Among the Allium

Love the shapes in this one. Parts of orbs. Really wonder how the bumble sees it. I remember learning as just a really tiny kid that bees saw in “ultraviolet”. Didn’t know what that meant (and I’m still not really sure that I do) and I remember thinking about that lots. Coming to the understanding that I really was limited in what I could see (and, those elephants’ and dogs’ ranges) and hear and maybe even taste and feel and smell… Wondering if there were other senses that we (collectively) had not yet figured out. There are some real lessons here that I won’t yammer on about. One of my first memories, though, of pondering the world of bees…and then and thus…my own world, too.

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Wool Carder Bee Doing What Wool Carder Bees Do

These little ones are just nasty. Really territorial. And they’ll knock anyone else off the blossoms that they have claimed.

Here’s a good shot of one just before impact. The next pic in the series shows the honeybee (very badly out of focus) well away from the blossom. I don’t catch many like this, but they’re neat shots.

Will be in Whitefish, Montana on Fri, Sat, Sun for the art festival. Come check it out if you’re in the area!

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Kinda Twisted on the Allium

Got back from Colorado somewhat late in the day – but still shot at twilight. Haven’t had time to look at the shots from yesterday yet (was hopeful), so you get a bee on the allium (from May of this year) today.

Seems each flower and blossom is a bit different as far as where the pollen and nectar are. And it’s fun watching the bees do what they do to get at it. Sometimes, like yesterday with the carpenter bees, they crawl right up inside of the blossom (agastache). Today’s bee looks like she’s grabbing one blossom and twisting herself toward and on another to do her work. I really like shapes in photography – and that’s a great bee shape. Fresh stuff tomorrow! (Not like this one is stale or anything, but…)

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Subaru Blue and an Allium

Today I’ll be at the Smash in the Square 2021 Spring Festival at The Village at Castle Pines, Colorado. It runs from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Would love to see you there if you’re in the area – check out not only the bees, but birds, wild horses, other wildlife, etc.

There are three really tall alliums by the driveway. And, of course, the bees love them. Sorry I’ll be away when they’re at their height. But…got a few good shots. Series of ten or so in pretty good focus – with the bee in different positions. Did a bunch of crops on them that varied greatly and meant to do a series all in one day. May do that later on this summer. The blue in the lower left of a the pic is a Subaru. I’m not entirely sure what the red/orange up top is. And I included the circle (bad form?) up there in the upper left purposely. I like the shapes and colors in this one.

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Toward a Neat Allium

Don’t think I’ve gotten one on this one this year. This allium is so neat. Don’t know the name, but it’s like a ball of shooting stars when it’s at its peak. And the bees really do like it lots. The other neat thing about it is that it retains its shape even after it’s finished blooming. The petals are robust and even as they dry, it remains a ball of shooting stars.

Plus in flight is always neat!

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Approaching the Allium

The allium has just started and that means a lot of contorting to grab shots. But in this one, she’s approaching – and upright, relatively. Love the green and purple together. Really a fascinating plant. Relative of onion/garlic. In addition to the shape of the whole thing and the anthers extending add a delicateness.

Couple of years ago, when in Salt Lake City, I saw a small bungalow whose front yard was full of nothing but these allium. It was tremendous. Didn’t take any pictures and doubt if I could find it again. But for about a week in the spring, that front yard is as magical as it gets.

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On the Allium – again

Some nice detail on this one. Have this plant in a couple of areas of the garden. Last evening I counted seven blossoms in one spot – and eleven bees on those seven.

There are so many varieties of Allium – and, depending on the variety, they bloom from Spring all the way through late Summer. Always dinner for our bee friends somewhere in the garden.

The other thing I like about the Allium is that, unlike so many other plants, when they go to seed, most of them are still interesting – shapes, colors, etc. I like ’em.

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Honeybee on an Allium

That bonus color in the background is a California poppy. A little contrived, maybe, but it’s a neat shot nonetheless. This is one of the later-blooming alliums (allia? alliae? ha!) and kind of spins out and looks raggedy when it starts to release pollen. They’re kin to onions and one of their common names is Ornamental Onion. So many varieties, too, and the pollinators love them when they’re throwing pollen.

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On the Allium

These are such a neat flower while they last…but they’re only good for bees for a week or so. Herrick had something to say about it, generally:

Gather ye Rose-buds while ye may,
    Old Time is still a-flying:
And this same flower that smiles to day,
    To morrow will be dying.

The bees seem to be pretty good at that. And I don’t necessarily see it as contrary to the ant-grasshopper fable. More at: the moment can inform the future if you choose. Nothing momentary about it if you’re mindful.

Great pollen bucket on her, btw.

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Bonus – Allium Blossom for Context/Scale

You know the size of a honeybee – more or less. Compare the little green one I posted as today’s bee. And realize that it’s hanging off of a single anther…and is in the foreground. Tiny bee!

And this one is pretty cool herself. Check out her neck…

Shot this one this afternoon, by the way.

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