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letting nature back in

nature and nurture in suburban spaces

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Plants

On being abstracted

Having been somewhat abstracted of late, I thought some rather more abstract images might be appropriate for this post. All these photos I took in the garden during the past few weeks.

In art and photography abstracts tend to be less associated with the concretely representational.  There are no hard and fast rules or definitive definitions, but abstracts deal more with patterns and forms, relationships between lines, shapes, textures, colours and contrasts, rather than with any realistic depiction. Continue reading “On being abstracted”

Wildflowers, war and wonder: Mementos of an English childhood

Many people hang on to keepsakes from their childhood. Photographs, letters, drawings, cards and other reminders are special tokens from times past and distant spaces. Continue reading “Wildflowers, war and wonder: Mementos of an English childhood”

Autumnal orange flowers

Orange is associated with autumn. In our garden this colour is most evident in flowers blooming during March and April, rather than in leaves turning colour on the deciduous trees. Continue reading “Autumnal orange flowers”

Agapanthus: A true blue summer flowerer

The usually blue-flowered Agapanthus brightens South African gardens, and many gardens around the world, during the summer. It is an easy-going plant that I pretty much take for granted, so I was surprised to find that its classification has been a complex issue for botanists. Continue reading “Agapanthus: A true blue summer flowerer”

Powder-puff tree: Subtropical swamp mysteries in the garden

There is something mysterious about the Powder-puff tree. Although associated with mangroves it can thrive with dry feet in the garden, exuding a powerful pungency when in flower, it has a lush subtropical presence yet remains self-contained. Continue reading “Powder-puff tree: Subtropical swamp mysteries in the garden”

Holiday cheerfulness: The sunshine colours of yellow

There are two dictionary definitions of cheerfulness: first, the quality or state of being noticeably happy and optimistic; and second, the quality of causing happiness. Continue reading “Holiday cheerfulness: The sunshine colours of yellow”

Mistbelt grassland flowers in the summer time

Mistbelt grasslands sustain a rich diversity of life, especially when they form part of a complex mosaic that includes also forest, wetlands and rivers and streams. Continue reading “Mistbelt grassland flowers in the summer time”

Mistbelt Forest in close up

Moving in after last week’s broader view of mistbelt forests, here is a more micro perspective with a selection of photos to celebrate forest treasures, and there are fewer words too. (Cue smiley face here.) Continue reading “Mistbelt Forest in close up”

Mistbelt forests of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands

The suburb I live in nestles up against commercial plantations on the edge of town. Pre the colonial era and the development of urban settlement, what is now plantation and suburbia was part of a mosaic of mistbelt forest and grassland. Continue reading “Mistbelt forests of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands”

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