A couple of days late, but nary a dollar short, here are a few studies of Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare).
From a distance.Closer.Closer still.
The middle one gets my vote, Steve. I love the patterns on the head.
I can’t argue with your choice, Andrew. But I wouldn’t argue if you chose another either. I’m just a peaceful kind of guy. 😎
OK … spill the proverbial beans … I mean could you provide technical data, for especially the last, magnificent, shot. Lens … extension tubes (if so, how long?) … glass diopter filter (if so, how strong) … or extensive cropping? It almost looks like an SEM (scanning electron micrograph) … such clarity. Tripod? What’s up with that shot? D
Beans? No beans. Yes, I used a lens, no filters, extension tubes or diopters. I did crop the edges to get rid of the green background at the borders. Yes, I did use a tripod….I always use a tripod, with the exception of the few times I use lights and sheets to attract moths (I don’t do that anymore as I don’t like interfering with their normal activity, but you never know, I may do it again some night).
OK, the lens is a Canon 180 macro. The clarity is from using a small aperture and very carefully adjusting my position to be as parallel as possible to the flowers and using a plamp between my tripod leg and the stem to be sure it didn’t move. I crop to what looks good, so I am not sure of the exact percent, but around 25% eliminated, as I mentioned, to rid the larger green spots along the edges. As well, I use a variety of digital tools to manipulate contrasts for details/clarity. If I’ve left out anything you’d like to know I’ll be glad to answer anything else.
Ahh .. I’d never heard of a plamp .. looks like that might make a good stocking stuffer! Thanks for the reply … beautiful shot. D
Ummmm……I just contradicted myself. I found a monarch caterpillar this evening and handheld with a flash….which I use as rarely. Image to follow.
Plamps are very useful.
Very nice. We have them too, now. And I learned the english name..
Thanks, Bente. I’m glad I was able to share the name.
You really made those buttons pop, Steve. I hope you’ll be able to sew them back on.
Ordinarily I make buttons pop by doing one of the things that make our life more pleasant and mentioned in Dr. D’s recent post….eating to satiation. Unfortunately I sometimes actually leave simple satiation coughing in my gluttonous dust.
When that happens I have very good friends with a tailoring business.
What an interesting flower. I’ve never seen it. I like the button disc shape and the Fibonacci pattern. Very nice series, Steve.
According to the USDA, it should be found in Iowa, Jim. But I am not sure how widespread. In this area it is quite common and considered invasive. There are medicinal uses, although I think most are not recommended.
Number 2 and 3 are my favourites. Wonderful colour, very nice composition
Thanks, Rod. Those two are more unique, I think.
I like them all. And I spent more time than I should have trying to figure out where I’ve heard of Tansy. It sounds like such a Victorian word — for some reason, I imagine a bouquet of it tied up with velvet ribbons. I wonder if it’s friends with the Pansy? They’d certainly look nice together.
My mother used to make tufted buttons for my dolls’ clothes. I have no idea how she did it, but they looks remarkably like your second photo.
If you have read Shakespeare, which I am guessing you have, then possibly you remember it being mentioned by the bard. That was my first recollection.
How nice that your mother made those buttons for you. Do you still have some of the dolls. That would have such special meaning I would think.
Your tansy photos are so amazing; I love the color, the detail, and the texture you captured. It gives you the same feeling you get when you stand in the garden and take it all in to enjoy.
Thank you, Charlie. I work hard at capturing a sense of the reality of the flowers and am very glad you enjoy that.
We have something akin to tansy’s growing here – not quite a gorgeous as these but they’ve got sweet little yellow button heads and are a deeper mustard colour. I’ve always thought that Tansy would make a nice name for a dog 🙂
Hmmmm….if we have another dog in the future we may have to give that some consideration, Lottie.
Maybe your button-like flowers will show up in one of your paintings? 🙂
There’s a character in the TV Show “Hart of Dixie” named Tansy. She’s blond and pretty too.
Thanks for pointing that out, Judy.
Pingback: Tansy-mustard | Portraits of Wildflowers
I was looking around a bit more, and found this really nice article about tansy — and a confirmation that you’re right. Don’t eat the stuff! It’s toxic. And now I know where I first heard about it. I have a British friend who mentioned it in a blog about old English Easter traditions, including their tansy pudding. She says it’s not made any more, perhaps because of that reputation for toxicity.
Thanks for the link, Linda. An that article may explain why I am not bothered at all by mosquitoes when walking around the pond where I find Tansy. Maybe I should start wearing a Tansy boutonniere?
By the way, the Wikipedia article about tansy at
mentions that it may be effective in repelling ticks.
Maybe I will keep some in my shoe to ward off malaria.
First one, hands down. I love the way the 3-dimensions appear, with lost edges.
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