A Few Snippets From The Yard

NOTE: I’m not sure if everyone knows, but if you click on one of my images, you’ll get the full size version.
EDIT: Added full resolution night sky image. Yep, great for wallpapers and stuff.

I’ve been indulgent. For a few years now I’ve been saying to myself that I will take photos of the things in nature around here that surprise, intrigue, and educate my head. I rarely do, but decided a few days ago to do it now. That’s why I’m posting more often as well. A blog is a good place to store memories and stories. The Greenbus has taught me that. Here is some random stuff from around the yard (the paddock you can see from the loo).

This tree has produced seed and it seems the ants like the idea:

Ants checking out the berries

Ants checking out the berries

The garden closest to the house produced an amazing flower last week. This plant shot this stem up, and over the course of 4 days, it bloomed. It didn’t have any leaves above ground. When the flower wilted, it produced leaves at the base. Anyone know what this is?

Side view of this bulb.

Side view of this bulb.

The bulb flower just as it began to open

The bulb flower just as it began to open

Beginning to open

Beginning to open

Almost at full bloom

Almost at full bloom

In four days, it was fully open

In four days, it was fully open

I will take a photo of the leaves and add to this post (slips out and comers back inside):

The leaves came after the flower wilted

The leaves came after the flower wilted

Down the paddock we have a few tall Bloodwoods, and in 4 out of 5 trees, there is a Celerywood growing from close to the base of the tree. I am searching for reasons, but common sense tells me a bird has carried the seed in its droppings. Sometimes their trunk get invasive enough to compete with the host tree for nutrients:

Celerywood sapling at base of Bloodwood

Celerywood sapling at base of Bloodwood

Mature Celerywood beside Bloodwood

Mature Celerywood beside Bloodwood

For those of you who don’t live in the tropics, you may not have heard of Sensitive Weed. This stuff is so called, because when you touch it, the leaves instantly close. The nasty thing about these plants is that they have spines on the stems, and they can be a minefield to walk through. In some places there is a pest called giant Sensitive Weed, and it grows in large, tangled patches, sometimes nearly 2 metres high. It completely chokes the land. I will post a video here showing how quick these plants close, but in the meantime, check these before and after shots out.

Sensitive weed

Sensitive weed

The sensitive weed immediately after being disturbed

The sensitive weed immediately after being disturbed

Down in the back corner is an old tree that has been through some hard times. It is still pretty solid though. Up in the tree is a huge basket fern. The basket itself is 2 metres at least at its widest point. The fronds add another 1.5 to 2 metres. I reckon you could get a swag and a mattress and some pillows, and make an awesome cosy puppy pile up there. Potentially…

The basket fern is high in the tree

The basket fern is high in the tree

This would make a soft bed

This would make a soft bed

Closer view of the basket fern.

Closer view of the basket fern.

Here is the husk of a Cicada after it morphed and broke out. You can see the split in the back of the exoskeleton:

The empty exoskeleton of a metamorphosed Cicada.

The empty exoskeleton of a metamorphosed Cicada.

My camera is showing its age, and is a little ‘clunky’. Taking movement free shots of stars is problematic, especially since I don’t have a tripod anymore. Besides that, even the apparent short time of 30 seconds is enough to capture movement in the skies. Here is an effort from tonight. I’ll play again later and try to shorten the exposure and still capture the light

Night_views

Orions_Belt_Big_Dipper

This is the final one I got. The original is a big 7MB file, ideal for wallpapers and stuff:

Full resolution night sky image. Taken around midnight, 22/23 December 2013.

Full resolution night sky image. Taken around midnight, 22/23 December 2013.

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