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Posts Tagged ‘trees’

My contribution for watery wednesday #42.

There were myriad puddles after the rain last weekend. They dotted the bikeway at almost every angle and it was inevitable that I  got wet and  dirty from splashes of muddy, murky rain water as the wheels of my bike spun through them.

All was not lost, I find reflections interesting as a subject so the abundance of  puddles gave me opportunity to further my interest somewhat.

And when I look at reflection such as this, I often wonder if there is a paralel universe inside there somewhere?

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In other parts of the bikeway, the water from the creek could be seen overflowing and covering parts of footpaths like in the photo below.  I am always tempted to cross this section with my bike when this occurs, just for a bit of adrenalin rush … Sometimes  going down the slope to the creek to have a better view…

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However, my logic usually prevails as I really can’t afford to damage my camera if I don’t make it to the other side relatively dry.. (though admittedly, I have accelerated down this slope once before, it’s probably best not to know what ensued.)

 

For more wonderful water pics, visit http://waterywednesday.blogspot.com/

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I went to the parklands today hoping I’d get to see some silvereyes like last week. Unfortunately, none sighted. I guess they have headed to the hotter climate to the north.  It has been quite cold for the last couple of days , so they probably made the right choice. Anyway, I did managed to get some relatively okay shots  as compared to previous attempts, of  an egret, heron, kookaburras as well as purple swamphens, ducks etc. which I think I’ll post in the next few days.

This post is for people who like trees in particular ( if any). I did a little side project whilst photographing the birds today though not much I’m afraid, as the lens I brought along wasn’t really suitable.

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Slightly obsessed with trees at the moment. Tree pics from the nature reserve. I’m going to try taking them in black and white next time.

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The Brisbane CBD perfectly framed by trees, taken up on the hill reserve.

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I had to include a photo of this bizarre looking tree stump that I stumbled across during my bushwalk in the forest reserve. What do you think it looks like?

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Here is a photo I took of a weeping fig tree in the Botanic Gardens. It is a tall, shady tree. I wanted to take better pics but the tree was near a wedding lawn and the bride had arrived all made up with the bridemaids . I could even  hear the sound of the bagpipes playing at many points of the Gardens after I left.

Apparently, this tree is a native of Malaysia. I liked the silhouette of the fig tree against the sun. (I adjusted the d-light for this pic so it looks lighter than it was. ) There is also a weeping fig tree avenue in the Botanic Gardens near the CBD and one in the CBD near the drinking fountain. See here.

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*Update  6/6/09 –

I thought I’ll update with a pic of the weeping fig trees avenue at the City Botanic Gardens. There is a Greenfest this weekend, that’s why you can see some tents in the background, lots of green environmental stuff on display.

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I was heading to the front gate of Botanic Gardens as it was almost closing time, but was sidetracked by the flora and fauna on the way up there.  There were the cockatoos  which I tried to take pics up  close (in vain, I might add because they kept flying away or going up a higher branch),  and then there was a lovely, shady tree with red flowers which caught my eye called red hot poker tree (Erythrina Abyssinica), which I thought was quite an amusing name for a tree.

And then there was this tree….

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Night was approaching and the twilight framed the tree’s silhouette beautifully against the setting sun.  I had been observing the tree earlier in between taking pictures of the aloe plants and cactuses.   I’m  sure I’ve seen this tree somewhere or maybe it was  in a previous life….(I’m being slightly melodramatic). Or maybe this is an earth version of the famed Lote tree (Sidratul Muntaha) that separates the heaven and the earth. It reached my inner psyche so  I had to ‘tawaf’ (encircled)  around it to adore its beauty.

This is another picture of the tree from another angle.

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I checked the sign for the name and it said ” Bombacacaea, Adansonia Grandidieri, Madagascar”. When I came back home, I googled the name  and found out  it was a species of the baobab tree from Madagascar.  There are 8 species in the world apparently, 6 from Madagascar and 1 from Africa and 1 from Australia.

The one from Africa is called “Adansonia Digitata” (which I am focusing on),  is commonly known as “boaboa”, “bottle tree” or “upside down tree” because during the dry season (7-9 months a year), the tree’s branches are devoid of leaves and hence makes it look like it was planted upside down with its roots sticking out.

“The baobab is an enormous tree, but not due to its height: it reaches a maximum of 31.2 m (104 ft), but to its thickness: the trunk can be 11 m (38 ft) in diameter while the diameter of the canopy can be 100 m (333 ft), covering 6-7,000 square meters.The gray bark can be 5-10 cm (2-4 inches) thick. But the roots of the tree are extremely large: up to 50 m (166 ft) long. “ Softpedia

I recall seeing one such tree being the centrepoint in a documentary about wildlife in the plains of the African savanna. It was inhabited by a troop of baboons that feasted on its nutritious fruits.  Elephants also like to strip its bark to find moisture in the dry season. It looked very impressive with its  big wide ebony trunks and long outreached branches against the backdrop of  the seemingly endless grassland.

Some baobab trees are believed to be thousand of years old like here and here but apparently the tree’s true age can only be ascertained by carbon dating as it is widely thought that baobab trees do not produce annual rings. I guess it could live so long and also withstand the elements of nature like the wind and rain due to its large concrete roots embedded firmly inside the earth. It is also called “The tree of life” because of its long life span , hence, some individual trees can even be older than the Pyramids of Giza!

Perhaps the most notable mention of the baobab tree is in the philosophical fiction , The Little Prince” written and illustrated by Antoine de Saint Exupery and marketed as a children’s book (Adults read it too 🙂 . One of my fave books, it really needs an entry by itself). About a prince from a small planet who came to earth to visit. The little prince thinks the seeds of baobabs are bad because when they can grow up into trees , they can split his little planet into pieces. There is also an illustration of  three baobab trees crowding the little prince ‘s tiny planet in the book.

On the contrary, in real life , nutrients or products from the baobab tree have many useful or medicinal properties , and for this reason, it is sometimes called “The magic tree” or “The small pharmacy/chemist”. (This tree really has many nicknames. ) See this. Studies have even been done to see the correlation of baobab trees and the demographic pattern in Africa. It really is an amazing tree not only for it usefulness but when it reaches 800 years or a millenium ,it looks pretty awesome. Some of them are quite hollow inside, used as a temporary prison in the olden days in Australia and inside another one (which is probably 5000 years old) has even been turned into a pub in South Africa . (You can see it if you follow one of  the link up there.)

This entry is beginning to sound a little too academic so I’ll stop here.

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