On Monday, I like to participate in Sally’s mobile photography challenge, open to anyone who takes photos with a non-traditional camera, as my phone/camera goes with me everywhere.  The first Monday’s theme is “Nature” and, having been to Yosemite, my natural tendency was to go with something spectacular from there.  After all, what isn’t spectacular there?

But, southern California having a very different climate from that of the Chicago area, nature is also everywhere in the city even now, a juxtaposition I enjoyed greatly, as with the exotic beauty of this bird of paradise bloom against the neutral-colored background of a Spanish-themed apartment complex: city and nature, striking and subdued. Perhaps if you live there, their beauty becomes passé, but to winter-jaded eyes, they were a glorious sight.

© janet m. webb 2017

  1. happyface313 says:

    🙂 They are beautiful!
    I got some for my birthday, but they didn’t want to open up. And they were soooo expensive here in winter. Now that I see this one it will compensate for the ones that preferred to stay stuck in their “coats” (I guess it was too cold) 🙂
    Have a beautiful start into the new week 🙂

    • They certainly are beautiful and they grow everywhere in southern California. I wonder whether people there take their beauty for granted.

      Have a marvelous Monday!


      • happyface313 says:

        🙂 I guess they do.
        When we used to live in Santa Monica ages ago, they grew in our garden like weeds. They were just there and we were used to them. Today they bring back memories and I really appreciate them, when I’m lucky to have one or two in my home.
        You have a very HAPPY Monday too, dear Janet! 🙂

      • I think if something is around all the time, no matter how beautiful, it’s natural to take it for granted much of the time. I’m glad it brings back some lovely memories.

  2. Janet, welcome back, your image is an example of the visual joy of the warm climate that supports such beauties year round. It lifts my spirits too. Happy Photo Challenge.

    • Thanks for the welcome, Sally. Being in such a different natural place reminds me once again of the beauty and diversity of land in the United States. What a blessing and what a blessing to be able to visit and enjoy some of those diverse places!

  3. andy1076 says:

    The colours are incredible…! 😍

  4. That particular bloom is gorgeous! I love them when they just bloom and are fresh, vibrant, and as you said, “glorious!”.

    I don’t tire of seeing them, but then they aren’t growing everywhere up here in Nor Cal. 🙂

  5. lisakunk says:

    Lovely. Can’t beat nature’s creativity.

  6. Helen C says:

    Beautiful flower, Janet. Your post reminds me one of my business trips to San Diego. Seeing so many bird of paradise, I felt I was in Heaven. Later I was happy to find out that my neighbor planted one, but sadly it never produce any flower. I guess it doesn’t like our cold weather.
    Thanks for such cheerful photo. Have a wonderful day.

  7. Allan G. Smorra says:

    I love this photo, Janet. We have some of these planted on the side of our house and we never tire of looking at them. These plants provide quite a display of color in the afternoon shade.

    • How fortunate you are to have these beauties to look at daily. It sounds as thought you have quite a nice garden, one of the perks of living where you do, at least for length of enjoyment.


      • Allan G. Smorra says:

        There are lots of perks in this zipcode, Janet, and we are grateful for them.

  8. joey says:

    So gorgeous! My mother grows them in her tropical abode 🙂 I always ooh and ahh 🙂

    • Where’s her tropical abode, Joey? One of the things I like about southern California is the plethora of flowers. Not sure it makes up for the things I don’t like, but for just visiting, I’m good. 🙂


      • joey says:

        My mother lives in south Florida. My eldest daughter and her family live in the panhandle. I hate all of Florida, as I hate heat and humidity, palm trees, sun, and bugs — but people I love live there, so sometimes I go. It does make for beautiful, more exotic garden viewing.

  9. I love the birds of paradise plant, but I haven’t mustered up the willingness to buy one yet. I actually saw those for sale in Chicago at Gethsemane’s last weekend.

    With all the grey we have had here in Chicago for the last week and a half maybe I should reconsider. I can’t wait for summer time in Chicago.

    • Out in Naperville, we’re looking forward to it, too. 🙂 Grey today and probably for the next few days, but it’s just the beginning of April, so we may have a bit of a wait yet for lots of flowers. Nice to meet a fellow Chicago-arean. 🙂


  10. Angeline M says:

    Beautiful image, Janet. These are my favorite flower; I lived in SoCal for several years and never tired of seeing them, nor do I now whenever I see them.

  11. Emilio Pasquale says:

    I think people in California take everything for granted. Few probably even know a bird of paradise is not a bird! 🙂

    • At least they don’t take everything for granite, which would be much harder (so to speak.) But there is a lot of pavement! 🙂

      Speaking of birds of paradise, did you know there’s a song called “May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose?” I jest not! Here’s the TinyURL for it: http://tinyurl.com/l3oj9u5. And how DOES TinyURL do that anyway? (I won’t ask my husband, as he probably knows and would tell me in detail I wouldn’t understand.) 🙂


  12. Gorgeous colours

  13. bythebriny says:

    Those colours are so beautiful and exotic to my eyes.

  14. Lignum Draco says:

    A beautiful burst of rainbow colours. We notice more things that are out of the ordinary to us.

    • That’s very true. I sometimes try to remember what a scene looked like when I first saw it or imagine if I were seeing it for the first time. It can be hard to do, but interesting. Coming home after a long vacation can have the same unfamiliar feeling for at least a moment or two.


  15. Amy says:

    Love the beautiful flower, so special and colorful!

  16. We love our birds of paradise here in NorCal. There are some along the streets so warm and bight welcoming us home. Great competition.

  17. Joanne Sisco says:

    These winter-weary eyes agree completely, Janet. Any and all splashes of colour are making my heart sing right now. GREAT photo!!

    • Thanks so much, Joanne. We need all that color right now, don’t we? Rain has been pelting down most of the day and since I got back from CA, it’s been mostly grey and cloudy, although I’m happy to see that the daffodils didn’t freeze during the last stretch of below-freezing temperatures. Now if the rain would just stop and the sun come out…