About Me

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A garden enthusiast who loves to travel and capture the beauty of places and freeze the memories of her travels in photographs, as well as document her experiences in verse...thankful for the simple pleasures in life.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tropical Rhododendrons

I often go gaga over the impressive displays of masses of rhododendrons in the gardens in temperate countries, not realising that we have our equivalent in the tropics. The Senduduk as we know it by its local Malay name here, is actually known as the Singapore Rhododendron. It is not only found in Singapore of course; it is found in South East Asia, China, Taiwan and in the sub tropical regions of Australia.

The Senduduk belongs to the melastoma family, and this shrub grows by the wayside of roads and on wasteland, so it is not much valued as a garden plant. However it flowers freely, and is rather pretty. The shrubs that I see being used lately for landscaping in my hometown are even prettier. I assume this newcomer is a new variety, as the petals have a different shape, but the leaves are similar to Senduduk. The common Senduduk have broader, rounded petals. I wonder what this new variety is named. If any of you out there know the identity of this particular melastoma, do tell.

Here are some potted shrubs that I photographed by the Melaka River along the boardwalk. The shrubs are eye-catching to say the least. The flowers beckon passers-by to admire their striking colours. So, here they are for you to get closer to them as you stroll along the boardwalk with me.

mysterious stranger
hiding who you really are
 whispers speak of you

Linking to:
Fertilizer Friday
Macro Friday
Macro Flowers Saturday
Haiku Heights
Haiku My Heart

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Wild About Wildflowers

For Flaunt Your Flowers on Tootsie's Fertiliser Friday, I shall be flaunting today, not my own flowers from Mygardenhaven, but instead, I shall flaunt my photographs of Australian wildflowers.

I was in Western Australia last week, and I was on the  look out for Australian wildflowers. No, I didn't go trekking in the bushland. That would have been an adventure, I know, but the best place to find them all together was of course King's Park Perth Botanic Gardens. The plants here are mostly native trees and bush flora of Western Australia.

If you are visiting King's Park, make sure you have wheels...a bicycle, or if you are from out of town, a rental vehicle. Why? Because this wouldn't be your usual morning walk in the park where you take a stroll and cover the area in half an hour. The park is approximately 4 sq kilometres,  the largest inner city park in the world! 

A little more about King's Park before we get to the wildflowers. This is a beautiful park and the panoramic view of the Swan River as well as of the city from Mount Eliza, where the State War Memorial Precinct is, is captivating.


These are the famed Boab Tree, or the Gija jumulu, ancient giants ( the trees can grow up to a thousand odd years! ) from the Kimberly region, north of Western Australia. They travelled 3000km to be part of King's Park. They certainly are the major attraction here. I got to see these trees in the dry winter season, so they are bare of leaves. The trees begin to flower and fruit in the wet season in September. I was here one month too early to witness this. I was surprised to learn that almost every part of the tree can be used...for food, shelter and medicine! The boab tree roots are said to be delicious, the young leaves can be added to salads, and the seeds are high in vitamin C content! Not bad coming from a  bottle-shaped tree.

P1000581.jpg image by mygardenhaven
For Haiku Heights (Friendship)

the tree of friendship

it nourishes and comforts

stay rooted yet free

Here we are at the Botanic Garden. There are about 2000 species of Australian native flora here, and I'm going to show you all of them!? That would take me a week to prepare such a post,, not all of them. Besides, like I mentioned earlier, my visit was a bit too early. The peak of the wildflower blooming season is from September to October. That's when the annual King's Park Festival is held where among other events, the flaunting of beautiful wildflowers takes the limelight. Here are the ones that were blooming, though. 

This was the lone Kangaroo Paw I encountered. It is the Mangles Kangaroo Paw and has the singular  honour of being the floral emblem of Western Australia.


These pretty little things were in abundance. They are Qualup Bells.


This is decidedly my all-time favourite shot. I am deliriously happy each time I look at this photograph. Oh, of course I love the golden yellow Coast Banksia here, and I also love the shape of the leaves. But oh how I adore that bird for resting there and allowing me to capture that pose! I don't even know its name. It was a lovely, lovely encounter. I read that banksias produce lots of nectar, and that must have been a pitstop for the thirsty bird. I also read that the aborigines also partake of the sweet nectar.

For more images of King's Park and Western Australia, check out my travel-i-tales blog.
Till we meet again, cheers mate!

Linking to:
Fertilizer Friday
Macro Friday
Macro Flowers Saturday
Haiku Heights
Haiku My Heart