Photography & Gardening Go Hand in Hand

By Stan Griep | August 7, 2018
by Stan Griep
August 7, 2018

Stan Griep is an award winning rose and floral photographer.  He has 40+ years of experience growing and photographing roses in the Rocky Mountain Area.  You can enjoy photos of beautiful roses on his blog, The Colorado Rosarian.

Yes indeed folks, a Camera is one fine tool for our gardening. Let me tell you of its uses in the gardens and rose beds.

With a camera we can take pictures of all those pretty blooms in our gardens and rose beds throughout the growing season. When winter comes and the beautiful blooms are not to be found outside, we can pull up the pictures on our computers, I-pads or Smart phones and enjoy seeing them over and over again. Perhaps making some slide shows, set to soul soothing music, that we can enjoy with friends and family or just by ourselves as we let the stresses of the world go by. Oh but there is more, much more!

We can take our best photos and make up calendars with them so that we can enjoy the beauty of the blooms or full gardens all year long. Those same photos can be placed on mugs, shower curtains, rugs, tea pots, metallic prints for some very classy wall art or perhaps greeting cards of one type or another. You can even have your photos made into fingernail appliques so that you have a beautiful bloom right there at your fingertips! The websites that offer such services do a really fine job making your desires come true with your photos on various items.

Our camera can also be used to take pictures of our various garden layouts. If things just did not meet our expectations one year, we can take pictures and use them to plan out what we will do to fix things or make them better for the upcoming growing season. Perhaps some plants got bigger than the information about them stated, now they are too tall or wide for their current location in our gardens. Taking pictures of the gardens helps us remember how things looked and plan out what to do to make things better. Take pictures of the entire area or “full view” pictures of your gardens and rose beds at different times of day. These photos can be used to tell us what the sunlight is doing, perhaps hitting one area of the garden more than others. Or the sunlight hits one area first and then trails along the garden, thus some plants get more time in the sun than others. Some plantings, such as rosebushes, like more sun that other plants. Properly locating our plants in our gardens/rose beds can truly take a pretty garden to the next level awesome garden! Taking pictures of an area you are thinking about making a new garden at different times of day is truly a priceless garden tool. Nothing worse than picking what appears to be a nice place for a garden, planting a tree at the far end, then looking up to see a power line running dead center above that tree”¦.. Forgot to look up”¦. Yes, I admit it, in my younger days I did this very thing. My older gardener friend next door was standing at the little fence between our properties and asked me to look up as I stood proudly by my fine new tree. Embarrassed? Sure was!

Rose with Mites

Our camera can also be used as an early warning alarm against insect or fungal attacks as well. When the garden or rose bed plantings are growing well and the blooms looking oh so beautiful, is a great time to set that camera to a macro setting and take several photos of the blooms and foliage. Then using whatever device you choose to review your photos, blow them up big enough to see the very textures of the blooms petals and the leaves, stems or canes. I have found that many mites and insects in general a truly excellent “Photo Bombers”. Some actually appear to have lined up for the shot and are doing just about everything in the picture except waving Hi! I had this happen with some mites and aphids a couple times. The roses were not showing any signs of distress when I took the shots but certainly would be if left as they currently were headed. Spotting a problem in the gardens early goes a very long way to gaining control of it. The old saying that a garden grows best with the shadow of the gardener in it, is very true indeed. We can spot fungal attacks early as well from such photos. Powdery Mildew, Downy Mildew, Black Spot and Rust to name a few can easily be seen in their earliest stages in such close in photographs. Setting the camera to a macro setting helps assure that whatever we capture with these close-up bloom and foliage shots will be in focus for better identification of a problem beginning.

The garden tool camera does not need to be a top of the line camera. Just pick one that is automatic with some manual settings. The manual settings allow you to adjust the camera as you see fit for close in shots. The automatic feature may or may not be good with various lighting conditions so it is nice to be able to set things manually too and not be fully and only automatic. I like to take shots from various angles moving around the subject rosebush or other plant, as this gives me the best report on the overall well being of the subject. The automatic setting usually works very well for those “full garden” or rose bed shots.

If you have other ways that you use your Garden Tool Camera in your gardening, please do let me know about them. Enjoy your gardens!

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