Tuesday, 30 June 2015

GREAT HALL, NGV

The Great Hall in the National Gallery of Victoria was opened on August 20, 1968. Its magnificent ceiling is the world's largest stained-glass ceiling, designed by Australian artist Leonard French. The ceiling is high (13.72 metres), vast (60.9 x 15.24 metres) and so heavy with glass and steel that its downward projecting triangles need to be held up by a series of slim steel columns. Each of the main intersecting triangles has been turned into thousands of geometric pieces of coloured and clear glass that have been cut so their facets bounce and refract coloured light. The 224 triangles of diamond-cut primary colours weigh 300 kilograms each.

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, 29 June 2015

FITZROY ALLEY ART

This little alley in Fitzroy lies parallel to Brunswick St and is directly off Princes St. One could quite easily miss it, however, unless one is walking. There is a huge variety of graffiti, nasty and ugly tagging, and occasionally some really nice art. I was quite impressed with the "Green Goddess". It seems to have been painted over another piece of art, which unfortunately I did not see. Such is the lot of street art, evanescent and ephemeral...

This post is part of the Monday Murals meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Friday Greens meme.





Sunday, 28 June 2015

ST ANDREWS CHURCH

St Andrews is a town in Victoria, Australia, 36 km north-east of Melbourne's Central Business District. Its local government area is the Shire of Nillumbik. At the 2011 Census, St Andrews had a population of 1,138. St Andrews is well known for its alternative market, which is open every Saturday from 8am to 2pm. It also contains a hotel, primary school, bakery, CFA, general store and a community centre, as well as the small church from which the town takes its name.

Originally called Queenstown, the area was surveyed in 1858 and a town proclaimed on 25 February 1861. St Andrew Post Office had opened earlier on 1 January 1856 and was renamed St Andrews in 1923. It experienced population growth during the Victorian gold rush, when prospectors mined the hills around the town. The first discovery of gold in Queenstown was recorded in The Herald on 9 and 11 March 1855 and was attributed to a George Boston and two Scotsmen.

On 7 February 2009 a major bushfire destroyed houses on Ninks, Muller, Jacksons and Wild Dog Creek Roads, as well as Buttermans Track and Olives Lane. Its progression toward the town centre was halted by a southerly wind change, which saved the rest of the town, but drove the fire front further east, destroying the towns of Kinglake and Marysville.

This post is part of the Spiritual Sundays meme,
and also part of the inSPIREd Sunday meme,
and also part of the Scenic Weekends meme.










Saturday, 27 June 2015

ON THE RIVER, WERRIBEE

The Werribee River is a perennial river of the Port Phillip catchment that is located on the plain West of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. The headwaters of a tributary, the Lerderderg River, are north of Ballan near Daylesford and it flows across the basalt plain, through the suburb of Werribee to enter Port Phillip.

A linear park follows the Werribee River along much of its course. In total the Werribee River completes a journey of approximately 110 kilometres. The river flows through the Werribee Gorge State Park before being utilised for irrigation of market gardens at Bacchus Marsh, then through Werribee where it is crossed by the Maltby By-pass. It then flows through the Werribee Open Range Zoo in Werribee Park, and finally the small coastal settlement of Werribee South before entering Port Phillip.

The Western Treatment Plant, a sewage treatment site, is located near the mouth of the river, and supplies irrigation needs to the zoo. The Werribee River Trail winds beside the Werribee River from Davis Creek in Tarneit to the Princes Highway in Werribee. These photos of the River are taken in Werribee, close to the Presidents Park.

This post is part of the Friday Greens meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme,
and also part of the Scenic Weekends meme.





Friday, 26 June 2015

SUNSET SILHOUETTE

Walking the dog as the sun is setting. Repeat many times in the wonderful parks and parklands of Melbourne...

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Saturday Silhouettes meme.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

MELBOURNE STREET TREES 118 - COOTAMUNDRA WATTLE

Acacia baileyana or Cootamundra wattle, is a shrub or tree in the genus Acacia, in the Fabaceae family. The scientific name of the species honours the botanist Frederick Manson Bailey. It is indigenous to a small area of southern New South Wales in Australia, but it has been widely planted in other Australian states and territories. In Melbourne, it is a very commonly encountered street tree.

In many areas of Victoria, this wattle has become naturalised and is regarded as a weed, out-competing indigenous Victorian species. Wattles have been extensively introduced into New Zealand. Almost all wattles have cream to golden flowers. The small, lightly fragrant, flowers are arranged in spherical to cylindrical inflorescences, with only the stamens prominent. These trees start to bloom in early Winter and different varieties of wattle will continue to flower until Spring.

A. baileyana is used in Europe in the cut flower industry, where it is called "mimosa". It is also used as food for bees in the production of honey. This plant is adaptable and easy to grow. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. Unfortunately it has an ability to naturalise (i.e. escape) into surrounding bushland. Also, it hybridises with some other wattles, notably the rare and endangered Sydney Basin species Acacia pubescens. The fine foliage of the original Cootamundra wattle is grey-green, but a blue-purple foliaged form, known as 'Purpurea' is very popular.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.






Wednesday, 24 June 2015

A WINTER'S MORNING

One of the pleasures of waking up early in the morning is being able to watch the sun rise, and if it is Winter, then watch it in relatively little company. The views of the City from Southbank, looking towards the East in the first photo; Queens Bridge in the second; and finally towards the West and the Casino in the last photo.

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, 23 June 2015

WINTRY ELMS

The cultivation of elms in Australia began in the first half of the 19th century when European settlers imported species from their former homelands. Owing to the demise of elms in the northern hemisphere as a result of the Dutch elm disease pandemic, the mature trees in Australia's parks and gardens are now regarded as amongst the most significant in the world.

Here, the magnificent elm avenues of Royal Parade, close to the University of Melbourne are seen. Melbourne Winter is mild and some of the trees manage to hold on to their yellow leaves well into the cooler weather.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Trees & Bushes meme.






Monday, 22 June 2015

QUINCE TIME

Quinces are in season in Melbourne at the moment and a fruiting tree is quite a pleasure to see! The quince (Cydonia oblonga) is the sole member of the genus Cydonia in the family Rosaceae (which also contains apples and pears, among other fruits). It is a small deciduous tree that bears a pome fruit, similar in appearance to a pear, and bright golden-yellow when mature.

Throughout history the cooked fruit has been used as food, but the tree is also grown for its attractive pale pink blossom and other ornamental qualities. The tree grows 5 to 8 metres high and 4 to 6 metres wide. The fruit is 7 to 12 centimetres long and 6 to 9 centimetres across. It is native to rocky slopes and woodland margins in South-west Asia, Turkey and Iran although it can be grown successfully at latitudes as far north as Scotland.

The immature fruit is green with dense grey-white pubescence, most of which rubs off before maturity in late autumn when the fruit changes colour to yellow with hard, strongly perfumed flesh. The leaves are alternately arranged, simple, 6–11 cm long, with an entire margin and densely pubescent with fine white hairs. The flowers, produced in spring after the leaves, are white or pink, 5 cm across, with five petals.

Quince jam, jelly, paste and stewed fruit are all quite delicious and easily made. Quinces are also used as an ingredient in savoury food. You can find several recipes here.


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