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Gardening-tip:



Keep that Parsley Coming

Parsley is a biennial, often grown as an annual. Plants prefer full sun, but will survive in partial shade.

Parsley can be picked fresh throughout the season, but for use in the winter, cut the leaves in the fall, and dry or freeze them.


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Contest & Prizes | BEST GARDEN PHOTOGRAPHY WINNERS 2008

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OUR 2008 WINNERS!

Winners Will Be Notified Personally and Prizes Awarded.
Everyone who entered should be proud, you all did great!

Judge: Clive Nichols - General Comments About 2008 Photography Contest:

Choosing the winners in each category has been a long and difficult task for me. Overall I would say that the standard of entries was high, with many good pictures sent in to the categories covering birds, animals, pets, butterflies and insects in the garden. It is good to see that so many of you are prepared to venture out early and late when the light is often at its best. The shots that stood out for me were those where the photographer had either closed in and filled the frame with a subject, had highlighted a particularly unusual angle of a subject, or had used lighting and depth of field in a more creative way.


 


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  2008 GRAND PRIZE WINNER

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Cat In The Garden


Judge's Comments:

I love this shot. The lighting is beautiful and soft, the pink blossom creates a lovely backdrop and the low angle is well chosen. Dazyl has captured perfectly the cat and its wide eyes. Lovely colours, sympathetic lighting, a stunning and very commercial image - a real winner.






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  CATEGORY:
ANNUALS

2008 Winner
Annuals

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Sunflower Field


Judge's Comments:

This striking picture really caught my eye. The yellow sunflowers are strongly lit and are complimented by the rich blue sky and pure white clouds. Dazyl has chosen to move in very close to the sunflower whilst using a wide angle lens to take in the sky and other flowers nearby, thereby giving the composition a really strong feeling of depth.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Annuals

Crystal Schoonover
Strawn, TX, USA

Picture: Snapdragons my children and
I saw while on a walk one evening


Judge's Comments:

This is technically a very strong, well composed and focussed image with lots of good strong colour.






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  CATEGORY:
BIRDS IN THE GARDEN

2008 Winner
Birds In The Garden

Jarvis Walker
Tampa, FL, USA

Picture: Beautiful Duck Nest


Judge's Comments:

Most of the photographs in the bird category showed images of the birds themselves, but this image by Jarvis Walker shows that sometimes the least obvious choice of subject can still make a great photo opportunity. The nest, crammed full of creamy eggs, is beautifully lit by soft overcast daylight. Jarvis has filled the frame with the subject and this in turn has strengthened the composition.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Birds In The Garden

Daniel R. Lindquist
Salem, OR, USA

Picture: A male Calypte Anna pausing to hover
for a shot displaying his best colors in hopes of
impressing a Lady Anna. (Anna's hummingbird)


Judge's Comments:

There were a lot of humming bird pictures sent in but this was certainly one of the best - I love the brilliant colour of the birds throat and the soft peachy coloured background - a really striking image.






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  CATEGORY:
BULBS, TUBERS, CORMS, RHIZOMES

2008 Winner
Bulbs, Tubers, Corms, Rhizomes

Diane Drinsinger
Edgar, WI, USA

Picture: Crocus In Morning Dew


Judge's Comments:

Crocus are very difficult subjects to photograph. Not only do they need to be captured just as they are starting to open up, but very often they are damaged by wind and rain even before they have opened. The lighting needs to be right too - bright but diffused to enable the viewer to look inside the flowers. Diane has chosen exactly the right moment and subject. The flowers and the light are just perfect and the pin sharp focus and great depth of field means that you feel you can almost reach out and touch the flowers themselves.






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  CATEGORY:
BUTTERFLIES AND INSECTS

2008 Winner
Butterflies and Insects

Susan Weber
Little Ferry, NJ, USA

Picture: A wood wasp, in midair over my deck, looking for a piece of wood to land on


Judge's Comments:

Wow wow wow. This was one of the most difficult categories from which to choose a winner. The standard of photography throughout was very high indeed. One shot however stood out from the crowd and it was this amazing image of a wood wasp in midair. The dark background and strong lighting makes the wasp stand out from its background and the movement in the wings is captured superbly - an absolutely superb picture. I picked the wasp because it was very different from most of the other entries - personally I like pictures which break all the rules or look at things from an unusual or different perspective - and this picture, though not technically the best picture I have ever seen, was very unusual.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Butterflies and Insects

Karen Bean
Ottumwa, IA, USA

Picture: A friendly Praying Mantis with "BIG" eyes


Judge's Comments:

I absolutely love the way that Karen has used a macro lens to get in close to this amazing creature. The composition is very powerful with the mantis coming into the frame from the right hand side and the head looks like that of an alien.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Butterflies and Insects

Garry Walter
Highland Heights, KY, USA

Picture: Dragons at Dawn


Judge's Comments:

It is the wonderful dawn backlighting, silhouetting the dragonflies, that really set this image apart. By making the effort to get up early and get in the right position, shooting into the sun, Garry has taken a great picture.






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  CATEGORY:
FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

2008 Winner
Fruits and Vegetables

Marlene Bell
Shafter, CA, USA

Picture: Pomegranate pair in the sunlight


Judge's Comments:

When I saw this picture of pomegranates I instantly wanted to reach out to pick them. What makes the picture work for me is the fact that the fruits are sharp, the background is nice and dark and the fruits themselves are beautifully lit by rich sunlight.






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  CATEGORY:
PERENNIALS

2008 Winner
Perennials

Sandra Calderon
Concord, Ontario, Canada

Picture: Reliability of a perennial bloom


Judge's Comments:

This was one of the few pictures in this category of a plant combination. It works really well mainly because of the soft, but warm lighting and the harmony of the flowers - the rick pink of the cosmos and the bluey purple of the perovskia (?). The image is pin sharp with good depth of field.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Perennials

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Not sure what kind of plant. The photograph is a macro of it.


Judge's Comments:

This is a very strong image. The bright touch of green in the background sets off the rich orange of the gazania itself and Dazyl has been careful to focus on the centre of the flower which has been cleverly placed off centre. The picture could have been improved even more I feel if the depth of field was slightly less, blowing the background completely out of focus.






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  CATEGORY:
PETS OR ANIMALS IN THE GARDEN

2008 Winner
Pets Or Animals In The Garden

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Cat in The Garden


Judge's Comments:

I love this shot. The lighting is beautiful and soft, the pink blossom creates a lovely backdrop and the low angle is well chosen. Dazyl has captured perfectly the cat and its wide eyes.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Pets Or Animals In The Garden

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Sometimes Geckos surprise me
whenever they appear


Judge's Comments:

This is a superb shot. The focus on the gecko is absolutely right and the shallow depth of field and simple curve of the leaf make for a very graphic composition - well done

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Pets Or Animals In The Garden

Garry Walter
Highland Heights, KY, USA

Picture: Pet Tree Frog "George"
I shoot George a lot in our garden!


Judge's Comments:

Technically, this is another superb photograph. The way that Garry has captured the the fog in mid air - yet still gripping the twig with one finger, is outstanding. The lighting is also well executed.






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  CATEGORY:
ROSES

2008 Winner
Roses

Robert Elliott
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Picture: Warm Yellow Rose - Shallow depth of
field of and overwhelming warm colour


Judge's Comments:

This was by far the best shot in the category. Using a macro lens and a shallow depth of field, Robert has completely filled the frame with the creamy centre of this pale lemon rose. Placing the centre of the rose off to the right of the picture makes the composition more interesting and the soft light shows off the delicate petals to perfection.






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  CATEGORY:
TREES, SHRUBS, VINES

2008 Winner
Trees, Shrubs, Vines

Dazyl Young
Bacolod City, Philippines

Picture: Beautiful Plumeria


Judge's Comments:

This striking image, superbly executed by Dazyl Young, really blew me away. The background is deep black, which shows the beautifully lit pale blue and yellow flowers off to perfection. The depth of field is spot on and the image is pin sharp.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Trees, Shrubs, Vines

Robert Elliott
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Picture: Banksia side - Gradation from the soft green edges to deep orange stems with purple and green hints in the background - it looks like they’re whispering to each other.


Judge's Comments:

The subject is really unusual and Robert has shown it off to its best by closing in on the incredible structure of the banksia. The colours really compliment each other and the depth of field and soft lighting make for a really strong image - well done.

 


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  2008 Honorable Mention
Trees, Shrubs, Vines

Rob Waterman
Mesa, AZ, USA

Picture: I am constantly surrounded by so many different plants and trees in the valley. I turned around one afternoon and noticed what a contrast this shot was of 2 different specimans, and how one is native to the area and the other is very much a transplant from another climate but manages to survive here. It seems the two somehow compliment each other.


Judge's Comments:

I love the graphic quality of this shot, the deep blue sky and the interesting low angle chosen by Rob.











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