Evening Gardening

While I was out for dinner between 5 & 6 at Parrillada Androvetto Atenas for my weekly steak at the the place in Atenas with the best meats in my opinion, my gardener Cristian came to do the little job I had requested and then sent me a WhatsApp cellphone photo of his work since I was not there. Ahhhh! The joys of being “Retired in Costa Rica!”

red.anthurium.flowers-450x540On the back side of my house the tile sidewalk continues alongside a concrete retainer wall with a narrow flower bed totally in the shade. Much of what was there had died out and I asked for a re-planting, just some interesting green plants that grow in the shade (sombra). The first photo below is the one Cristian sent me and the second one I took from the other direction after I got home about 6:15 when it is dark here. (Both sunrise and sunset year-around here is between 5:15 and 6:15, meaning 12 hour days and 12 hour nights year-around.) I did have my garden lights on which helped with the photo.  🙂 And he not only put a variety of green and colored leaves but also included two flowers, two Anthuriums! Now the one bare spot I had to see when I walk through my garden is again beautiful and will “fill out” or “fill in” as the plants grow. Another beautiful rainy season in Costa Rica!   🙂

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The photo Cristian sent me of his plantings
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My photo from other direction in the dark with lights on.

“Flowers… are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty out values all the utilities in the world.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

¡Pura Vida!

 

P.S.

I recently discovered on our limited Costa Rica Netflix a fun BBC gardening show call “Big Dreams Small Spaces” with the famous English gardener Monty Don helping people turn ugly little yards into beautiful gardens of their dreams. A fun diversion! Check it out!   🙂

Garden Butterflies

 

I embrace emerging experience. I participate in discovery. I am a butterfly. I am not a butterfly collector. I want the experience of the butterfly. 

~ William Stafford

See my Butterfly & Moth Gallery

¡Pura Vida!

FLOWERS de Selva Verde

God’s artistry is different in each and every little blossom and so I continue to show photos of flowers from almost everywhere I visit. Enjoy the photos below as what I call “Nature As Art!” – the name of my short-lived photo business in the states.

Selva Verde Flowers

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Considering a Move to Costa Rica?

If you are one of those readers considering living here or retiring here, I strongly encourage you to get acquainted with the ARCR, Association of Residents of Costa Rica, who will become your best help as you consider and then plan for a move here, with their two-day seminar an absolute necessity for your preparation. In the meantime you might want to consider joining now and receiving the bi-monthly digital magazine El Residente. Hoping that link gets you to the current edition without membership, so you can see all the interesting & helpful articles other expats here write every two months.

And by the way, for those keeping up with me I got back from Selva Verde Wednesday afternoon with a doctor appointment Thursday afternoon and back into life in Atenas when not on a trip. I’m also finishing up my reports on Selva Verde, a good hotel/lodge for nature lovers!

¡Pura Vida!

Crimson-fronted Parakeets

My breakfast treat on my terrace this morning was this pair of Crimson-fronted Parakeets passing through on their way up the hill – most usually fly over rather than stop. They first started pecking into the trunk of my big palm but the Clay-colored Thrushes with a nest in that tree chased them away to my neighbor’s big palm where I made these photos. Here’s just 5 of many shots made:

Crimson-fronted Parakeets

 

I still get more excited by the more colorful birds like these.

“Color is a power which directly influences the soul.”

~Wassily Kandinsky

You might also enjoy the other birds in my BIRDS Photo Gallery

¡Pura vida!

Monteverde: The Book

IMG_9570-A-WEBI finished it last week but was waiting for Blurb to offer one of their discounts before I ordered my copies since I have to buy at least one copy to offer it for sale. That’s business!  🙂  I usually get about 4 copies, sending one to my host lodge/hotel and one to the birding guide I used and I’m saving a copy for some local library here in Atenas but I haven’t found the right one yet. Long story.

By including some photos from my 2016 visit to Monteverde the book has 123 photos on 78 pages with about 45 species of birds plus other animals and nature. I’m pleased with this photo book available in my bookstore at:

https://www.blurb.com/b/9427058-monteverde

FREE PAGE-BY-PAGE PREVIEW ELECTRONICALLY

Or click this cover image:

Monteverde

“My wish is to stay always like this, living quietly in a corner of nature.”
~Claude Monet

Thanks to Monet for my subtitle inspiration!

¡Pura Vida!

Monteverde Gallery Completed

Finally, all the photos made during a week in Monteverde, Costa Rica have been sorted, culled, labeled and organized into the few best in each category as one of my “Trip Galleries” labeled as:

2019 April 7-13 — Monteverde, Costa Rica

Now I will start working on the photo book about Monteverde and making more photos around here as I report on things in Atenas like the progress on our central park remodeling and the climate fair here next week with our annual oxcart parade – always something happening!    🙂

Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.

~John Muir

¡Pura Vida!

Butterflies & Moths Monteverde

I saw one really cool and new-to-me moth at Santa Elena Reserve, two butterflies at Selvatura Park and all the rest were at Monteverde Lodge & Gardens where they have a really nice small butterfly garden indoors. There is one dining table for up to 4 people that can be scheduled for a private Butterfly Dinner!   🙂   Kind of neat! And two of the moths I photographed on my little private room terrace/patio.

Selvatura claims to have the largest butterfly garden in Central America and the huge dome looks like it but this trip it was horrible with only two (2) species of butterflies. There is a Monteverde Butterfly Garden operated by a couple of nature lovers but I did not go this time. Three years ago it was great! There were a lot of butterflies, especially blue morpho, flying around in all four reserves, but difficult to photograph there.

Butterflies & Moths

See also my Butterflies & Moths Gallery – a growing collection!

 

I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man.      ~Zhuangzi

¡Pura Vida!

Monteverde Lodge & Gardens

One of the better lodges I have visited yet in Costa Rica even though older. The service is superb with all the staff knowing my name and calling me “Charlie” everytime they see me. Food is some of the best yet in Costa Rica and the grounds are a part of the Cloud Forest both their gardens and their forest trails with lots of birds and other wildlife to photograph when not out in one of the official reserves. A great place for a nature lover to stay. See their Website for more information. And below is my little slide show of first day shots I did not have time to post yesterday:

Monteverde Lodge Slideshow

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This morning I had a guide for birding in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve and hope to report on it by this evening. Note that the 4 birds I photographed here on hotel property yesterday afternoon were posted last night and two were “lifers” for me. A good place !   🙂

And you history buffs will be interested in how Monteverde was started and settled by Quakers from the states in the 1940’s. See The History of Monteverde. There is no other place in the world like Monteverde!

¡Pura Vida!

Monteverde

I arrived today at Monteverde Lodge & Gardens, a really nice hotel and restaurant that I will really enjoy when not on a birding hike in one of the reserves. Tomorrow I will post more photos of the hotel. The above featured photo is looking out of my room over my deck hammock into one of the many gardens here. And below are the first four birds I photographed in the hot sun this afternoon on a hotel trail:

¡Pura Vida!

COSTA RICA NEWS

34 Charging Stations for Electric Cars

Costa Rica announced Tuesday that 34 fast charging points for electric cars will be in operation this year. They will be part of a network of charging stations the government plans to expand in the upcoming years.

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Volcano ultramarathon set to begin in Costa Rica

A special volcano & rainforest 200k  run for you runners!

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Tourism Board invests $1.5 million in lifeguard program for Costa Rican beaches