Blue Passion Flower macro, Heesch, Netherlands
About 2 weeks ago, I noticed how our neighbour's passion flower plant, which grows several meters during a single summer, has made an entry into our garden by "climbing" over the fence. Great, because they are wonderful flowers. I made a note to myself that as soon as I have time, I will try a focus shifting stack on one of the flowers. As I was rather busy, each day I would just observe if the flower is still there, because a single flower was blossoming.
Yes, it was still there each day for the whole 2 weeks. Except that it wasn't, because I've now learned that passion flowers bloom for a single day. In other words, I was looking at a different flower every single day. Quite a mindf***?
Anyway, bear with me a little as I am inexperienced in focus stacking. I've made tons of mistakes and I'm still not happy with these results, but you have to start somewhere. This is an in-house scene (every outdoor shot failed horribly due to wind) with the flower on a clamp, and a flash light for top lighting. My camera is flat on the table and I'm using the Nikon D850's inbuilt focus shifting mode, where you simply enter the number of steps and the size of each step. The background was initially not this dark yet I had to apply some brushes due to halo effects as part of the stacking process.
And oh yes, about passion flowers. As said, they bloom for a single day. Another remarkable fact is regarding the mimicry of some species. Butterflies using this flower as a host plant to deposit eggs, first check if another butterfly did not already deposited eggs, to avoid cannibalism. The passion flower has a brilliant defense: it contains a mimic of these butterfly eggs: small, orange round bulbs that looks like eggs, but are purely a misleading appendage.
Some different crops:
Passiflora caerulea, commonly known as the Blue Passion Flower or the Common Passion Flower, is a vine native to South America (Argentina, Paraguay (where it is widely known as the Mburucuyá in Guaraní), Uruguay and Brazil). These names may also be applied to Passiflora edulis sometimes known as the passionfruit.
It is popular with gardeners because of its intricate, scented flowers that have an almost plastic-looking appearance.