This afternoon a gentle snowfall began.  What better time to post about the beautiful Longwood Gardens?  A colleague and I visited there the day after the late January snow/ice storm.  Appropriate to the weather there weren’t many people there.  Because of that Longwood was generous with their tripod usage policy, permitting us to shoot from our tripods after the usual noon cutoff.

The post-holiday theme is orchids and they dominated the scene.  Here’s a simple stalk laden with blooms in harmony with a single fountain jet.

But, there were all sorts of other blossoms such as beds filled with masses of these Rieger begonias.


Longwood veterans will remember the warm, humid orchid room down one of the hallways from the main conservatory.  Even with the overall theme of orchids this room is still a camera stopper.  For this image there was so much light coming from the overhead glass that I found it useful to use a 3G graduated density neutral filter to darken the upper part of the stem.  I’ve gotton away from such filters and tended towards HDR but it can be problematic.  It was fun to use the “grad” here and have good results, even handheld in front if the lens.

Here’s a near-perfect yellow hibiscus.  I saw another last week  in a hedge of hibiscus during my week in Florida, growing well without need of a conservatory.

A restful scene of falling water and delicate orchids.


Finally, a reminder that winter awaited us outside of these lovely gardens.