Lonely Lotuses

The American Lotus is one of several aquatic plant species seen on the surface of Lake Martin. Our most recent visit to the lake was at the end of the flowering season, and most of the lotus blossoms had long withered away. We saw a few late survivors, but they looked very lonely.

The photo below was taken from the end of the peninsula near the boat ramp, as described in earlier posts. The fact that the approximate range of diameters of the circular leaves of the American Lotus is one to two feet gives a scale to the image.


Canon EOS 7D (600mm, f/8, 1/640 sec, ISO100) American Lotus on Lake Martin

Standing at the end of the small fishing pier at the north shore of Lake Martin, I noticed another “lonely lotus” in a surrounding very different from the one above. I decided to use this opportunity to check out the complete range of my new Tamron 150-600mm lens. The photo below was taken with the lens fully contracted.


Canon EOS 7D (150mm, f/14, 1/640 sec, ISO2000) Another lotus near cypress trees

I then took a photo of the same scene with the lens fully extended, reducing the apparent distance to the flower to one fourth that in the previous photo. I like the contrast in these images between the bright, delicate lotus flower and the huge, dark cypress trees dressed in dull gray Spanish Moss.


Canon EOS 7D (600mm, f/14, 1/640 sec, ISO500) Closer shot of above lotus

Herbicide has been used to control the growth of American Lotus (and other vegetation) on Lake Martin as recently as 2012. I am sure there are good ecological reasons to do so, but on this day it was hard for me to think of these beautiful plants as nuisances.

(Note: The photos in this post are uncropped except for uneven edge trimming needed after image rotation to remove a slight camera tilt.)


The locations from which these photos were taken are shown on the map below. Zoom in for more detail.

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