Capturing this photograph gave me no end of satisfaction. It was a very small flower (< 5mm diameter) to work with and it was a windy day and getting focus and framing right using increased magnification from extension tube attachments on the lens was a challenge. Finally getting the black background using a remote flash was also difficult. In the end, the results showed a beautiful, almost hand painted flower with flecks of yellow, magenta and crimson on the petals. There is truly beauty in small things!!
Nikon D7000 with a 105mm Sigma macro lens with extension tubes.
In a German legend, when god had finished naming all plants, a small unnamed plant cried out “Forget-me-not, my lord”. Then god said “That shall be your name”. Another legend claims that after the Creator thought he had finished giving the flowers their colours, he heard one whisper “Forget me not!” There was nothing left but a very small amount of blue, but the forget-me-not was delighted to wear such a light blue shade.
The tiny, cheerful blue flowers of Myosotis have played an important part in European folklore and history – from being used as a symbol by Henry Bolingbroke (later Henry IV) after being exiled by Richard II to its adoption by the Freemasons during the Nazi regime across Europe. The flowers of forget-me-not are no more than 1cm in diameter and grow in long thin stalks bearing many flowers. They are popular in gardens and grow on the side of river banks and streams throughout Europe.
Nikon D7000 camera with a 105mm macro lens with extension tubes
ISO 200, f/18, 1/250 with external remote slave flash
For all the beauty and colour of the strawberry fruit, the Fragaria blossoms are small, white flowers with a yellow centre (about a centimetre across). The following photo is of a wild strawberry flower shot with a macro lens with extension tube attachments (hence extreme macro). Strawberries below to the rose family and have 5 sepals, 5 petals and many stamens arranged spherically.
Click on the photo for a larger version on Flickr.
Hibiscus is a great flower to photograph. The contrast between the green sepals and bracts, showy red petals (this particular variety), deep red pistils surrounded by bright yellow stamens make a great study in contrast especially against a dark background. You may not enjoy the botany below, but I’m sure you’ll agree that nature truly offers a marvelous spectacle in the microscopic.
Click on any picture to see a larger version!!
We all learned in school botany (well some of us!) about the various parts that make up a flower. Generally, flowers have 3 components –
Calyx – made up of sepals that protect the bud in infancy and form the base of the flower
Corolla – made up of showy petals that encase the reproductive organs
Reproductive parts (Corolla, Stamen) that are in turn
Stamen – that make up the male reproductive parts – in turn made up of the filament that holds up the pollen sac or anther. The anther releases pollen when open.
Pistil – The female reproductive parts of a flower. These are also made up of three components
Ovary – that finally forms the seed after fertilization
Style – a stalk above the ovary
Stigma – the farthest extend of the female part of the flower which receives the pollen for fertilization. This is usually sticky and allows pollen to attach.
The pollen in the above picture look spherical, don’t they? But in the picture below, which is a crop of the above, you can see that the pollen grains are spiky, thereby allowing them to stick to the stigma surface.
Well, that’s my botany lesson! Thanks for stopping by….