Tag: Nikon V3


Ceanothus is also known as California Lilac. it is a shrub with glossy green leaves (as you can see in the photo!). It comes in other colors, too, but the blue is the original color. To me, it is always the sign that spring is on the way – and today I found it, along with a lot of other plants in bloom. I was as busy as a bee!

I used my Nikon V3 and 70-300mm lens, which, with a 2.8 crop factor, makes the 300mm closer to 810mm. It allows for great shots and I totally forget, until I use it, what a wonderful system it is.

Sycamore Trees

Here in California, sycamore trees are common, found often alongside creeks and streams. Every autumn their leaves change color, creating a colorful world above and below. The leaves are large, too, often more than 10-12 inches (40-45 cm) in diameter.

Monday, Josh and I drove up the coast into Santa Barbara County, specifically to go to Nojoqui Falls (pronounced NOW-WHA-KEY). To get there, we took the 101, enjoying views of the Pacific Ocean, and then into hills around Solvang. A quick turn onto the Old Coast Road, and a bit more of a drive, and there we were. Nojoqui Falls are one of the few waterfalls in our area – water is not common here, so they are a real delight after the rain. To reach them, you walk up a trail that moves into an ever-narrowing canyon. The bright of day gives way to gloom and shade, with only spots of bright light breaking through. Along the way, beautiful sycamore line the trail, some old and twisted, others magnificently tall.

Mexican Sage

Black and white does not do justice to the beauty of Mexican sage.  The flowers are soft and somewhat plush, with white and dark lavender to purple blooms.  The leaves are long and slender, slightly hairy, and release that fragrance typical of sage when crushed.  It’s a lovely garden plant, excellent in dry climes, is perennial, and requires little maintenance.  Besides all that, it is an excellent plant for a beautiful green natural dye.


I live in a typical American suburb built in the late 20th century.  It’s pleasant, and not on a gridded platte.  Here, in Monterey, is an older neighborhood, most likely dating from 1910-1930 when neighborhoods were built and the streets ran parallel and perpendicular to each other.  If care is taken, or upscaling occurs, these neighborhoods are charming and pleasant for walks.  The houses here are smallish and closer together than where I live, but a part of me is always drawn to these areas.  They are usually near downtown (older downtown) and very pleasant for walking.  Here, the road slopes steeply down to the left, while the one on the right and out of sight is straight.  Good place for exercise and sight-seeing.