and support it means a lot to us and to see our fairy in one of your beautiful roundels it a real treat!
    Paul

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    1. Dear Paul - the thanks are all mine to you.
      The Garrya will be looking even better in a few weeks time when it shows its little flowers.
      If you want the roundel you can grab it!!!

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  25. The Snow Berries and Wild Clematis are beautiful aren't they. Are Snow Berries edible?

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    1. Sadly not, and it looks as if they inedible to birds too otherwise I am sure that they would have been eaten by now. Up close the wild clematis seeds are beautiful, I agree.

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  26. Congratulations for your candle ! The photos are amazing ! Did you ever thought to take part in a photography ψοντεστ ? You will be the first price !
    Olympia

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    1. Dear Olympia - It makes me happy that you enjoy seeing my photos - thank you for your generous comment. I only have a small point and shoot camera. Sometimes I send a photo to my local paper showing the countryside around where I live and they publish it, but that is as far as it goes.

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  27. Beautiful photos and post!!!! nice blog!!! would you like to follow each other?
    Besos, desde España, Marcela♥

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    1. Dear Marcela - thank you for your kind comments and visit. I am about to pop over and visit your blog.

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    2. Thank you so much for your visit!!! I follow you!
      Have a wonderful weekend!

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    3. I shall look forward to seeing your posts.

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