Summer Shadows

– Posted in: Garden Photography, Succulents

Shadows are as much a part of a Southern California summer as sunshine itself. These play with the imagination like a midsummer day’s dream.

Euphorbia shadow_JFR

Above: Flowers of a columnar euphorbia.


Above: Aloe flower and stair rail.


Above: Gazania bloom.


Above: Cyphostemma buds and leaf.


Above: A garden chair seat.
Front, shadows
Above: Pilosocereus pachycladus.


Above: Echeveria agavoides.


Above: Agave colorata.

Pachyphytum pot

Above: Pachyphytum sp.


Above: Ivy.


Above: Aloe ‘Hercules’ at a wholesale nursery.

Above: Texas privet.
Columnar euphorbia_JFR

Another euphorbia.

Aloe shadow, front

Above: Aloe bainesii.


Above: Eeek!

My goal is to share the beauty of waterwise, easy-care succulents in gardens, containers and landscapes via blog postsnewsletterspublic speaking and workshopsphotosvideosmerchandise, and social media (Facebook and Pinterest). My books: Designing with Succulents, Succulent Container Gardensand Succulents Simplified. 

Debra Lee Baldwin
Award-winning garden photojournalist Debra Lee Baldwin authored Designing with Succulents, Succulent Container Gardens, and Succulents Simplified, all Timber Press bestsellers. Her goal is to enhance others' enjoyment and awareness of waterwise plants and gardens by showcasing the beauty and design potential of succulents via books, articles, newsletters, photos, videos, social media and more. Debra and husband Jeff live in the foothills north of San Diego. She grew up in Southern California on an avocado ranch, speaks conversational Spanish, and at age 18 graduated magna cum laude from USIU with a degree in English Literature. Her hobbies include thrifting, birding and watercolor painting. Debra's YouTube channel has had over 3,000,000 views.
Debra Lee Baldwin
Debra Lee Baldwin
16 comments… add one

Leave a Comment

CC July 20, 2013, 8:52 pm

Love the shadows…….sometimes I just do not slow down enough to see the whole pix. the last one – a keeper.:)

Jan Brider July 21, 2013, 1:03 am

Very cool isn’t light amazing!

Gareth July 21, 2013, 1:04 am

For the first time in ten years Glossop the town where I live is having a heat wave and the sun is scorching the grass and making the Tarmac sticky! The other added benefit is I can look into the shadows cast by different plants as in your post!!

Cornish Sam July 21, 2013, 1:34 am

Very interesting

Debra Lee Balwin has an eye for beauty.

Cornish Sam July 21, 2013, 1:36 am

Apologies for misspelt surname.

Jean Marsh July 21, 2013, 10:22 am

Started my morning with a bit of water coloring, and was actually thinking about shadow as I painted and did a few studies. Then I read your article. Perfect. Thanks. Will play this afternoon in the paint box with renewed inspiration!

Patrick July 21, 2013, 3:03 pm

I think this is one of my favorites in a while. Love the hen and chicks.

Margaret (Peggy) Herrman July 21, 2013, 3:08 pm

A simple WOW covers my reaction. Thanks Debra, and thanks, Peggy

Jillian July 22, 2013, 1:23 am

beautiful flowers. Really inspirational! made my morning!

Jessie Bryant July 22, 2013, 10:59 am

Wow! I never thought shadows can be a great subject for photography. I will definitely try this. Thanks for sharing! 😀

John July 22, 2013, 12:17 pm

These are beautiful pictures! Such a unique idea, now I must look at the shadows of my garden!

Debra Lee Baldwin July 23, 2013, 12:47 am

I’m so glad you all enjoyed the post. Aren’t you curious about the last photo? It’s an ant made of cast iron, about a foot long and as high. I got it on a shopping trip to Mexico, and it has since occupied a place of honor near my front door. Unfortunately, it doesn’t keep the real thing away.

Lisa@YourEasyGarden July 23, 2013, 3:01 pm

What a creative, original idea! You could make a whole book out of this! Thanks for identifying the plants – and the Eeek! at the end!

Mitch Parker August 3, 2013, 8:21 am

This is really creative. I didn’t know that shadows can produce great and beautiful images. Light is really important in photography. Thanks so much for this lesson. 🙂

Ashley August 12, 2013, 7:47 am

Very creative idea! The pictures of these shadows are so neat. Thanks for posting this!

Cassidy August 15, 2013, 12:08 pm

This is such a fun idea! Succulents do make really great shadows. It’s interesting to step back and look at the “negative” space instead of the plants themselves.

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