Friday, 24 April 2015


One of the pleasures of living in Melbourne is walking by the Yarra River early in the morning and watching the su rise over the quietly flowing waters...

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Weekly TopShot meme.

Thursday, 23 April 2015


Duranta erecta is a species of flowering shrub in the verbena family Verbenaceae, native from Mexico to South America and the Caribbean. It is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in tropical and subtropical gardens throughout the world, and has become naturalised in many places. It is considered an invasive species in Australia, China, South Africa and on several Pacific Islands. Common names include golden dewdrop, pigeon berry, and skyflower. In Mexico, the native Nahuatl name for the plant is xcambocoché. In Tonga it is known as mavaetangi (tears of departure).

Duranta erecta is a sprawling shrub or (infrequently) a small tree. It can grow to 6 m tall and can spread to an equal width. Mature specimens possess axillary thorns, which are often absent on younger specimens. The leaves are light green, elliptic to ovate, opposite, and grow up to 7.5 cm long and 3.5 cm broad, with a 1.5 cm petiole. The flowers are light-blue or lavender, produced in tight clusters located on terminal and axillary stems, blooming almost all year long. The fruit is a small globose yellow or orange berry, up to 11 mm in diameter and containing several seeds. The leaves and berries of the plant are toxic, and are confirmed to have killed children, dogs and cats. However, songbirds eat the fruit without ill effects.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015


Darebin Creek in the Darebin Parklands after rain. It's always nice to see the creek swelling after we've had a wet day or two, but our thoughts are with the people of Sydney, who are dealing with fatal storms and floods... See here.

This post is part of the Wednesday Waters meme,
and also part of the Waterworld Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015


This is our local train station at Fairfield. Fairfield railway station is located on the Hurstbridge line in Victoria, Australia, and serves the north-eastern Melbourne suburb of Fairfield. The station was called "Fairfield Park" when it opened on 8 May 1888, and was renamed "Fairfield" on 14 November 1943.

From 1891 to 1893, Fairfield was the junction station for the northern end of the former Outer Circle railway line, and was later the junction of the APM Siding, which operated from 1919 to the 1990s, and served the Australian Paper Manufacturers paper mill. Boom barriers replaced interlocked gates at the Station Street level crossing in 1969. Fairfield Industrial Dog Object (FIDO), a 6-metre-tall wooden sculpture of a dog, is located adjacent to the level crossing, at the eastern end of Platform 2.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 20 April 2015


View from Southbank towards the South, by night.

This post is part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme.

Sunday, 19 April 2015


Although Fairfield is a predominantly residential inner city suburb, it does have a small north-eastern pocket, which remains a light industrial area. This is a vestige of the suburb's initial blue-collar roots, now having become thoroughly gentrified on the main. This photo is from this light industrial area, after hours, hence the deserted look.

This post is part of the Weekly Top Shot meme,
and also part of the Shadow Shot Sunday meme.

Saturday, 18 April 2015


A pond at the Darebin Parklands is a welcome refuge for ducks and moor hens in the midst of suburbia.

This post is part of the Friday Greens meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme,
and also part of the Weekly TopShot meme.

Friday, 17 April 2015


One of the most serene sights in the City: Sunrise over the Yarra River from Queen's Bridge, looking towards the East and the Sandridge Bridge.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme.

Thursday, 16 April 2015


Bottlebrushes are members of the genus Callistemon and belong to the family Myrtaceae. They are closely related to paperbark melaleucas, which also have 'bottlebrush' shaped flower spikes. It is difficult to tell to which genus some species belong. Botanists are currently closely studying these plants to determine how they are best classified.

There are 40 species currently called Callistemon. Most of these occur in the east and south-east of Australia. Two species occur in the south-west of Western Australia and four species in New Caledonia. Bottlebrushes can be found growing from Australia's tropical north to the temperate south. They often grow in damp or wet conditions such as along creek beds or in areas which are prone to floods.

The flower spikes of bottlebrushes form in spring and summer and are made up of a number of individual flowers. The pollen of the flower forms on the tip of a long coloured stalk called a filament. It is these filaments which give the flower spike its colour and distinctive 'bottlebrush' shape. The filaments are usually yellow or red, sometimes the pollen also adds a bright yellow flush to the flower spikes. Each flower produces a small woody fruit containing hundreds of tiny seeds. These fruits form in clusters along the stem, and are usually held on the plant for many years. The seeds are usually not released from the fruits for several years, but in some species the fruits open after about a year. Fire also stimulates the opening of the fruits in some bottlebrushes. The new leaves of many bottlebrushes are very ornamental. The leaves are often coloured and, in some species, they are covered with fine, soft hairs.

Bottlebrushes make excellent garden plants. Plants are all woody shrubs which range from 0.5 m to 4 m tall. The flowers can be spectacular and are irresistible to nectar-feeding birds and insects. Most species are frost tolerant. The popularity of bottlebrushes as garden plants commenced soon after European settlement and Crimson Bottlebrush (Callistemon citrinus) was introduced to Britain by Joseph Banks in 1789. Many species can tolerate (or thrive in) damp conditions, yet most are very hardy and will tolerate drought and limited maintenance. They grow well in a wide variety of soils, except those which are highly alkaline. Plants grown in full sun produce the best flowers.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015


Mornington is a seaside town on the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia, located 57 km south-east of Melbourne's central business district. It is in the local government area of the Shire of Mornington Peninsula. Mornington is known for its "village" atmosphere and its beautiful beaches. Mornington is a popular tourist destination with Melburnians who often make day trips to visit the area's bay beaches and wineries. The town centre runs into the foreshore area and local beach.

We spent a rather fine Sunday there last week, when the weather was beautifully autumnal - sunny, and mild enough to enjoy the pleasures of the beach.

This post is part of the Wednesday Waters,
and also part of the Waterworld Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.