Sunday, March 15, 2009

Passiflora tenuiloba

Passiflora tenuiloba is a small, unassuming passiflora native to south and west Texas. I'm partial to them, and have several potted at home. One's been blooming for the past week, with flowers maybe 3/4 inch across.


I've played around with macro a little using a Nikon 50mm f/1.8 AI-s I inherited from my father-in-law with a reversing ring. I like the manual focus and aperture control which gives me more flexible say over the final image, but it's not tremendously powerful as far as macros go. Straight shots of the tenuiloba flower weren't particularly impressive. Then I remembered that my brother'd given me a Vivitar 2x teleconverter a while back that he'd played around with but lost interest in. Could I use it for macro? First attempts resulted in error messages from my camera--the lens wasn't communicating with it, the camera said, and recommended I clean the contacts. The Vivitar had autofocus contacts on it, and somehow these were causing problems. Solution? I taped over them. Presto! No more error message. And wow, were the results striking--I've lost two stops on the lens, but fortunately it was a fast f/1.8 to begin with. I'm happy with the results, and hope to take the assembly out tomorrow and see what I can find.

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  1. Anonymous4:00 PM

    I live in Pearsall, Texas and I have seen these passion vines growing in two different places in this area. I would like to have one of these plants, but no one seems to offer them for sale. I have not visited the places where I have seen them growing, mainly because of the hot, dry summer we've had.
    About the macro lens: I have several old Topcon 35mm film cameras and a variety of macro lenses. I once took a picture of the INSIDE of a freshly hatched Gulf Fritillary egg and was astounded to see that it looked like Mother of Pearl inside.

  2. Sorry it took so long to notice your comment! I, too, would like to have more of these--I've only got one, and it won't self-pollinate. The only place I know that sells them is Natives of Texas outside of Kerrville ( I bought one a few years ago and promptly killed it with over-watering. Learned my lesson. They do better in the ground and left on their own.