Thursday 28 February 2013


Jasminum grandiflorum, also known variously as the Spanish jasmine, Royal jasmine, Catalonian jasmine, among others is a species of jasmine native to South Asia. In India, its leaves are widely used as an Ayurvedic herbal medicine and its flowers are used to adorn the coiffure of women. In Pakistan, it grows wild in the Salt Range and Rawalpindi District at 500–1500 m altitude.

It is closely related to, and sometimes treated as merely a form of Jasminum officinale. It is a scrambling deciduous shrub growing to 2–4 m tall. The leaves are opposite, 5–12 cm long, pinnate with 5–11 leaflets. The flowers are produced in open cymes, the individual flowers are white having corolla with a basal tube 13–25 mm long and five lobes 13–22 mm long.

The fragrance of the flowers is unique and sweet. It is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in warm temperate and subtropical regions.By method of solvent extraction the Jasmine flowers are converted into Jasmine Concrete and Jasmine Oleoresin (sold as Jasmine Absolute). Both products have a huge demand in the fragrance industry. Methyl jasmonate isolated from the jasmine oil of Jasminum grandiflorum led to the discovery of the molecular structure of the jasmonate plant hormones.

The plant grows extensively in the Mediterranean region and it has also been introduced widely in other temperate zones, like Southern Australia, where it flourishes in suburban gardens. As the plant is difficult to have in the house as a cut flower, a traditional method of enjoying the flowers indoors is illustrated here. The burgeoning buds that are about to open that evening are collected and are strung on thread with a needle. In a couple of hours, the buds open and the delicious fragrance fills the room the garland is hung in. The flowers stay fresh for a couple of days without water.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 27 February 2013


The Fairfield Boathouse was established in 1908 by John St Clair as a picnic, camping and refreshment room area and boat shed area. John St Clair was a piano tuner from Smith Street Fitzroy, with a vision. In 1923 the boathouse was raised by 12 feet to help minimise flood damage, a frequent threat to boathouses along the Yarra.

Boat and canoe carnivals and open air carnivals were common sights at Fairfield until the 1950’s. Boating popularity declined until finally the Fairfield Boathouse was closed in 1980 as it was declared unfit for human habitation.

In 1985 the boathouse was restored and re-opened. Meticulous work and an eye for detail was required for rebuilding. Even the gardens have been restored to encourage native birds. Today you can paddle through Inner Melbourne's only remaining natural bushland by hiring a boat, canoe or kayak. Or, at the Fairfield Park Boathouse you can enjoy informal outdoor dining where you can relax by the river in summer or sit by the cozy wood fires and admire the view in winter.

This post is part of the Water World Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme.

Tuesday 26 February 2013


Melbourne General Post Office (also known as Melbourne GPO) is located on the corner of Elizabeth and Bourke Street in Melbourne CBD, Australia and is currently listed on the Victorian Heritage Register. The former purpose built post office building currently functions as a shopping mall, having been redeveloped by adaptive reuse in 2004.

The architectural style of the building is Classical with French Second Empire influences and was designed in the Victorian period by architect A.E Johnson. Its historical significance is also due to incorporating distinct sections built over a period of 48 years between 1859 and 1907, and multilayered architecture, as a result of the four floors being constructed at different times. A distinctive architectural element is the clock tower which dominates the intersection of the two streets. Its location is still used as a point of reference for the measure of distances from the centre of Melbourne.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme.

Monday 25 February 2013


St Patrick’s Cathedral in East Melbourne, is one of the world's most magnificent and awe-inspiring neo-gothic cathedrals. This bluestone/sandstone gothic revival cathedral was designed by William Wardell. It was built in stages from 1858 to 1940, when finally, the spires were added. St. Patrick’s is a living monument to the faith and generosity of Melbourne Catholics in the boom and bust years of the 19th century. It provides a place of worship, prayer and reflection in today’s busy world.

The photos were taken early in the morning as I was going to work. The overcast sky provided a perfect backdrop for the sunlit buildings as the sun was rising. The cathedral was almost like it was being gilded by the sun rays...

This post is part of the Nature Footsteps Inspiring Photography meme.

Sunday 24 February 2013


Built in 1989 the Southgate pedestrian bridge over the Yarra River in Melbourne provides the main pedestrian link for thousands of workers and tourists between Flinders Street Station and the Southgate business and entertainment precinct.

This post is part of the Nature Footsteps Waters meme,
and also part of the Sunday Bridges meme.

Saturday 23 February 2013


A quiet Summer morning on the Yarra River. The tranquil waters reflect the morning light and the tall buildings still haven't started to fill with the commuting workers...

This post is part of the Weekend Reflections meme.

Friday 22 February 2013


Walking along the Yarra River early in the morning is a refreshing and soul-cleansing experience, especially when one can enjoy such beautiful views of the sun rising over the River.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme.

Thursday 21 February 2013


Grevillea is a diverse genus of about 360 species of evergreen flowering plants in the protea family Proteaceae, native to rainforest and more open habitats in Australia, New Guinea, New Caledonia, Indonesia and Sulawesi. It was named in honour of Charles Francis Greville. The species range from prostrate shrubs less than 50 cm  tall to trees 35 m tall. Common names include grevillea, spider flower, silky oak and toothbrush plant. Closely related to the genus Hakea, the genus gives its name to the subfamily Grevilleoideae.

Grevillea 'Robyn Gordon' is a very popular grevillea cultivar which has been planted widely in Australia and other countries.It is a shrub that grows to 2 metres in height and up to 3 metres width and has attractive divided leaves The red inflorescences are about 15 cm long by 9 cm wide.

The cultivar, which is a cross between a red-flowered form of Grevillea banksii and G. bipinnatifida, was selected by David Gordon in Queensland for its prolific and sustained flowering. Trials, which began in 1963, demonstrated stability in its characteristics and it was released to the nursery trade in 1968. It was registered in 1973 under the name 'Robyn Gordon' in memory of a family member who died in 1969, aged 16.

Along with a number of other grevilleas, the cultivar may cause allergic contact dermatitis for certain individuals who come into contact with it.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 20 February 2013


The Yarra River is fantastic resource for the City of Melbourne. As well as providing a wonderful scenic attraction with numerous parks and reserves along its banks, it provides an opportunity for many water sports and as a means of transportation and pleasure cruising.

Rowing on the Yarra has a long tradition as Melbourne's historic rowing boathouses on the banks of the Yarra River in Alexandra Gardens testify. These are home to following Melbourne rowing clubs:

  • Banks Rowing Club [1865]
  • Mercantile Rowing Club [1880]
  • La Trobe University Rowing Club [1969]
  • Melbourne Rowing Club [1862]
  • Melbourne University Boat Club [1859]
  • Yarra Yarra Rowing Club [1871]
  • Richmond Rowing Club [1863]

These photos were taken early in the morning and most fo the rowers are University students doing their practice runs.

This post is part of the Water World Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme.

Tuesday 19 February 2013


Our hot Summer weather was succeeded today by a cool and thankfully wet day. This has proven to be a boon to firefighters who were trying to contain grass fires in Melbourne's outer northern suburbs. Here are some photos from earlier in the week when I found myself quite high in an unfamiliar building...

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme: