Trees and some flowers in MtLawleyShire

I went for a walk today, down to Hyde Park.  It is a mess, and the water levels are so low, which, considering the heat we’ve been having is not surprising, even though we have had some rain.  I’m still trying to get the hang of the new camera, so many of these trees are those I have photographed before, but not all of them turned out.  Something to do with – I think – ISO or something…sigh.  I will sort it out, eventually.  But in the meantime…

It was a very windy afternoon, so I wasn’t able to take as many flower photos as I wanted, but I was successful with some.

I don’t know what the 1st one is, the next is a hibiscus.

despite the wind  hibiscus

& I have no idea what these are, but the colour is amazing!

startling colour  more startling colour

& these are like pieces of sun fallen into a street side flower garden:

pretty little yellow  little sun

A Jacaranda with some flowers still:

still flowering

Then into Hyde Park.  This Morten Bay stands like a sentry

sentry

The path is sun-drenched, casting all in tones of shadow and light:

sun drenched  shade

striped with light  many-armed goddess

Plane Trees:

Hyde Park plane tree  Hyde Park_Plane tree_2

full green

Jacaranda and details of a Morten Bay fig:

tree shapes  an ancient wound

another fig and this other tree of massivity:

play of shadows  massivity

Details of a massive Morten Bay on the edge of the park:

detail_1  detail_2

The whole tree (almost):

magnificence

various trees from the walk home:

light on jacaranda branches light on leaves

 

Mary Street  curling branches

& this: sunsetty light on a young Jacaranda

sunsetty light on a young jacaranda

I hope to walk tomorrow as well, so maybe there will be another post soon.

I hope you enjoyed these few flowers & trees.

 

Another corner of MtLawleyShire

I walked down to meet a friend on Beaufort Street.  Some of the flowers were lovely

 

& as I passed the sheoak, I thought it looked strange – what was all that red?

Goodness!  Flowers!  The sheoak is flowering!  I have never seen sheoak flowers before.  Tiny & pretty and such a lovely colour.

 

I didn’t have time to go into Hyde Park, but from the other side of the road – a huge Morten Bay fig and the mass of one of the great conifers:

 

As I walked down the road, the brilliance of a liquid amber‘s autumn flames into the sky (most other liquid ambers are still green)

Morten Bay fig trees lining the street:

 

This one had almost perfect symmetry in the arrangement of its branches:

Then my friend and I walked with her dog down to a park on the corner of Bulwer and Beaufort Street.  It’s more an oval than a park, fringed with trees.  Plane trees on one side looking healthy, but on the other, not so healthy:

 

But still beautiful:

 

A couple of Moreton Bay Figs:

 

And then a massive one on the city side of the park:

 

The whole tree is huge:

walking back up Beaufort, I had time to photograph this towering gum:

 

Behind the gum was a conifer and amongst the branches – a wattled honeyeater

And home: sunset on the flowering watering and the gum tree behind

and a willy wagtail chirping and snatching insects from the ether

and there she is – my fluffy little darling 🙂

 

Out of mtlawleyshire #2: Trees in the University grounds

Here is the 2nd of the posts from my little outing yesterday to the University of Western Australia.  I can’t include all the photos. – there’s too many.

All these are from within the university grounds, and only a small portion of the grounds at that, but I was still spoilt for choice.  And it was raining, raining, raining!

First, a massive conifer – the detail of the trunk attracted me:

 

Then a massive tree I saw from a doorway:

 

It is really a huge tree:

the colours of bark in a group of trees outside the faculty where I met my friend:

 

2 trees: the one behind is a scribbly gum – more on them later

just love the alien look of this

a series of tall, wet gums:

 

   

 

Now the lemon scented gum.  Of course I would take photos of this lovely tree.  Though I was hampered by rain threatening to fall on the lens of my little camera.  I’m quite sure that would be disaster!

 

 

Trees and foliage from across the lawn

: 

 

The moreton bay fig.  I love how they gleam in the wet:

 

 

Now – the scribbly gum.  It gets its name from the bark which is, I read somewhere, caused by little greeblies munching through the bark – obviously not harming the tree, just giving this bark the look of having been scribbled on.  When I next go to the uni, if it’s a fine day, I will take more photos.  I love rain, but it does – well, it hampers some activities.

 

 

Of course there are plane trees, most around the internal carparks.  But the detail of the trunk, with the gloss of rain shine, brings out the most wonderful colours and reminds me I must go down to Hyde Park again before too long.

 

These guys are everywhere, especially around what used to be known as the Arts Department (where I did my Masters).

 

detail of a beautiful trunk.

These were taken from across an oval while the rain was pouring down – though you can’t see the rain.

 

The most untidy of all the trees: stringy bark!

 

just beautiful trees:

 

and home – well, it was still raining so she was inside on the armchair amongst the books

There are so many photos I didn’t include.  Heaps.  And now I’ve run out of time to do another post, but they will remain on my computer for use another time.

I hope this wasn’t too large and that you enjoyed it.

Keira 🙂

mtlawleyshire’s peppermint trees

The Peppermint tree is a native of South Western Australia and in the older suburbs, it is often seen as a street tree.

When we first moved to Mt Lawley, there was a huge one in the backyard.  I loved to climb it and sit in its huge spreading branches.  From a distance, it can look like a willow because of its leaves and they way they droop, but up close and personal – they are nothing alike.

They are one of my favourite trees (though I have a feeling that all trees are my favourites.

So, today, I take you around the other way, into Mt Lawley itself rather than towards Highgate or North Perth.  And I will concentrate only on Peppermint trees.  The others will have to wait for another post 🙂  This is where I used to walk and run with my dog when I was a kid, around this area.  It’s familiar territory, and the trees are like old friends.  I mourn the tree in out backyard because it was chopped down and the huge garden is gone now, filled with a huge house that has no garden at all.  It’s very sad and short-sighted.

First – street trees to give you an idea of the entire tree.  Like many Australian trees, they are not the tidiest looking people 🙂

 

and I caught a wattled honeyeater on top of this tree – sadly with his back to me & before I could take another photo, he had flown off.

 

Leaves and branches.  They are wonderful shapes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

details of the bark and trunks:

 

 

 

And the reason I walked this way today was to visit the Mt Lawley Cenotaph – the war memorial.  For Australians and New Zealanders, today is a sadly special day: Anzac Day which remembers the thousands of young lives lost (when Australia had a population of 5 million) during the 1915 Gallipoli campaign .  It was also the time when Turkey became the modern nation it is today – & Ataturk paid Australians a gracious acknowledgment of his success and the terrible loss Australians had suffered: Mothers,  do not weep for your sons.  They sleep with us and we honour them.  He said something like that.  There is a statue to him in Albany, Western Australia, which is the last part of Australia the soldiers saw.

This day also commemorates the Australians lost in all wars, as well as those lives lost on the Western Front in Europe in the first of the ‘wars to end all wars’.

The peppermint trees to me, with their gnarled old limbs at least as old as that war, because this is one of the oldest parts of Perth.

So – Lest we Forget.  ‘At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, we will remember them.’

Flowering rosemary from my garden is amongst all these flowers.

and a final photo of a peppermint tree. the shape just cried out for black and white.

 

 

The eastern border of mtlawleyshire

On Friday, my camera and I took a little drive to the eastern borders of MtLawleyshire – a park on the banks of the Swan River.  It’s a ‘people’ park – it has an oval for sports, a children’s playpark, basketball practice area and through it runs the cycling track that goes throughout Perth.  It is still in Mt Lawley itself, whereas Hyde Park is actually just in Highgate, even though it is only 10 minutes walk from where I live, and this park would take at least 20 minutes to walk – maybe longer.

Despite being a park with all sorts of areas for activities, it still has its quiet areas, its tree areas, and, of course, the river, as well as small wetlands.  Unlike Hyde Park, it still has that sense of the wilderness that must have been, not so long ago.  Now it is a wealthy area, in fact, I parked on the richest street in Perth, and to live in such an area, yes I can see why you would want to.  Quiet and very beautiful.

The first things I saw were the plane trees.  Not as many as in Hyde Park, and closer to the road.

   

 

and there were the beautiful Moreton Bay figs:

 

 

 

And this one: the most astonishing Moreton Bay I have ever seen:

Then there were very many native gum trees – all beautiful.

This is the bark from one:

Then there are these:

 

The sheoaks and bottlebush make wonderful delicate patterns with their branches and foliage:

 

 

and here are sheoaks at the river’s edge:

These trees are like great shaggy border guards on the river’s edge: the edge of MtLawleyShire 🙂

Here are more pictures from the edge, the border:

 

 

 

And yes, we come to the water’s edge which is also part of a small wetlands.  It’s filled with grasses and strange trees and something that looks like flowering heather, but it can’t be:

 

 

 

On the other side, there are trees too 🙂

and when I came home?

Yes, she was in my chair!

Tomorrow, there will be a post of me out of – and above MtLawleyshire!

I hope you have enjoyed my little excursion to the eastern borders of my little ‘shire’.  Keira 🙂

MtLawleyShire’s smallest park?

Brigatti Gardens.  I can’t find why it’s there, or the reason for the name, but it’s obviously been there for a long time, this pocket-sized park with huge trees.   It holds a small children’s play set, but that’s all.  It’s well kept and neat, & while I’m not saying Hyde Park is a tangle, it has the islands in the middle of the ponds which give it an unmanicured heart.  These tiny gardens are really that: a calm and tended garden.  It’s maybe the size of an old house block (they are much smaller these days), in quiet streets down from the trendy section of Beaufort Street – we could call it ‘upper Beaufort” as opposed to ‘lower Beaufort’ where the supermarket, post office and theatre are.  Ha ha… No.  I like both ends of MtLawleyShire’s Beaufort Street.  ‘Upper’ is in Highgate which is where this pocket park, Brigatti Gardens, is.

Not all the trees in these Gardens are plane trees or Morten Bay figs, but most of them are.

This is a detail of bark from a tree I don’t know: 

And this one remind me of a tuning fork:

But mostly, it’s plane trees, Morten Bay figs and small garden areas planted with the distinctly non-native Agapanthus.  Of course, the trees aren’t native either – plane trees aren’t native to Australia & Morten Bay figs are originally from the east coast: Queensland & NSW, but they do well here too.

So, this post is all trees with smidgens of sky and hints of road, cars & surrounding buildings.  But it’s the trees I am concentrating on.  Rather nice houses line the surrounding streets & as I walked around, I thought how lovely it must be to live with the sound of the wind rustling through the leaves and tall branches.  And the birds that must live there!  Honey eaters and magpies, magpie larks and willy wagtails.  I saw not a one while I was there.  It was strangely quiet, empty, with only the rustling trees whispering their ancient sweet nothings to me.

First, the Morten Bay Figs.  There weren’t many.  They are huge trees and this is not a huge park, but there were enough 🙂

Branches:

 

 

Leaves:

 

 

the massive trunks:

 

 

Plane trees:

 

 

Branches:

 

 

 

Mingled leaves and branches of both plane trees & Morten Bay figs:

 

 

and finally, a b&w of a looping branch:

For such a little park, there were many angles and many details that delighted my little camera.  I hope the results delight you 🙂

Keira.

Within MtLawleyShire – another park

This is a small park over the road from the campus of my university: Ron Stone park.  The Wast Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), part of Edith Cowan University, often do performances there.

It’s nothing like Hyde Park, but does have a pond with one island and is frequented by water birds.  There are many Jacaranda trees, and in Spring, they do look stunning, but I’ve concentrated on the island.  In the centre is a huge gum tree – I don’t know it’s a ghost gum or not, but has a white trunk.  I know it’s not a lemon scented – it’s growing habit it way too straight.  And I couldn’t get any close-ups except for zoom, because there’s no way onto the island.

 

 

It’s a pretty little place, the island, all delightful shadows, colours & tangles.  This is the island from a distance which gives you some idea of the height of the gum:

 

And this is a view of the island side on:

The following are zoomed shots of the plants on the island, at the foot of the tall white gum.

 

There are extensive reed beds, exposed by the low water levels, and they look astonishingly green.

Various views of the island and reflections of trees in the grounds around the pond, with Autumn colours belying the hot temperatures we’ve been experiencing:

 

 

There are some fascinating trees but I ran out of time, so only 3 today.  But I will be going to uni again, so there will be more:

   

And here is a magpie lark who kindly posed for me:

 

I hope you enjoyed my little sojourn in the easterly edge of MtLawleyShire.

Keira 🙂

Getting caught in the rain

This time, I start out with my cat.  I love the way she sleeps: 

  

then she woke up

After cuddles, I set off, looking forward to my walk after a week of no walking.

Rain was forecast, and there were clouds, but also sunshine and bright blue sky.

Then I heard the mournful calls of black cockatoos: these birds are heading for extinction.  They are flocking to Perth because of the fires and logging that has ruined their food supply.  When we first moved here, the flocks were huge.  Not any more.  They are beautiful birds.  There was a story that when they were flying and calling, it meant rain.  I managed to photograph them, and where they flew, the clouds were grey.

 

I wish I could have taken closer shots, but these I took without my glasses, quickly and aiming towards the sound.

When I got to the entrance to the park, the ground was covered with the remains of pine cones.  The cockatoos love them:

 

Then I got caught by the shifting light and shadow amongst the green and shadows

 

The water in the ponds is still decreasing, but the birds don’t seem to mind

 

and then, of course, all the trees.  plane tree branches with their yellowing leaves against evergreens and a glorious plane tree in its gold and green:

 

I tried to capture the light on this Morten Bay Fig:

Looking up the trunk of a plane tree to the sky, and just the trunk:

 

Then I was caught by the contrast of the brilliant green of Jacaranda trees against the sky & the dark of closer trees, & the contrast between a palm and a Morten Bay Fig:

 

There is still some cloud blossom:

Trees behind one of the islands & the colour of those plane tree leaves!

Then – it rained!

 

 

 

The brilliant green of Jacaranda through dark branches was slightly blurred by rain.


Then there was serenity:

Before it rained again & I was unable to resist taking my camera out & it got ruined, I thought I should go home.

I passed this Morten Bay Fig, rain-stained:

Then I passed one of the Norfolk Pines:

 

A pine cone:

And from the William Street edge of the park:

 

Some of the trees are so beautifully green:

 

And there is a small tree that has brilliant red flowers – I didn’t expect to see any flowers at this time of year:

And in the sky –

and on the way home – two flowers.

 

When I got home, my fat little cat was inside.  She doesn’t like the rain 🙂

The Water levels are dropping

I left my walk a little last this afternoon and it was almost sunset by the time I got to the park.  So, no sunset photos tonight.  And the park was fill of joggers which meant it was difficult taking photos.  That seems to happen every now and then – all these personal trainers must decide to meet and do the running with their clients en masse.  It does ruin the place for everyone else, for all the dog walkers, the people who power walk around the ponds, the mums pushing babies in prams, the old folk out getting their daily constitutional.  The foreign students here to learn English taking time out from studies and loneliness.  When the joggers are out like that, everyone has to dodge and try to walk somewhere else, but it’s not much fun.

It wasn’t as hot today as yesterday, but the light was as bright.  There is the possibility of rain by the end of the week, but that was the forecast for last week and it evaporated before the day was even close, so I’m not holding my breath.  But I hope it does rain.

These photos are from today & yesterday and the dried out bed of the ponds is almost shocking.  But there is still beauty – & water.  And birds.  The Autumn colouring of the leaves is unmistakable and there are more leaves on the ground.

Yesterday, there was a moment when there was no-one around and a sudden wind blew from the south-west.  It blew screes of leaves into the water, and the ducks scurried and scattered.  THe trees roared and leaves flew, all under a brilliant blue sky in sparkling sunlight, heat dappled under the trees like the shade.  It was a moment you can’t photograph but made me realize this really is Autumn.  It’s going to get a little cooler perhaps, and maybe we won’t have any more 40 degree days, but this is as good as it gets.  I miss a real Autumn.

I’ve included a selection of photos from both yesterday & today.   think you have to ‘mouse over’ the images to get the titles.  Not sure whether I’ve managed to include the description or not…

These are yesterdays.  I didn’t have much time to walk around the park.

          after 2 days, the water had retreated & the heat of the days had dried out the pond floor.  It looked as though it had never been under water       & the birds are taking full advantage.   but just out of sight is the dry section of the previous photo.

Such an 'English' looking park :-)      

The next ones are from this afternoon’s walk.

           

             

            

              

& then the memory card was full because I forgot to clear it.

Sigh.

Shall try for some more tomorrow.

Hyde Park

I went walking with my little camera this afternoon.  It was still hot and I wondered whether there would be signs of what has become ‘mythical’ Autumn here in Perth.  Up north, a cyclone is battering the Pilbara and I have to admit I envy them the rain.  We could do with some here.  The interior will be getting it as well, a great swathe of cloud from the Pilbara all the way down to the south coast.  Perth is in a narrow coastal band that misses out.  We will just get squeezed between the various weather systems, and already, what had been forecast as a week where the temps would go down to 24, there’s nothing below 26 and nights not below 15.

It was a hot walk, and I wondered if the smoke on the horizon from Bold Park, a bush reserve near City Beach, almost on the beach, would affect the sunset, but kept going towards Hyde Park.

There was a wedding on, so there were quite a few people around.  I got some good shots though.  One of the things I’ve noticed is that, as the water level in the ponds has dropped, the bird life has changed (& this afternoon, for the first time, the ponds stank.  They are drying out).  There are a lot more waders around: storks and herons and spoonbills along with the normal sacred ibis and ducks and the goose.

The leaves are definitely browning, and in the light, the golden cast was astonishing.  The heat, the sunlight, they weren’t autumnal at all, but the leaves were.

                                          

 

                  

             

It’s actually rather difficult to arrange these photos & include text.  But that was a selection of the photos I took today.  I should back through others – I know I have photos of a blue heron from the last few days.  The colours today were lovely, but it was rather warm & when I got to Beaufort street, there was no room at the cafes, which was a little annoying.  On the other hand, I did keep walking (after a little shopping) which meant it was a reasonably long, unbroken walk – until –


tonight’s sunset.  I missed most of the colours.  But it was stunning walking up the slight hills, watching it spill over the crest which William Street runs along.  And look who was waiting for me when I got home: