Friday, March 30, 2012

Flower Flaunt Friday ... A lovely surprise.

So, are you ready to become part of Earth Hour tomorrow?  I think gardeners worldwide would probably make up a huge part of the numbers that show their support for this initiative.  It's all about protecting our planet and helping to create a sustainable future ... a future where the generations that come after us can live and garden in a happy, healthy global environment. 

Well, before I go on further about Earth Hour, I'll share what I'm lucky enough to have blooming in my garden this week.  I was actually despairing just a little that I would have nothing new to share for my Flower Flaunt this week.

After the 'wet' season, most of the flowering plants are looking a little brow-beaten, sad and dismal.  They all need plenty of sunshine and some fertiliser.  But here's the great thing about gardens ... there's always the chance of some fabulous unexpected surprise.  I was all prepared to show off the 'usuals' for this time of year, when I just happened to stroll out into my shadehouse garden and I noticed this tiny little beauty.

It's such a small thing, but it certainly stood out in amongst the various pots sitting on the cane lattice table in the middle of my shadehouse garden.

Now, I'm not an Orchid expert and I really have no idea what this little one might be.  I'm hoping someone will help out with an I.D.

I was given a few little pieces of various Orchids two years ago now, and not being into Orchids, I just threw the pieces in pots and promptly forgot about them.  The pots sat in a corner of the shadehouse garden that I rarely ventured to, until the end of last year.  Almost the entire year last year was a time of great change and clean-up in every corner of the garden, and I finally got to moving the potted Orchids out of their dark and dank corner onto a little cane lattice table that was situated in the middle of the shadehouse.    This is the first one that has bloomed.

Now onto the 'usuals' ...

 Ixora 'Twilight Glow',

Mussaenda philippica 'Aurore',


Pentas lannceolata,

 Mandevilla 'White Fantasy',

 Pseudomussaenda flava, also known as Mussaneda lutea,

Salvia 'Dusky Hues',

more Pentas lanceolata and Salvia 'Dusky Hues'.

Now back to something that may be a surprise for some, but probably not for most.  This coming Saturday, the last Saturday of March, is the time for 'Earth Hour'.

From an event that began here in Australia, Earth Hour has now spread around the world.  Back in 2007, the Worldwide Fund For Nature and the executives at 'Sydney Morning Herald' conceived the idea of encouraging business places and households to turn off all their lights for an hour.  It was hoped that this action would raise awareness about climate change and the effect the human race is having on our planet.

So, on Saturday, March 31st, 2007, over 2 million residents of Sydney turned off their lights for an hour from 7.30 to 8.30 pm.  But it didn't stop there.  The idea caught on!

Earth Hour became an international event in 2008.  2011 was the biggest year in the five-year history of the event.  It's been estimated that over 5,000 cities and towns around the world joined in this action, involving more than a billion people in every continent of our world.

Of course, the event has drawn a lot of criticism mainly centering on the notion that the action of simply turning off lights for an hour would not change attitudes to climate change or have any real benefit for the environment at all.  But I think the initial idea behind the whole thing was simply to raise awareness and create a conversation among people about just how our actions create the environment in which we all have to live.  That conversation has now spread worldwide and I believe the 2012 Earth Hour campaign is now encouraging people to think beyond that hour and think long and hard about sustainable actions and sustainable living.

Will you turn off all your lights for an hour from 8.30 pm tomorrow ... or possibly more?  Go to the official Earth Hour link to see what all the fuss is about:  Earth Hour 2012

I'm joining Tootsie for her  Fertilizer Friday / Flaunt Your Flowers meme

and Nix for Floral Friday Fotos

Friday, March 16, 2012

Flower Flaunt Friday ... On This Dreary Rainy Friday.

We've had almost non-stop rain now since the beginning of the month.  This is just La Nina reminding us that the 'wet' season is most certainly not over yet, even though Summer is over.  I don't think we've seen old man Sun this particular week since about Sunday ... most appropriate!

As I work every day, except Friday, the rain really doesn't bother me.  I know how much the garden needs the 'wet' season rain and so far this year, it's been tolerable heavy rainfall ... not that horrid violent and torrential stuff we sometimes get.  But when Friday rolls around and there's no chance of getting out into the garden, I get a little miffed! 

That's the case today.  It has not stopped raining since about 6.00 am this morning, and it looks set in for the entire day.  So, unfortunately I can't share too much of what's blooming this Friday except what I can see from the verandah or from inside the house.

There's always Hibiscus blooms visible from the verandah, right next to spot where I sit and enjoy my morning cuppa.

At the bottom of the verandah stairs it's possible to spot some Ixora and Mussaenda blooms.  Note too, the fungi growing on the stairway railings.  That will give you an idea of just how much rain we've been receiving.

From the back verandah it's possible to spot the Torenia, Angelonia and Gomphrena flowers on the courtyard garden table, and the pots of Salvia in the background.  The view is a little obscured by all those container plants though.

They usually sit under the eaves that you can see on either side of the courtyard, and often miss out on the raindrops that fall during our wet season.  This morning though, I had the chance to drag some of them out so they could enjoy a refreshing shower.

From inside the house I can look out onto the shadehouse garden and, if I look carefully, I can spot Dragonwing Begonia blooms, some Impatiens flowers, a few Costus productus blooms, a Dendrobium Orchid in bloom, and my beautiful Hedychium coronarium which is showing it first flowers for the year.

In case you missed some of these, here are a couple of shots I took yesterday when I braved the light showers to get photos of the lovely Orchid flower and white Ginger flower.  It's bucketing down too heavily for me to go out there today.

Well, that's it for today.  I plan to stay high and dry inside for the rest of the afternoon.  It's been great weather for ducks ... not so great for wallabies.

I'm joining Tootsie for her Fertilizer Friday / Flaunt Your Flowers meme.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Flower Flaunt Friday ... From A Fabulous Sub-Tropical Park, Part 2.

Yes I'm continuing the theme started last Flower Flaunt Friday ... here's part two.

Moving away from the Spectacle Garden at the Roma Street Parklands, let's take a look at what else was blooming as I wandered around the various other gardens in this inner city park.



 Another Brug


 Anigozanthos or Kangaroo Paw,


 Costus or Spiral Ginger,

Dichorisandra thrysiflora or Blue Ginger,

Mandevilla 'Red Riding Hood',


Costus speciosus or Crepe Ginger,

Medinilla magnifica,

Globba winitii,



 unknown Succulent,



and grasses were all blooming.

There were huge drifts of blooming Cannas and New Guinea Impatiens,

and lovely patches of flowering Angelonias as well.

For the final instalment of this series, next week I'll show just a few shots of the Bromeliad garden which was full of Broms in bloom ... a magical sight.

I'm joining Tootsie for Fertilizer Friday / Flaunt Your Flowers.

I'm also joining Nix for Floral Friday Fotos

Macro Flowers Saturday

and Weekend Flowers

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