Welcome to Villa Emilia (My Woodland Garden), a photography blog with a slant towards gardening and nature. An amateur gardener and photographer, I hope to share beautiful moments with you through pictures. Let me know if you like them!

Kommentit suomen kielellä ovat erityisen tervetulleita! - Puoi commentare anche in italiano!

Thank you for your visit.



Do I think people's personalities and destiny are affected by their zodiac signs?  Of course not. However, I do know that my star sign is Leo. Leo's character has been described for example like this:

Leo. A flexible bon vivant.
"What do you mean by card maxed out? I've only started warming up!"

"Maisa and Kaarina", by Sari Luhtanen and Tiina Paju, is one of my favourite Finnish comic strips and gag cartoons. It's about the life and friendship between two women, Maisa (above; blond, plump, single) and Kaarina (slim, dark-haired, very efficient mum and housewife).  It's about coffee and chocolate, too. Illustrated with adventures of M&K, I have a canvas bag, coffee mugs, stamps, albums...



Fresh evening air on a lake shore

I don't like grasses very much, but they can be spectacular, especially this summer, when they have grown higher than usually:

Purple marshlock (Comarum palustre) is said to be a common waterside plant, but I learned to recognize it only some years ago. It has a beautiful flower:

Rosebay Willowherb (Chamerion angustifolium) is probably one of those plants that would be more appreciated, were it not so common:

Seen from near, it's flowers are actually rather pretty:


An all-orange posting

Orange is not really one of my favourite colours, but it surely is cheerful and energy-boosting:


Bedding plants... in pink

Cosmos has been the star performer of this summer; the plants have grown well and healthy and they produce plenty of flowers.  While taking photos of them, however, I also noticed something unpleasant. Since there are both aphids and ants on the plants, one could easily imagine a nasty mutualistic relationship between them.  Well, I took a pair of thin plastic gloves and picked and squashed them all.

The marguerite daisies have been slow to grow, but now they start looking established.  After a rainy night, they look more vigorous and happy:

I don't know from where the light blue shade of these photos comes; let's say the petals reflect the blue sky of a beautiful summer morning...



The "national bird" of the country, the whooper swan had become rare in Finland, but recently the population has rebounded. Concerning the English language, I have now learned that a male swan is called cob and a female pen. The Oxford English Dictionary tells these names were already known in the 16th century:  "c1550 Order for Swannes §27, The cignettes shalbe seazed to the King, till due proof be had whos they are, and whos was the swan that is away, be it cobb, or penne..."

This has been my first effort to photograph them. This summer, a couple with five cygnets is often seen near the cottages on the shore.  However, when they noticed me, calmly and in good order, they started to move further:

Laulujoutsenen äänet ovat kiehtovia.  Sen Pohjois-Amerikassa elävän lähisukulaisen nimi on, hauskasti, trumpettijoutsen. Tuleekohan nimi sen äänestä?


On a warm summer afternoon

For about a week, we have been able to enjoy warm, almost hot, weather.  In the morning, it is lovely to go outside wearing only shorts and a t-shirt, but in the afternoon, 28 - 30 degrees Celsius start to be too much, especially if the weather is humid.

Thunderstorms and rain may cool the air for a while.

It's lovely to stay in the shade of the garden trees and observe for example the large leaves of the flowering raspberry (Rubus odoratus)...

...or to raise one's eyes and look up to the branches of an old pine:

Admiring treetops is soothing, isn't it?


Early morning dew

It has been raining much in the last days.  It's not late summer yet, but during the nights dew forms on thin, exposed surfaces:


Flowers to M

A very dear person has started his military service today.   M., these flowers are for you!



In Finland, July seems to be the summer holiday month for most of the people.  At the moment, it's rainy and cool in many parts of the country.  Warmer weather is, however, expected soon.  To all readers, wherever you are, here's to a beautiful and sunny July! 

I hope you will have a relaxing and "soul-nurturing" summer!