Saturday, April 2, 2011

Don't Blink!

Or you'll miss the pink.

That's how it feels, anyway,  for pink lovers who live in the Land of the Ten Day Spring. You see, for about two weeks around this time of year, the south turns into a Pink ParadiseAzaleas of every shade imaginable burst into bloom in perfect concert with the flowering dogwoods.

It. is. beautiful.
 It's also fleeting.

And this year, I nearly missed it.

Meaning, of course, that I almost missed capturing it with the shiny red Kodak.

We had an early spring in these parts. The pear trees bloomed two full weeks earlier than usual, and it looked as if our dogwoods and azaleas were on the same fast track.  I had the Kodak poised and ready, but then... it started to rain.

                 And it rained...
                                              and rained...
                                                                     and rained some more.

Any days that weren't rainy were cold and gloomy.  I tried to capture it anyway, but the pink exposion just doesn't pop against gloomy gray.


I was about to give up hope, when I woke up this morning, and the sun was shining, just in the nick of time. Too bad the drama in the above photo was already gone. As I said, don't blink.

Never fear, though. There are plenty more yet blooming around here.

Since you've already seen the pear tree view from my front porch, I thought you might want to see  the pink explosion in the piney stick forest.

I'd like to see a pink explosion in the piney stick forest too. Unfortunately, that's not our piney stick forest. Ours has exactly one azalea, and it's already droopy. Who wants to see a droopy azalea?

Instead, I took a little tour around town
stopping traffic and crouching in bushes at will
to bring you the azaleas of 2011.

That hot pink azalea is my favorite shade of all,
but it's certainly not the only shade.

There's a purply pink magenta

And this varigated one

And this medium pink, 
which isn't even the lightest shade of azalea.
 There's a pastel one that hasn't fully bloomed yet.

It has huge blossoms, just like those white ones.
The lighter the color, the bigger the blossoms seem to be.

White azaleas flank the lawn of the local botantical garden.
There's a wedding here today. Won't it be lovely?

Here they have native azaleas, too...

Kind of freaky looking, aren't they?
I think I prefer the more common  kind.

As for the dogwoods, I'm just the opposite.
While I love the lacey white ones,
my favorite ones are the less common pinks.
Have you ever seen anything more lovely?

I don't think I have.
I think the pink dogwood gets the grand prize.

I'm sharing this with the gals at Pink Saturday.
And since pink azaleas and dogwoods are some of  my favorite things,
I'm bopping on over to Bargain Hunting and Chatting with Laurie
  for her  Favorite Things party as well.

Just call me a party girl today.


Custom Comforts said...

Well, no wonder nothing will bloom here ~ you all have sucked spring right out of the north and enjoying it 2 weeks early while we're 2 weeks late. Now I finally get it why the forsythia won't even open their blossoms :) Your pictures are just gorgeous. I have been in Charleston, SC when the azeleas were in bloom and there is nothing like it. Thank you for sharing.

Denise said...

Oh how I love this pink explosion. Thanks for sharing all of your wonderful photos. Some of my azaleas are just reaching full bloom. I guess they're location doesn't get as much sun as some others. My iris are just now blooming too which is weird because they usually bloom way before my azaleas. Maybe all the rain this week? Loved this so very much. Thanks sis.

Nellie's Cozy place said...

Oh Debbie...........
Loved this post, all these shots are simply glorious, and I want to be transported there!! lol
I absolutely love azaleas, course, I absolutely love just about any flower, never met a flower I didn't like for the most part!! lol
Thank you so much for taking the time to take all those wonderful pics, I so enjoyed it, and when I need a eye candy lift, I am gonna remember the name of this post and revisit.
Hope you have a great weekend.

I love when we get rain but I really do not like what it does to the pretty flowers......when I remember, I usually go cut them and bring them in the house to enjoy, cause once heavy rain starts you lose them anyway. So might as well enjoy them a little.
Blessings hon,

Nellie's Cozy place said...

Oh yea, like your new blog look as well.
Have a sweet day!

Crickit said...

Beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing a little "pink" piece of your world with us!

Shabbychicdiva said...

Beautiful! Happy Pink Saturday. ♥Winona

Janette@Janette's Sage said...

Oh how Benjamin would be saying, "so, so, so, so beautiful" Thanks for sharing now I want to get in my car and come see it all.
Enjoyed...what a great way to start my day!

♥♥ Willa ♥♥ said...

Thanks for giving me a glimps of colorful Spring!!!

Here is my Pink Saturday#1, as I'm joining PS for the first time.

Kathleen said...

Wow, so so beautiful! I love cherry blossoms and azaleas. In fact I just love flowers full stop. I would love to see that wedding take place, what a wonderful setting for it.

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Looks great Debbie! We won't see that beautiful color for a couple more weeks-enjoy:@)

Ms.Daisy said...

Thank you for "stopping traffic and crouching in bushes" for us to enjoy all this beauty! We are so far behind that I don't think we'll have Spring at all this year and just zoom into summer! Ugh! What a gorgeous place for a wedding. I needed this pick me up today but at least it has stopped raining here.


FrouFrouBritches said...

OH MY GRACIOUS! Your pictures are AMAZING! I desperately need a shiny red Kodak. I loooooove the pink azaleas blooming in the piney stick forest, even if it's not your piney stick forest! It's so gorgeous! I've never seen pink dogwoods before. Beautiful! You're right about the natives ones. They're a little scary looking to me. Thanks for sharing.

Christine said...

Seeing your fabulous pictures, I feel like I didn't miss a thing.
Here in the Pacific Northwest, we missed the pink explosion. To much rain.

Great pictures!

Joan said...

Beautiful photos, Debbie. I went out a bit ago to take a photo of the dogwoods - I'm afraid I waited a bit too late as their blooms are already falling to the ground.

I love the azaleas also.

Elaine said...

I have been in the south a few times when it is all a be-dazzing pink. I saw one lonely crocus blooming here in my flower bed. Thanks for sharing these beautiful pictures with us..and I am a new follower

Anita said...

Debbie, Debbie, what can I say...gorgeous photos!! I LOVE azaleas! I bought like 100 of them over time when they were $1.98 when we first moved in here because it's all I could afford. Mine are not blooming yet, but we are a month early on some things. Love that shot of the tall trees with azaleas underneath. Thanks for stopping by! I have not been around much and I miss seeing you:-)

Kathleen said...

Debbie, that looks so lovely! So green and then the vibrant flowers, beautiful. It gives me hope!
Have a wonderful Sunday!

Patti Hanan said...

I love flowers and it brought joy to my day to look at these gorgeous pictures! Thank you!

Graceful said...

All I can say is wow! Especially that first picture through the!

Angel said...

These photos are all SOOOO gorgeous! And the thought of you crouching in bushes to capture the beauty with your shiny red kodak - well I had to giggle. You are so sweet to go to all that trouble so we could enjoy the grand display of spring in your neck of the woods. So glad I came here today just in time to see the pink. :) Blessings!

Dayle said...

Kudos for the Kodak! Pics are fab!!

Rettabug said...

Terrific photos, Debbie! Don't you wish azaleas lasted a wee bit longer? They are SO beautiful! We had lots of them in front of our old house. I should take a drive by just to enjoy them & maybe capture a photo. We had white & pink peonies, too. I'm SOOOOOOOOO anxious for Spring to arrive up here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Picket said...

Ohhhhhhhh I love it!!!!! My favorite blooming thing is the azalea...I just slow down and sigh when we drive by some....these pics are gorgeous girl...oh I'd be in heaven surrounded by such beauty...thanks so much for sharing and thanks for coming by...hope you have a glorious Sunday..Picket

Denise Marie said...

A girl after my own heart. We got engaged during the Dogwood Festival and Azalea trail 18 yrs ago. Nothing more lovely than your shots of the fleeting moments. I think mine are severely overgrown Indian Hawthorn shrubs?? lol

At The Picket Fence said...

Hi friend! We actually had a pink dogwood at our old house and I just loved it! All of these photos are gorgeous but my favorite would have to be the one from the botanical garden. Just lovely! Thanks for sharing these with us!

one step at a time said...

How beautiful, I wish we had flowers like yours!

Gayle said...

I'm glad you posted azalea pics. I intended to, but never did. Always love this brief season of pink. Yours are gorgeous.

Sonja said...

Unbeleivably beautiful, arent' they?

My daughter called me from Costco the other day and said... 'what did you tell us about azaleas??'... She said there are the most gorgeous flowers here today but I remember something you said...

I said, yep, they are the most beautiful flowers you'll ever see for about 2-3 weeks, and then THEY ARE GONE!...

She was so disappointed... so I think I'll send her your blog this afternoon and she can feast her eyes on the pictures of azaleas while they bloom. Just good for my heart this Sunday afternoon! :)

Carol said...

Beautiful, Debbie. Glorious! even if fleeting. We are slooowwwllllyyyy enjoying the transition to spring.
As in 3 crocus blooms come and gone and the daffodils half bloomed!
Hope you have a wonderful week!

Kelli said...

My Azaleas just opened their lovely petals. If they look anything like the ones in your neck of the woods, um piney forest, I'm in for a spectacular flowery show!

gnee @ Singing With Birds said...

I'm envious of those of you who live on the East Coast and are ablaze in pink each Spring. I remember in NY how glorious it was. I'm getting homesick for the Macy's Flower Show!

Thanks for sharing your pink...we are rainy and warm than cool again, and working hard to get a new yard in. I am missing my birds too!!!!

Susan (My Place to Yours) said...

I was "sold" on azaleas during the time we lived in Louisiana. They grew so well there. Unfortunately, not so much here in E. Tennessee ... so I'm loving your pictures! They are a really nice treat here at the beginning of the week. I like your "gray" pic, too!

xinex said...

I love flowers and this is just gorgeous, Debbie. Your shots are fabulous and the azaleas are wonderful. I hate to see them go but they are pretty much falling on the gorund in our area now. Our peaches bloomed really early too. The dogwoods are so pretty!..Christine

bj said...

OMYGOODNESS...these are just breathtaking. So beautiful....
O and I have a shiny red Kodak, too. :))

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Beautiful photos of beautiful Azaleas. Ours haven't bloomed just yet, but they do have buds. Hopefully they will put on a show as pretty as the ones you pictured. Ours don't bloom long either, but when they do, it is one of the few things blooming, and I get so excited to see them. Thanks for sharing these for favorite things. They are favs of mine too. laurie

Sharon Kirby said...

How very lovely - I'm pink with envy!!

You chased away some of my gloomy gray - and brought the beauty of God's creation all the way here to California - thanks for that!!


The Quintessential Magpie said...

Hi, Debbie!

I'm checking in late for PS because I was tied up with all sorts of insanity (see post above)!

Love these gorgeous pinks. I have the Formossa azaleas (deep pink ones), the George Tabors (variegated ones), and the medium pink ones (don't know the name, but love them best... if they are that sort of salmony pink). Your trees are also magnificent. Don't you love the colors of spring? Nothing prettier!

Happy PS to you...


Sheila :-)

Fishtail Cottage said...

Hi there! Found your blog through another gardening friend of mine & would love to have you join us for Cottage Flora Thursday' party link will be up later this evening - always so fun to meet other gardeners! xoox, tracie


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