Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Photographing Ghosts In The Garden


ghost plant grouping also known as monotropa translucent little flower with glow of sunset orange on it
Monotropa uniflora

Photographing Ghosts in the Garden is creepy if you consider the subject in the lens is found only in dark woodlands and is known by such morbid names as:
Convulsion Root
Corpse plant
Death plant
Fairy smoke
Ghost flower
Here, on the Island, we mostly call it Indian Pipe (in reference to its pipe-like shape). And far from creepy, I find it a fascinating and cheeky little plant whose ménage à trois existence between trees, fungus and itself is more than a a little beguiling. A botanist's description of the plant as "a waxy white saprophyte of deep forest shade" is ooooh so hauntingly lovely! It evokes a film noir femme fatale as spoken by a hard boiled detective like Bogie or Mitchum as Marlowe...
"... she 'was a waxy white saprophyte of deep forest shade' that haunted the mind of every man in the room. She was a flower alright, a ghost flower, and that spelled corpse plant to the man who did her wrong. And that ain't no fairy smoke to a tough gumshoe like me."

12 comments:

nancybond said...

They look a bit like miniature E.T.'s! :-)

Philip Bewley said...

I so much enjoyed this delicious post. You have such a great sense of fun. Cheeky! I like it!
Also, very interesting about the monotropa...it would be fun to come across this in the forest. We will be on the lookout for this now that you opened our eyes to it. I have to admit, this will have a film noir reference for me from now on.
;)
Regards,
Philip

West Coast Island Gardener said...

Nancy_
too funny - I totally see that now, too.

They do look like they're from another planet = huddled about - waiting for the mothership.

Shall I lend them a cel phone to call home?

regards

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Philip - not Marlowe is it?

So glad you dropped by my blog -she said in a voice so husky it could pull a sled.


regards

Viooltje said...

What an amazing piece of work you are! Making our day with this little bunch of mischievous saprophyte buggers. For a reason I have not come up with yet, they remind me of the poor lil fellas from a video to Moby's song: Lordy don't leave me, all by myself ...
Then again, when I take a closer look, I see traces of Borg presence... Anyway, I prefer your version. Very artistic and very Shauna-like!

West Coast Island Gardener said...

Violet -

You made me gurgle my coffee with a giggle by your comment -

Where are my toothpicks and paper to make little hello signs;)

There is definitely a hive-mind thing going on with these little borgy shaped bits. I think they are saying...
'Resistance to Violet's wit is futile" :}

My Mother's Garden said...

Hello~
I must say that reading your writing is like eating a delicious meal!
I have always admired those that have a special knack with writing.
I'll be back for sure!
Photos are great too!
Happy day~
Karrita

nefaeria said...

Beautiful! And this blog is awesome!

Cheers,

nefaeria

Northern Shade said...

Smoke hung heavy in the forest, as thick as the lies that she wove. Her sultry charm pulled me closer, casting a spell. Was she a helpful forest denizen, or a bewitching temptress? I wasn't sure which, but I knew I'd have fun finding out.

Linda Lunda said...

That is a fantastic photo!
Thank you for stopping by my blogg yesterday!
I have been bussy all weekend .... otherwise I would have been here to comment earlier..
Linda

daizyblue said...

Love your headers and footers...you have a lovely eye for design.

~Montana cowgirl

West Coast Island Gardener said...

Karrita
So glad you dropped by.

Loved reading your sentiment about "My Mother's Garden".

I often wondered how many generations of mothers go back in the legacy of my garden as I potter about in it.

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Nefaeria -

Your blog has turned me on to so many wonderful things!

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Northern Shade -

where can I buy your novel?;) Even the name Northern Shade sounds like a bloody good page turner.

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Linda -

Absolutely fab ceramics!
Regards to the land of Tre Kronor

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Howdy Cowgirl -

Thanks for mosey-ing on over and takin' a gander at my headers.

Regards to all yer Missoulians

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Trava said...

This is great info to know.