Thursday, 8 December 2016

MELBOURNE STREET TREES 176 - TAMARISK

The genus Tamarix (tamarisk, salt cedar) is composed of about 50–60 species of flowering plants in the family Tamaricaceae, native to drier areas of Eurasia and Africa. The generic name originated in Latin and may have referred to the Tamaris River in Hispania Tarraconensis (Spain).

They are evergreen or deciduous shrubs or trees growing to 1–18 m in height and forming dense thickets. The largest, Tamarix aphylla, is an evergreen tree that can grow to 18 m tall. They usually grow on saline soils, tolerating up to 15,000 ppm soluble salt and can also tolerate alkaline conditions. Tamarisks are characterised by slender branches and grey-green foliage. The bark of young branches is smooth and reddish brown. As the plants age, the bark becomes bluish-purple, ridged and furrowed. The leaves are scale-like, 1–2 mm long, and overlap each other along the stem. They are often encrusted with salt secretions. The pink to white flowers appear in dense masses on 5–10 cm long spikes at branch tips from March to September, though some species (e.g. T. aphylla) tend to flower during the winter.

Illustrated here is a hybrid of the species Tamarix chinensis.  Tamarix chinensis is a species of tamarisk known by the common names five-stamen tamarisk and Chinese tamarisk or saltcedar. It is native to China and Korea, and it is known in many other parts of the world as an introduced species and sometimes an invasive noxious weed. It easily inhabits moist habitat with saline soils. It may grow as a tree with a single trunk or as a shrub with several spreading erect branches reaching 6 metres or more in maximum height. It has been known to reach 12 metres.

It has reddish, brown, or black bark. The small, multibranched twigs are covered in small lance-shaped, scale-like leaves which are no more than about 3 mm long. The inflorescence is a dense raceme of flowers a few cm long. Each fragrant flower has five petals which are usually pink but range from white to red. This tamarisk can hybridise with Tamarix parvifloraT. ramosissima may be treated in synonymy or as a separate species.

It has become an aggressive invader of wildlands in the southwestern United States, where it was once planted as an ornamental plant. It reproduces vegetatively from its roots and also from its foliage if it happens to be covered by soil, as in sediment-rich flooding. It also reproduces by its seed, which are tiny and tufted with hairs, easily dispersing on the wind. Despite its reputation as a noxious weed, the tree can be useful for wood, in honey production, and as a nesting site for various birds. In its native habitat in China the plant forms thickets that act as useful barriers on the margins of waterways, including saline ocean shores.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.







Wednesday, 7 December 2016

PARKLANDS VISTA

The Darebin Parklands straddle Alphington and Ivanhoe, approximately 10 kilometres northeast of the City of Melbourne, and they are a district park covering an area of 33 hectares. Darebin Creek flows through the Parklands, to join the Yarra River, at Alphington. The Darebin Parklands are highly regarded for its social, recreation, education, conservation, water quality management, cultural and heritage values. Always a wonderful place to walk in and enjoy the wealth of natural vistas.

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



Tuesday, 6 December 2016

MELBOURNE BY NIGHT

Melbourne City by night can be a magical place...

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

Monday, 5 December 2016

NEW DRESS

With less than three weeks till Christmas, we were surprised yesterday when we visited the Eltham Shopping Mall and saw how few people were around and about shopping. I suppose from next week onwards it will start to get really hectic.

This post is part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday, 4 December 2016

MORNINGTON SEA VIEWS

Mornington is a sea side town on the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, 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 Post Office opened on 21 May 1856 as Schnapper Point and was renamed Mornington in 1864. The town centre runs into the foreshore area and local beach, which features a yacht club, restaurant and park with playground facilities. Mornington is an attractive destination for shopping and features some excellent restaurants and cafes. The north of Mornington is also home to several horse breeders and stables.

This post is part of the Scenic Weekends meme,
and also part of the Our Beautiful World meme,
and also part of the My Sunday Photo meme.






Saturday, 3 December 2016

MELBOURNE SUNRISE

One of the advantages of being a 'morning person' is enjoying the sunrise, the quiet streets and commuting in uncrowded public transport. Here is a sunrise I enjoyed recently in my home suburb of Fairfield, an inner northeastern suburb of Melbourne.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Saturday Silhouettes meme,
and also part of the Orange you Glad It's Friday meme.



Friday, 2 December 2016

HIGH ST, NORTHCOTE

This is High Street, the main thoroughfare and old shopping strip in Northcote, an inner suburb of Melbourne. The street has been decorated for Christmas and the dapper reindeer on a green background are rather cool...

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



Thursday, 1 December 2016

MELBOURNE STREET TREES 175 - TREE EVERLASTING

Ozothamnus ferrugineus also called Tree Everlasting is an erect shrub or small tree to 2.5–5 m high. Its branchlets are densely cottony, not viscid. Leaves spreading, oblong or narrow-lanceolate to -oblanceolate, 15–65 mm long, 1–5(–10) mm wide, c. glabrous and resinous above, densely grey-cottony beneath (midrib glabrescent), apex acute, margin slightly recurved; petioles 0.5–2.5 mm long.

The clusters of flowers are hemispherical to corymbose, 3–5(–7) cm diameter. Capitula 80–300, white, cylindric, 3–4 mm long, 1–2 mm wide; involucral bracts 14–18, innermost spathulate, with lamina elliptic, 1–1.5 mm long, reflexed, flat or margin incurved, white, margin entire; receptacle bracts and female florets absent; hermaphrodite florets (4–)5 or 6(–8). Cypsela narrow-ovoid, c. 1 mm long, sparsely papillose; pappus bristles 2–3 mm long, apex narrowly clavate.

Flowering time is November to February. The shrub grows best in moist to wet well drained soils and is widespread in open forest and woodland, and following disturbance. Frost tolerant. Full sun to semi-shade. For garden use, this long flowering plant is perfect for background planting. Prune to maintain bushy habit.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme,
and also part of the Friday Greens meme.






Wednesday, 30 November 2016

MELBOURNE BY NIGHT

Lighting up the Yarra River and delighting in the reflections of the City lights from Southbank.

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



Tuesday, 29 November 2016

VISIT MELBOURNE!

A trip to Melbourne is a very rewarding experience for tourists, travellers or jet-setters. There is plenty to discover in Melbourne's secret laneways and rooftops, the cultural hub of Federation Square, buzzing bars, boutiques and eateries, and the iconic MCG. It's great to experience St Kilda, the Royal Botanic Gardens, bohemian Brunswick Street and the nation-stopping excitement of the Spring Racing Carnival. Always fun to join world class events such as the Australian Grand Prix or relax on a day trip to the Mornington Peninsula or to Phillip Island for fairy penguins...

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