Friday, 30 September 2016

FRIDAY GREENS #91 - OAK FLOWERS

Welcome to this meme active every Friday. The theme is "Friday Greens" and you can post images, art, photos where the predominant colour is GREEN!

GREEN is the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.

An old folk weather rhyme says: "Ash before the oak, we're in for a soak". And it has certainly come true this year with the ash trees sprouting well before the oak trees and sure enough our Spring has been wet!

The oak trees are sprouting and flowering now. The male flowers are the grape-like pendulous structures below the tuft of leaves. The female flowers are much smaller and are found on top of the sprouting sprigs (not visible here). Have a look at a diagram if you are interested here.
If you take part in this meme:
Please link back to this page from your blog, with the Friday Greens logo or link text;
In the spirit of community, please visit other participants to see their photos and leave a comment;
Say hello here in the comments box, which is always appreciated!

Thursday, 29 September 2016

BABOON FLOWER

Babiana is a genus of flowering plants in the family Iridaceae composed of about 80 recognised species. The majority of these species are endemic to the Cape Provinces of South Africa, especially Namaqualand, as well Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The genus name is derived from the Dutch word baviaan, referring to the Chacma baboon Papio ursinus, that consumes the corms of plants in the genus.

Babiana stricta (baboon flower, blue freesia) is widely cultivated as an ornamental and has been naturalised in Australia. Growing 10–30 cm tall by 5 cm broad, it is a cormous perennial with hairy leaves 10-20 cm long. The leaves show linear venation. There are many hybrids and cultivars with different coloured flowers, usually blue, mauve or pink with white additions.

In mid- to late spring, each flowering stem produces six or more blooms, each to 5 cm across. They are grouped in an inflorescence and often have a pleasant lemon scent. The seeds are black with a hard coat, collected in round seed capsules. The specific epithet stricta means "erect, upright".

This specimen is growing in our  garden but the cold and rainy weather has spoiled it somewhat. The colour of the flowers is quite striking and makes a nice contrast witht he yellow freesias growing adjacent to it.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.



Tuesday, 27 September 2016

STONEHENGE

Stonehenge is a prehistoric monument in Wiltshire, England, 3 km west of Amesbury and 13 km north of Salisbury. Stonehenge's ring of standing stones are set within earthworks in the middle of the most dense complex of Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments in England, including several hundred burial mounds.

Archaeologists believe it was constructed from 3000 BC to 2000 BC. The surrounding circular earth bank and ditch, which constitute the earliest phase of the monument, have been dated to about 3100 BC. Radiocarbon dating suggests that the first bluestones were raised between 2400 and 2200 BC, although they may have been at the site as early as 3000 BC.

Stonehenge has been a legally protected Scheduled Ancient Monument since 1882 when legislation to protect historic monuments was first successfully introduced in Britain. The site and its surroundings were added to UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites in 1986. Stonehenge is owned by the Crown and managed by English Heritage; the surrounding land is owned by the National Trust.

Stonehenge could have been a burial ground from its earliest beginnings. Deposits containing human bone date from as early as 3000 BC, when the ditch and bank were first dug, and continued for at least another five hundred years.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 26 September 2016

FUCHSIA 'BLUE EYES'

I have edited this shot in Photoshop, accentuating the edges.

This post is part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Friday, 23 September 2016

FRIDAY GREENS #90 - LOQUAT BRANCH

Welcome to this meme active every Friday. The theme is "Friday Greens" and you can post images, art, photos where the predominant colour is GREEN!
GREEN is the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.
The loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) is a species of flowering plant in the family Rosaceae, an ancient fruit grown in Japan for the past 1,000 years which is probably native to the cooler hill regions of China to south-central China.

It is a large evergreen shrub or tree, grown commercially for its yellow fruit, and also cultivated as an ornamental plant. Eriobotrya japonica was formerly thought to be closely related to the genus Mespilus, and is still sometimes known as the Japanese medlar.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme.

If you take part in this meme:

Please link back to this page from your blog, with the Friday Greens logo or link text;
In the spirit of community, please visit other participants to see their photos and leave a comment;
Say hello here in the comments box, which is always appreciated!

Thursday, 22 September 2016

PIGFACE

Carpobrotus glaucescens, commonly known as angular sea-fig or pigface, is a species of flowering plant in the Aizoaceae (ice plant) family. It is a succulent coastal ground-cover native to temperate eastern Australia. The succulent leaves are 3.5–10 cm long and 9–15 mm wide, straight or slightly curved. The flowers are 3.2–6 cm wide, and light purple. The red to purple fruit is 2–3 cm long and 1.6–2.4 cm wide.

The fruit pulp is edible, with a flavour like salty strawberry or kiwifruit. The skin is discarded. The leaves are also edible cooked, and can be used as a preserved pickles. Fruit of the plant can also be made into a toffee or jam. The roasted leaves have been used as a salt substitute. Early European explorers used the plant as an anti-scurvy treatment. The juice of the leaves can also be used to relieve pain from insect bites. Carpobrotus comes from the Greek ‘karpos' (fruit) and ‘brota' (edible things) and refers to the edible fruits.

As would be expected C. glaucescens is very salt tolerant and is able to withstand salt spray, strong winds and sand blast. If covered with sand the plant can survive, grow upwards and produce a new plant mat over the old one. Pigface is generally a summer-spring growing plant. It can be grown either from seed or cuttings. Propagation is easiest by layering (rooting horizontal stem cuttings), as this is how the plant grows naturally. These layers should be around 30 cm in length and planted leaving at least 5 cm of the plant above the sand or soil. The plant can also be grown from cut pieces or division of large plants.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.



Tuesday, 20 September 2016

MILOS ISLAND, GREECE

Milos or Melos (Modern Greek: Μήλος [ˈmilos]; Ancient Greek: Μῆλος [Melos]) is a volcanic Greek island in the Aegean Sea, just north of the Sea of Crete. Milos is the most southwestern island in the Cyclades group.

The island is famous for the statue of Aphrodite (the "Venus de Milo", now in the Louvre), and also for statues of the Greek god Asclepius (now in the British Museum), the Poseidon and an archaic Apollo in Athens.

Milos is a popular tourist destination during the summer. The Municipality of Milos also includes the uninhabited offshore islands of Antimilos and Akradies. The combined land area is 160.147 square kilometres and the 2011 census population was 4,977 inhabitants.

Shown here is the picturesque village of Firopotamos on the northern shore of the island. This is both a fishing port and a beach with amazing clear blue water. It is very small, with a couple of houses with "syrmata" - boat garages on the ground floor of the houses, just in front of the sea. The place is good for swimming, fishing and snorkeling around the rocks surrounding the beach.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 19 September 2016

PAPERWEIGHT

A glass paperweight lit from below.

This post is part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme.

Friday, 16 September 2016

FRIDAY GREENS #89 - PLANE TREE FLOWERS

Welcome to this meme active every Friday. The theme is "Friday Greens" and you can post images, art, photos where the predominant colour is GREEN!
GREEN is the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.
Platanus is a genus comprising a small number of tree species native to the Northern Hemisphere. They are the sole living members of the family Platanaceae. All members of Platanus are tall, reaching 30–50 m in height. All except for P. kerrii are deciduous, and most are found in riparian or other wetland habitats in the wild, though proving drought-tolerant in cultivation.

The hybrid London plane has proved particularly tolerant of urban conditions. They are often known in English as planes or plane trees. Some North American species are called sycamores (especially Platanus occidentalis), although the term sycamore also refers to the fig Ficus sycomorus, the plant originally so named, and to the Sycamore Maple Acer pseudoplatanus.

The flowers are reduced and are borne in balls (globose heads); 3–7 hairy sepals may be fused at the base, and the petals are 3–7 and are spatulate. Male and female flowers are separate, but borne on the same plant (monoecious). The number of heads in one cluster (inflorescence) is indicative of the species. The male flower has 3–8 stamens; the female has a superior ovary with 3–7 carpels. Plane trees are wind-pollinated. Male flower-heads fall off after shedding their pollen.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.
If you take part in this meme:
Please link back to this page from your blog, with the Friday Greens logo or link text;
In the spirit of community, please visit other participants to see their photos and leave a comment;
Say hello here in the comments box, which is always appreciated!

Thursday, 15 September 2016

GERALDTON WAX

Chamaelaucium uncinatum, Geraldton wax, is a flowering plant endemic to Western Australia. It is an erect shrub 0.5 to 4m high, bearing white or pink flowers June–November. The name uncinatum means "hooked" in Latin, in reference to the tips of the leaves. The flowers (somewhat resembling those of the tea tree) last a relatively long time after cutting, making the plant popular in horticulture. It is widely cultivated throughout Australia, both in home gardens and in the cut flower industry. Purple-flowering cultivars have been developed, as shown by the photo.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

LYON, FRANCE

Lyon, or Lyons, is a city in east-central France, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, about 470 km from Paris and 320 km from Marseille. Inhabitants of the city are called Lyonnais. In 2013, Lyon had a population of 500,715 and is France's third-largest city after Paris and Marseille. Lyon is the capital of the department of Rhône and the region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. The metropolitan area of Lyon had a population of 2,237,676 in 2013, the second-largest in France after Paris.

The city is known for its cuisine and gastronomy and historical and architectural landmarks and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lyon was historically an important area for the production and weaving of silk. It played a significant role in the history of cinema: Auguste and Louis Lumière invented the cinematographe in Lyon. The city is also known for its famous light festival, Fête des Lumières, which occurs every 8 December and lasts for four days, earning Lyon the title of Capital of Lights.

Economically, Lyon is a major centre for banking, as well as for the chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. The city contains a significant software industry with a particular focus on video games, and in recent years has fostered a growing local start-up sector. Lyon hosts the international headquarters of Interpol, Euronews, and International Agency for Research on Cancer. Lyon was ranked 19th globally and second in France for innovation in 2014. It ranked second in France and 39th globally in Mercer's 2015 liveability rankings.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 12 September 2016

CINERARIAS

Pericallis × hybrida, known as cineraria, florist's cineraria or common ragwort is a flowering plant in the family Asteraceae. It originated as a hybrid between Pericallis cruenta and P. lanata, both natives of the Canary Islands. The hybrid was first developed in the British royal gardens in 1777. It was originally known as Cineraria × hybrida, but the genus Cineraria is now restricted to a group of South African species, with the Canary Island species being transferred to the genus Pericallis; some botanists also treat it in a broad view of the large and widespread genus Senecio. Some varieties are sold under the trade name Senetti.

A floral tribute to innocent lives lost worldwide through acts of terrorism.

This post is part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Friday, 9 September 2016

FRIDAY GREENS #88 - TENNIS

Welcome to this meme active every Friday. The theme is "Friday Greens" and you can post images, art, photos where the predominant colour is GREEN!
GREEN is the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.
As the weather warms up in Melbourne, it's time to get back on the tennis court and hit a few little green balls back and forth...
If you take part in this meme:
Please link back to this page from your blog, with the Friday Greens logo or link text;
In the spirit of community, please visit other participants to see their photos and leave a comment;

Say hello here in the comments box, which is always appreciated!

Thursday, 8 September 2016

PAPER DAISY

Rhodanthe anthemoides, commonly known as paper daisy and chamomile sunray, is a perennial species of the daisy family Asteraceae. It is endemic to Australia. Plants have multiple stems rising from the base which reach up to 40 cm high and spread to 60 cm wide. The leaves are about 10 mm long and 0.5 to 2 mm in width. A central cluster of pale yellow flowers is surrounded by petal-like white, papery bracts. These appear between September and February in the species native range. These are followed by small dry achenes that have silky hairs.

The species occurs in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. Although a widespread species on the mainland, in Tasmania it is listed as "rare" under the TSP Act. It is found in mountainous regions growing in sandy soil. The species is commonly cultivated, preferring a well drained, lightly shaded situation. Cutting back after flowering prevents plants from becoming straggly. Plants are well suited to being grown in containers. Propagation is from seed or cuttings, named cultivars requiring the latter method to be true to type.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.


Wednesday, 7 September 2016

INSPIRING INDIA

India, officially the Republic of India is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the south-west, and the Bay of Bengal on the south-east, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north-east; and Myanmar (Burma) and Bangladesh to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; in addition, India's Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia.

Home to the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation and a region of historic trade routes and vast empires, the Indian subcontinent was identified with its commercial and cultural wealth for much of its long history. Four religions—Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism—originated here, whereas Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam arrived in the 1st millennium CE and also shaped the region's diverse culture. Gradually annexed by and brought under the administration of the British East India Company from the early 18th century and administered directly by the United Kingdom after the Indian Rebellion of 1857, India became an independent nation in 1947 after a struggle for independence that was marked by non-violent resistance led by Mahatma Gandhi.

Economists estimate India to have been the most populous and wealthiest region of the world throughout the first millennium CE. This advantage was lost in the 18th century as other regions edged forward. Currently, the Indian economy is the world's seventh-largest by nominal GDP and third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP). Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies; it is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption, malnutrition, inadequate public healthcare, and terrorism. A nuclear weapons state and a regional power, it has the third-largest standing army in the world and ranks sixth in military expenditure among nations.

India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system consisting of 29 states and 7 union territories. India is a pluralistic, multilingual, and a multi-ethnic society. It is also home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats.

This post is part of the Wednesday Waters meme,
and also part of the Waterworld Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme.













Tuesday, 6 September 2016

HOBART, TASMANIA

Hobart is the state capital and most populous city of the Australian island state of Tasmania. Founded in 1804 as a penal colony, Hobart is Australia's second oldest capital city after Sydney. In 2009, the city had a greater area population of approximately 212,019. A resident of Hobart is known as a "Hobartian".

The city is located in the state's south-east on the estuary of the Derwent River. The skyline is dominated by Mount Wellington at 1,271 metres high. The city is the financial and administrative heart of Tasmania, also serving as the home port for both Australian and French Antarctic operations. Hobart was named Australia's 6th most sustainable city, by the Australian Conservation Foundation in 2010. For economic and social innovation, Hobart was the 11th placed in Australia in 2009, and listed as an innovation influencer city in the Innovation Cities Global Index scoring equal with Reykjavik, Katowice and Casablanca by 2thinknow.

Hobart supports a huge tourist industry. Visitors come to the city to explore its historic inner suburbs and nationally acclaimed restaurants and cafes, as well as its vibrant music and nightlife culture. Australia's first legal casino was the 17-storey Wrest Point Hotel Casino in Sandy Bay, opened in 1973. Tourists also come to visit the massive weekly market in Salamanca Place, as well as to use the city as a base from which to explore the rest of Tasmania.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Friday, 2 September 2016

FRIDAY GREENS #87 - RUE

Welcome to this meme active every Friday. The theme is "Friday Greens" and you can post images, art, photos where the predominant colour is GREEN!
GREEN is the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.
Ruta graveolens, commonly known as rue, common rue or herb-of-grace, is a species of Ruta in the family Rutaceae, grown as an ornamental plant and as an herb. It is native to the Balkan Peninsula. It is now grown throughout the world in gardens, especially for its bluish-green leaves, and sometimes for its tolerance of hot and dry soil conditions. It is also cultivated as a medicinal herb, as a condiment, and to a lesser extent as an insect repellent.

For more information, see here "All About Rue".
If you take part in this meme:
  • Please link back to this page from your blog, with the Friday Greens logo or link text;
  • In the spirit of community, please visit other participants to see their photos and leave a comment;
  • Say hello here in the comments box, which is always appreciated!

Thursday, 1 September 2016

CHERRY PLUM BLOSSOM

Prunus cerasifera is a species of plum known by the common names cherry plum and myrobalan plum. It is native to Europe and Asia and naturalised in scattered locations in North America. Wild types are large shrubs or small trees reaching 6–15 m tall, with deciduous leaves 4–6 cm long. It is one of the first European trees to flower in spring, often starting in mid-February. The flowers are white and about 2 cm (0.8 inches) across, with five petals. The fruit is a drupe, 2–3 cm in diameter, and yellow or red. It is edible, and reaches maturity from early July to mid-September.

The cherry plum is a popular ornamental tree for garden and landscaping use, grown for its very early flowering. Numerous cultivars have been developed, many of them selected for purple foliage, such as 'Atropurpurea'. These purple-foliage forms (often called purple-leaf plum), also have dark purple fruit, which make an attractive, intensely coloured jam. They can have white or pink flowers. The cultivar 'Thundercloud' has bright red foliage which darkens purple. Others, such as 'Lindsayae', have green foliage. Some kinds of purple-leaf plums are used for bonsai and other forms of living sculpture.

The variety 'Nigra' (Shown in flower here) with black foliage and pink flowers, has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.