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Mahonia japonica?

Mahonia japonica

This is a shot I took back in January, walking near Green Street Green. The vibrant colours of this plant caught my eye as I walked along a footpath that ran along the back of some gardens. I am fairly sure that is an example of Mahonia japonica or at least some cousin in that family although I have only seen evergreen examples before.

I did some research this morning on Flickr, which found a few similar examples labelled with the same name, so I may be right. I would expect more shots of such a photogenic subject though so we could all be wrong! I also looked on Wikipedia, which gave some more background information, including the suggestion that the classification of Mahonia as a separate group from Berberis is debated.

Botanical details aside, it was a beautiful plant. I have slightly intensified the colour and improved the white balance. I also applied the selective sharpening technique I wrote about last month, allowing me to make the in focus areas even crisper while not creating odd artifacts in the portions that were intentionally blurred. All in all, a successful shot – and sized for use as desktop wallpaper (4:3 ratio) if you would like to make use of it.

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