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Saturday, 23 February 2013

More flowers and random kitten cuteness

More flowers and random kitten cuteness



This is Pebble looking thoughful ... for once. Usually he leaps into action before thinking although he is usually able to figure out how to get out of trouble when things get ... complicated.


The Pink Orchid Tree  is flowering AGAIN. Oh and I have 4 seedlings that I found under it which I assume are from seeds that dropped and germinated. I need to try and harvest the seed pods and germinate some myself.


This  is Ghost cozening  up to Brown Dog. They are best of freinds and Ghost has a strange habit of sticking his face in her fur and then doing the whole kneading thing.

Bleeding Heart

Gloriosa superba ( Gloriosa lily, glory lily)


Rocky a.k.a Nirvana Kitty / The Benevolent One ... in this instance looking very guilty because I was telling him off after catching him climbing the new shelf on which I had moved all my Zepheranthes rosea (Pink Rain lilies).

Photographic evidence. Unfortunately it only proves he is able to climb up NOT that he is responsbile for the paw prints amongst the squashed seedlings. I have covered the seed trays with coco wire to hopefully avert any further damage.



 Dwarf Red Ixora


 Dwarf Red Ixora


Blue Iris (Neomarica?)



Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Additional information:

Here is a list of my blogs:

·         Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters): http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.com/

·         The Blood of  Souls (language, translation and etymology) : http://thebloodofsouls.blogspot.com/

·         Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general) : http://whiskersonkittens-vincent.blogspot.com/




Transplanting cuttings

Transplanting cuttings

About a month after making a whole variety of cuttings from Cordyline fruticosa (Ti Plant) to Gardenia jasminoides Gardenias and Ixora I am now starting transplanting the plants into individual poly bags or into the ground.


These Ti cuttings have different root development due to my having made the cuttings over a period of several weeks.



This is one of the nicest examples of root development that I had. There were about ten cuttings in a big poly bag of river sand.  I also have ten smaller cuttings which I planted directly into 3/4 inch bags. The ones that were in the sand have been carefully transplanted along one side of the driveway. Earlier on I had planted a whole batch of cuttings directly into the bed on the otherside.


Here you can see the different stages of root development. Ideally I would have preferred to have them like the plant on the right. Now I know that I should leave them in for at least four weeks for the plants to develop roots of that extent. In any case all the Ti cuttings I prepared have survived.
However, next time I will make sure I do not mix cuttings started at different times in the same bag because the faster and better the root development the faster the plant will become established and grow. Unfortunately given the space available ... that is dog safe space I only had one big poly bag of river sand and another bag of soil.


For the Gardenias I used river silt in a seed tray 6 x 10 which gave me 60 plants per tray. I only did one tray because I was not sure what the result would be. In all I got 56 plants. The other 4 that did not make it were due to the silt being washed out of the holes and the cutting dying. So I would say that the success rate for rooting Gardenias is quite high.

For both the ti plants and the Gardenias I kept the sand or silt moist and in partial shade. I do not have a greenhouse / shadehouse or even shade cloth put up but although the area they were in gets some direct sun they are shaded by the house and a large mango tree and lemon tree.
River sand seems to work best in keeping the stems moist while providing good drainage. My main problem was keeping them from being disturbed which would damage the emerging rootlets.
Just today I discovered that one of the cats (Lamuja the mother cat) has just decided that one of the seed trays with hedge cuttings makes an ideal soft and cool spot to lie on.

I  think that the Gardenias I have are Gardenia jasminoides  but I am not 100% sure.

Here is an interesting plant I came across driving  in Safatoa Lefaga. Apparently the Samoan name is Ava o le Pusi which means The Cat's Whiskers. I have not yet identified the plant. I was kindly given four young plants which are now recovering.





Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.
 

Additional information:

·         Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters)

·         The Blood of  Souls (language, translation and etymology)

·         Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general)


References

Whistler, W. Arthur, “Wayside Plants of the Islands. A Guide to the Lowland Flora of the Pacific Islands including Hawai’i Samoa Tonga Tahiti Fiji Guam Belau”, Isle Botanica, Honolulu, 1995.

ISBN 0-9645426-0-9






Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Mystery Plant 2

Mystery Plant 2

Ok here is another Mystery Plant. I have seen this plant growing in at least four locations in Samoa although I do not think it is native to the islands. In anycase it does not appear in either W. Arthur Whistler's Wayside Plants of the Pacific Islands or Flowers of the Pacific Island Seashore (although I did not really expect to find it in the latter since it looks more like a forest plant.

The three locations where I have seen them are:
Malifa right on the left hand corner as you turn off the Cross Island Road to go to Lelata and up near Scalinis where you can see them peaking out of the bottom of the hedge through gaps. I suspect that it is being used as ground cover of sorts but cannot really tell.
Tanumalala where it was growing in a patch of several square meters.
Alafua at the dead end side of Arp Road on a broad flat plains-type area. I think someone planted it there or someshow it got there and spread over several square meters.







 Now Malifa could possibly qualify as Town Area while the land at Alafua although now pretty much surrounded by residences is still quasi farmland although that area has lain fallow for a while although techically it is under cultivation if you count the banana clumps that are growing there. Tanumalala is definately Farmland and I suspect that the person who planted the Heliconias, Calatheas and other tropical flowering plants there (since they are all introduced species) also planted them.

 Both Alafua and Malifa are relatively lowlying areas while Tanumalala is up in the mountains or highlands at least. I have no idea what the rainfall is at Alafua or Malifa but up at Tanumalala it is considerable it the nights are rather cool.

The locations at Tanumalala and Malifa get partial shade while the area at Alafua receives full sun.



The flowers are white however these are not flowers in the photos on the black tiles. They are seeds / grains.





From what I have seen they grow by sending up suckers from a spreading root system. They have long stems which lie on the ground.

Someone refered to them as Flax but I could find no flax plants that resembled these.


Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

 Additional information:
Here are some of my current blogs:

·         Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters)

·         The Blood of  Souls (language, translation and etymology)

·         Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general)


More Random Plants

More Random Plants


Sometimes the most ordinary plants are extraordinary if you just take the time to look at them and see them. Of course zoom and macro photography helps.

Clover (Alafua and Malifa)
I love clover for some weird reason. I suppose there is some ... reason behind that but I'm not going to delve into all that occult / mystical stuff.

Costus (Alafua)
 

Kingfisher (Alafua)

I was happy to see this little guy back. There were two that I saw around the banana and avocado trees before Cyclone Evan but this is the first time I have seen either of them since. Usually they were together so I hope that the other one is still around.



Wendelia Trilobata
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family) 
 




 


Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

 
Additional information:

Here are some of my current blogs:

·         Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters)

·         The Blood of  Souls (language, translation and etymology)

·         Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general)










Thursday, 7 February 2013

Blue Irises and Egyptian Starclusters



Blue Irises and Egyptian Star clusters

The thing about photographing flowers is that some of them unfortunately are only open for a short period of time or open and close during specific hours as is the case with Four O’clock (Mirabilis jalapa). This can lead to some disappointments not to mention missed photo opportunities if you do not have a camera at hand or come back later only to find that later was too late.


I have planted Blue Irises (Neomarica caerulea) in several locations at Malifa and Alafua. The thing with these flowers is that very saddly they are one day wonders. I saw one of them had flowered a few days ago and thought to myself that I should take a photo but as I was busy I decided to leave it till later. Unfortunately when I came back all I saw was the closed up flower already withering on the plant.


Fortunately I noticed that one of the other clumps had two buds developing so I have been checking them regularly. Today I was lucky as I had completely forgotten but was making cutting of some hibiscus and Pua taunofo among other plants when I was in the area where they are and remembered to check (since they are actually a bit obscured by some other plants) and there they were. This time I only briefly considered leaving the photos till latter but quickly changed my mind and hurried off to wash my hands and get my camera.


 








UNKNOWN
 

Torch Ginger (Etlingera elatior)
 
Egyptian Starclusters (Pentas lanceolata)
 
Egyptian Starclusters (Pentas lanceolata)




 


Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.



Additional information:

Here is a list of my blogs:

·         Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters): http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.com/

·         The Blood of  Souls (language, translation and etymology) : http://thebloodofsouls.blogspot.com/

·         Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general) : http://whiskersonkittens-vincent.blogspot.com/





Monday, 4 February 2013

Abbey de la Cambre

Abbey de la Cambre




The abbey grounds are rather large which makes sense since in those days such organisations were pretty much self sufficent. I took my time wandering around taking photos of the old buildings.



There were not as many people around as on the terraces but as with the terraces I was able to frame some decent shots excluding the visitors in most cases.







I Only just noticed the stairs going down to the pond NOW otherwise I would certainly have gone down to take some closeups and some pictures of the buildings and surroundings from different angles.



Additional details:

The Abbey of La Cambre  (French: Abbaye de La Cambre, Dutch: Abdij Ter Kameren) is a former Cistercian abbey in Ixellels, Brussels located in the Maelbeek valley between the the Forest of La Cambre and the Ixelles Ponds. It was founded in 1196 although the current buildings date from the 18th century.

The Sonian Forest (Dutch: Zoniënwoud,French: Forêt de Soignes) is a 4,421-hectare (10,920-acre) forest that lies across the south-eastern part ofBrussels, Belgium

 


Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters Blog by Vincent Albert Vermeulen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.


Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.be/.

Additional information:

Here is a list of my blogs:

· Flora and Fauna - Plants and Critters (on plants, animals as well as gardening, conservation and environmental matters): http://plantsandcritters.blogspot.com/

· The Blood of Souls (language, translation and etymology) : http://thebloodofsouls.blogspot.com/

· Whiskers on Kittens (Life with Kittens and Cats in general) : http://whiskersonkittens-vincent.blogspot.com/