Thursday 30 March 2017


Rosa 'Just Joey' is probably the best of the orange roses, or roses with an apricot blend. Take a look at the image of this hybrid tea rose and you'll understand why this is such a popular rose with the home gardeners everywhere, but especially so in warmer climates. Of all the varieties of hybrid tea roses 'Just Joey' is definitely in the top five as far as beauty, fragrance, colour, compact form and disease resistance goes, it can't be beaten.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme,
and also part of the Orange you Glad It's Friday meme.

Wednesday 29 March 2017


Lionel the Lion

There was a Libyan lion,

(Yes, Lionel was his name),
Who was the hopeful scion
Of family of great fame.

He lingered by the lakeside

Lunching on tender lamb,
(And tears of pity cried
Because he hated Spam).

Lionel was a clement lion

With such a heart of gold,
But when it came luncheon
His taste, refined and bold.

Beware of kind-hearted foodies

Who will devour meats
While saying that such goodies
Are vegetarian treats.

This post is part of the Wednesday Waters 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.

Tuesday 28 March 2017


Phillip Island is an Australian island about 140 km south-southeast of Melbourne, Victoria. Named after Arthur Phillip, the first Governor of New South Wales, Phillip Island forms a natural breakwater for the shallow waters of the Western Port. It is 26 km long and 9 km wide, with an area of about 100 km2. It has 97 km of coastline and is part of the Bass Coast Shire.

A 640 m concrete bridge (originally a wooden bridge) connects the mainland town San Remo with the island town Newhaven. In the 2011 census the island's permanent population was 9,406, compared to 7,071 in 2001. During the summer, the population swells to 40,000. 60% of the island is farmland devoted to grazing of sheep and cattle.

Seal Rocks is a group of rocky inlets along Phillip island's coastline. It is home to Australia's largest fur seal population, numbering around 16,000. The population peaks between late October to December, but it is possible to view seals at all times of the year. Seals eat squid, cuttlefish and small fish. They can dive up to 100m and have excellent underwater vision.

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.

Friday 24 March 2017

Thursday 23 March 2017


Ken the Kangaroo

Ken was a clever kangaroo
Who lived a life of leisure,
He didn’t have a thing to do,
Just hopped about with pleasure.

Kathy Koala was his friend
But she was stressed and worried;
She fussed and grumbled without end
And generally was flurried…

The two were ever quibbling
About what to do together –
Ken wanted songs and fiddling,
Kathy to work forever.

So Ken just hopped and skipped along
While Kathy always laboured,
Neither was she right nor was he wrong,
They each their lifestyle savoured.

This post is part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of theWordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.

Tuesday 21 March 2017


The Hotel del Coronado (also known as The Del and Hotel Del) is a historic beachfront hotel in the city of Coronado, just across the San Diego Bay from San Diego, California. It is one of the few surviving examples of an American architectural genre: The wooden Victorian beach resort. It is the second largest wooden structure in the United States (after the Tillamook Air Museum in Tillamook, Oregon) and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977 and a California Historical Landmark in 1970.

When it opened in 1888, it was the largest resort hotel in the world. It has hosted presidents, royalty, and celebrities through the years. The hotel has been featured in numerous movies and books. The hotel received a Four Diamond rating from the American Automobile Association and was once listed by USA Today as one of the top ten resorts in the world, though it has since been removed from that list.

Notable guests have included Thomas Edison, L. Frank Baum, Charlie Chaplin, King Kalakaua of Hawaii, Vincent Price, Babe Ruth, James Stewart, Bette Davis and Katharine Hepburn. More recently, guests have included Kevin Costner, Whoopi Goldberg, Gene Hackman, George Harrison, Brad Pitt, Madonna, Barbra Streisand and Oprah Winfrey. The following presidents have stayed at the hotel: Benjamin Harrison, William McKinley, William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama.

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.

Sunday 19 March 2017


This post is part of the My Sunday Best meme,
and also part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme,
and also part of the Weekend in Black and White meme.

Saturday 18 March 2017


Harmonia axyridis, most commonly known as the harlequin, multicoloured Asian, or simply Asian ladybeetle, is a large coccinellid beetle. This is one of the most variable species in the world, with an exceptionally wide range of colour forms. It is native to eastern Asia, but has been artificially introduced to North America and Europe to control aphids and scale insects. It is now common, well known, and spreading in those regions, and has also established in South Africa and widely across South America.

This species is conspicuous in North America where it may locally be known as the Halloween ladybeetle. It earns this name as it often invades homes during October, in order to prepare for overwintering.In Japan, it is not generally distinguished from the seven-spot ladybird which is also common there. When the species first arrived in the UK, it was labelled in jest as the "many-named ladybird" due to the great quantity of vernacular names. Among those already listed other names include multivariate, southern, Japanese, and pumpkin ladybird.

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme.
and also part of the part of the My Sunday Best meme,
and also part of the part of the Camera Critters meme.

Thursday 16 March 2017


Datura stramonium, known by the common names Jimson weed or datura, is a plant in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family, which is believed to have originated in the Americas, but is now found around the world. Other common names for D. stramonium include thornapple and moon flower, and it has the Spanish name Toloache.

For centuries, datura has been used as a herbal medicine to relieve asthma symptoms and as an analgesic during surgery or bonesetting. It is also a powerful hallucinogen and deliriant, which is used spiritually for the intense visions it produces. However, the tropane alkaloids which are responsible for both the medicinal and hallucinogenic properties are fatally toxic in only slightly higher amounts than the medicinal dosage, and careless use often results in hospitalisations and deaths.

Datura stramonium generally flowers throughout the summer. The fragrant flowers are trumpet-shaped, white to creamy or violet, and 6–9 cm long, and grow on short stems from either the axils of the leaves or the places where the branches fork. The calyx is long and tubular, swollen at the bottom, and sharply angled, surmounted by five sharp teeth. The corolla, which is folded and only partially open, is white, funnel-shaped, and has prominent ribs. The flowers open at night, emitting a pleasant fragrance and is fed upon by nocturnal moths.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 15 March 2017


The Jackal and the Jaguar

A Jackal and a Jaguar met in a jungle lush –
“I say, dear chap, you’re lost!” Said Jack,
“My Jaguar, friend, you are American,
And come whence great rivers’ waters rush…”

“Tis true,” replied the Jaguar, divesting of his knapsack:
“I am on a walking journey, and the world o’er tread,
From Greece to China, then to Pakistan,
And thence to Chad, to Monaco, Japan, and back.”

“How jolly, and how interesting,” Jack with a twinkle said –
“And what on earth possessed you to go on such a trip?”
Jed Jaguar winked and showed his tan:
“I visit all the places of which, as a cub, I’d read.”

“Well done, my spotted special pal! Let’s have a sip
Of this sweet and special, icy welcome drink…”
And they clinked glasses, cheered and then began
To quaff the drinks non-stop (no, not just a nip).

Poor Jed was soon knocked out cold as ice,
And Jack called jackals all round him.
They feasted on imported meat – from Yucatan,
Delicious! And Jack then made a spotted coat
To wear on feasts and Sundays…

The moral is, my friends (and heed this sage advice):
Stay put at home and read your books, as much as you desire;
And if you travel, then beware of friendly jackals, nice,
For they may not be all they seem, they may conspire
To do ill deeds – so you be careful always!

This post is 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 Poets United meme.

Tuesday 14 March 2017


Kolkata (also known as Calcutta, the official name until 2001) is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. Located on the east bank of the Hooghly River, it is the principal commercial, cultural, and educational centre of East India, while the Port of Kolkata is India's oldest operating port and its sole major riverine port. In 2011, the city had a population of 4.5 million, while the population of the city and its suburbs was 14.1 million, making it the third-most populous metropolitan area in India. Recent estimates of Kolkata Metropolitan Area's economy have ranged from $60 to $150 billion (GDP adjusted for purchasing power parity) making it third most-productive metropolitan area in India, after Mumbai and Delhi.

In the late 17th century, the three villages that predated Calcutta were ruled by the Nawab of Bengal under Mughal suzerainty. After the Nawab granted the East India Company a trading licence in 1690, the area was developed by the Company into an increasingly fortified trading post. Nawab Siraj ud-Daulah occupied Calcutta in 1756, and the East India Company retook it the following year. In 1793 the East India company was strong enough to abolish Nizamat (local rule), and assumed full sovereignty of the region. Under the company rule, and later under the British Raj, Calcutta served as the capital of British-held territories in India until 1911, when its perceived geographical disadvantages, combined with growing nationalism in Bengal, led to a shift of the capital to New Delhi.

Calcutta was the centre for the Indian independence movement; it remains a hotbed of contemporary state politics. Following Indian independence in 1947, Kolkata, which was once the centre of modern Indian education, science, culture, and politics, suffered several decades of economic stagnation. As a nucleus of the 19th- and early 20th-century Bengal Renaissance and a religiously and ethnically diverse centre of culture in Bengal and India, Kolkata has local traditions in drama, art, film, theatre, and literature. Many people from Kolkata—among them several Nobel laureates—have contributed to the arts, the sciences, and other areas. Kolkata culture features idiosyncrasies that include distinctively close-knit neighbourhoods (paras) and freestyle intellectual exchanges (adda).

West Bengal's share of the Bengali film industry is based in the city, which also hosts venerable cultural institutions of national importance, such as the Academy of Fine Arts, the Victoria Memorial (shown here), the Asiatic Society, the Indian Museum and the National Library of India. Among professional scientific institutions, Kolkata hosts the Agri Horticultural Society of India, the Geological Survey of India, the Botanical Survey of India, the Calcutta Mathematical Society, the Indian Science Congress Association, the Zoological Survey of India, the Institution of Engineers, the Anthropological Survey of India and the Indian Public Health Association. Though home to major cricketing venues and franchises, Kolkata differs from other Indian cities by giving importance to association football and other sports.

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.

Sunday 12 March 2017


Bentley Motors Limited is a British luxury automaker, and a wholly owned subsidiary of the German company Volkswagen AG. Its principal activity is the design, engineering, manufacture, and distribution of luxury automobiles sold under the Bentley marque. Based in Crewe, England, Bentley Motors Limited was founded by W. O. Bentley on 18 January 1919 in Cricklewood near London and was acquired by Rolls-Royce in 1931.

Bentley Motors Limited is the direct successor of Rolls-Royce Motors, which Volkswagen AG purchased in 1998. The purchase included the vehicle designs, model nameplates, production and administrative facilities, the Spirit of Ecstasy and Rolls-Royce grille shape trademarks, but not the rights to the use of the Rolls-Royce name or logo, which are owned by Rolls-Royce Holdings plc and were later licensed to BMW AG. Bentley vehicles are sold via franchised dealers worldwide, and as of November 2012, China was the largest individual market for Bentley automobiles.

Most Bentley cars are assembled at the company's plant in Crewe, with a small number of Continental Flying Spurs assembled at the Transparent Factory in Dresden, Germany. Automobile bodies for the Continental model line are produced in Zwickau, Germany. Bentley cars are largely hand-built. Bentley cars won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1924, 1927, 1928, 1929, 1930 and 2003. The current Bentley production models are the Continental Flying Spur, Continental GT and Mulsanne. Notable former Bentley production models include the Bentley 4½ Litre, Bentley Speed Six, Bentley R Type Continental, Bentley Turbo R and Bentley Arnage.

This post is part of the My Sunday Best meme,
and also part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme.

Friday 10 March 2017


As the sun nears the West in suburban Canberra, a dazzling afternoon...

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Photo Friday meme,
and also part of the Weekend Green meme.

Thursday 9 March 2017


Clematis virginiana (also known as devil's darning needles, devil's hair, love vine, traveller's joy, virgin's bower, Virginia virgin's bower, wild hops, and woodbine; syn. Clematis virginiana L. var. missouriensis (Rydb.) Palmer & Steyermark) is a vine of the Ranunculaceae (Buttercup Family) native to the United States and Canada from Newfoundland to southern Manitoba down to the Gulf of Mexico. The rationale for some of the common names is unclear, as they include examples normally applied to unrelated plants, including twining parasites (e.g. "devil's hair" for Cuscuta). The name "Love Vine" also is applied to alleged aphrodisiacs, such as Caribbean species of Cassytha, which are unrelated to Clematis, not being in the family Ranunculaceae.

This plant is an aggressively growing vine which can climb to heights of 3-6 metres by twisting leafstalks. The leaves are opposite and pinnately compound, trifoliate (3 leaflets) that have coarse unequal teeth on the margins. It produces small dull white flowers of 13 to 19mm in July into September that are faintly sweetly fragrant; normally dioecious so that there are separate staminate (male) and pistillate (female) plants. The male plants are a little showier in flower and don't bear seed.

The dry fruit is an achene with long hair as silvery gray feathery plumes attached in late August into November. It grows on the edges of the woods, moist slopes, fence rows, in thickets and on streambanks. It grows in full sun to light full shade and is very adaptable to many soils from sandy to clay, dry to draining wet, and acid to alkaline with pH range of 6.0 to 8.5. It has a deep but sparse, fibrous root system that makes it hard to transplant.Good for USDA hardiness zones of 3 to 8.

Virgin's Bower is not commonly planted in gardens and landscapes in most places. It is sold by a good number of native plant nurseries and some specialty and large conventional nurseries. What is usually sold at most every conventional nursery or garden centre is the similar sweet autumn clematis, Clematis terniflora, from Japan that is much more rampant growing, that bears heavier clouds of white flowers with a stronger fragrance, that has simple leaves not compound with 3 leaflets, that as one plant self-sows around a lot, and becomes an invasive plant when escaping cultivation in North America.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 8 March 2017


The Ibis

The ibis is a sacred bird

So idle, happy, by the Nile;
It speaks, and each wise word
A scribe records – and puts on file.

“Oh, Ibis, dear, won’t you sing

Instead of speaking non-stop?
It really would be quite the thing
If you could jazz, and pop, and bebop.”

The ibis turns and irked, he scowls,
Then thoughtfully replies:
“Songs that you seek are for the fowls,
The owls, and chicks, and gadflies!

I am the bird of Thoth, you know,

And have proper decorum;
I speak, orate, recite and crow
So finely in the forum!”

“I beg your pardon, Ibis, Sir,

For being so light and shallow,
I, to your wisdom will defer
And be no longer callow.”

This post is part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,

and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.

Tuesday 7 March 2017


Parga (Greek: Πάργα [ˈpaɾɣa]) is a town and municipality located in the northwestern part of the regional unit of Preveza in Epirus, northwestern Greece. The seat of the municipality is the village Kanallaki.[2] Parga lies on the Ionian coast between the cities of Preveza and Igoumenitsa. It is a resort town known for its scenic beauty.

In antiquity the area was inhabited by the Greek tribe of the Thesprotians. The ancient town of Toryne was probably located here. The village of Parga stands from the early 13th century. It was originally built on top of the mountain "Pezovolo". In 1360 the Pargians, in order to avoid the attacks of the Magrebins, transferred the village to its present location. During that period, with the help of the Normans, who held the island of Corfu, the fortress of Parga was built.

In 1401 a treaty was signed with the Venetians, and the rule of Ionian Islands passed to them. The Venetians respected the lifestyle of the Pargians who provided, in turn, invaluable assistance to the fleet of the Venetians. At the same time the Pargians fought by the side of their compatriots to throw off the Ottoman rule. As Parga was the only free Christian village of Epirus, it was a perfect refuge for persecuted fighters and their families.

In 1797 the area, along with the Ionian Islands and Parga, fell into the hands of the French, and in 1800, proclaimed free city status with broad authority under the protection of the Sublime Porte. In 1815, with the fortunes of the French failing, the citizens of Parga revolted against French rule and sought the protection of the British.

In 1817, following a treaty between Britain and the Ottoman Empire, the British granted Parga to the Ottomans. This resulted in the Good Friday of 1819 where 4,000 Pargians, having with them the ashes of the bones of their ancestors, their sacred images, flags and a handful of soil from their homeland, exiled themselves in the British protectorate of Corfu where they settled. The former citizens of Parga never ceased to dream of returning to a free country and to participate actively in the struggle for liberation. But they had to wait almost 100 years for this. Parga and the rest of Epirus was liberated from the Ottoman rule on 1913 following the victory of Greece in the Balkan Wars.

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.

Sunday 5 March 2017


This post is part of the Orange you Glad It's Friday meme,
and also part of the Scenic Weekends meme,
and also part of the My Sunday Best meme,
and also part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme.

Friday 3 March 2017


Citrus is a genus of flowering trees and shrubs in the rue family, Rutaceae. Plants in the genus produce citrus fruits, including important crops like oranges, lemons, grapefruit, pomelo and limes. The most recent research indicates an origin in Australia, New Caledonia and New Guinea. Some researchers believe that the origin is in the part of Southeast Asia bordered by Northeast India, Burma (Myanmar) and the Yunnan province of China, and it is in this region that some commercial species such as oranges, mandarins, and lemons originated. Citrus fruit has been cultivated in an ever-widening area since ancient times.

Citrus fruit intake has been associated with a 10% reduction in odds of developing breast cancer. Citrus fruit intake is also associated with a reduced risk of stomach cancer. Also, citrus fruit juices, such as orange, lime and lemon, may be useful for lowering the risk of specific types of kidney stones. Grapefruit is another fruit juice that can be used to lower blood pressure because it interferes with the metabolism of calcium channel blockers.[29] Lemons have the highest concentration of citrate of any citrus fruit, and daily consumption of lemonade has been shown to decrease the rate of kidney stone formation.

Oranges were historically used for their high content of vitamin C, which prevents scurvy. Scurvy is caused by vitamin C deficiency, and can be prevented by having 10 milligrams of vitamin C a day. An early sign of scurvy is fatigue. If ignored, later symptoms are bleeding and bruising easily. British sailors were given a ration of citrus fruits on long voyages to prevent the onset of scurvy, hence the British nickname of Limey. Pectin is a structural heteropolysaccharide contained in the primary cell walls of plants. Limes and lemons as well as oranges and grapefruits are among the highest in this level.

This post is part of the Photo Friday meme,
and also part of the Food Friday meme,
and also part of the Orange you Glad It's Friday meme.

Thursday 2 March 2017


Hieracium known by the common name hawkweed and classically as hierakion (from ancient Greek ιεράξ, hierax 'hawk'), is a genus of the sunflower (Helianthus) family Asteraceae, and closely related to dandelion (Taraxacum), chicory (Cichorium), prickly lettuce (Lactuca) and sow thistle (Sonchus), which are part of the tribe Cichorieae. Hawkweeds, with their 10,000+ recorded species and subspecies, do their part to make Asteraceae the second largest family of flowers.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 1 March 2017


The Horse

Horsey, horsey, let me ride,
On your back so very high;
Let us gallop, let us stride
Make me feel as though I fly.

Let me sit so proud astride
While all rushes quickly by;
Brushing cares and woes aside
Take me to the seventh sky!

Oh my pony, pretty, pied,
Come and stand beside me nigh;
Let me mount you, let me ride,
Please, my wish do satisfy…

This post is part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.