Tuesday 29 September 2020


Dromana is a suburb south of Melbourne, and is located on the Mornington Peninsula. Its local government area is the Shire of Mornington Peninsula. It is a bayside centre, nestled between Safety Beach and McCrae, and situated at the foot of the towering peak of Arthurs Seat. Dromana's commercial centre is concentrated along the coastal boulevard of Point Nepean Road, with Arthurs Seat and its surrounding bushland providing a scenic backdrop to the shops and cafes along this route.

Dromana's foreshore reserve lines the coast and consists of grassy picnic areas, shelters, walking tracks and designated camping areas. The calm, sandy beaches provide safe swimming and boating opportunities. Points of interest along the coast include the Dromana Pier and the rocky cutting at Anthony's Nose where a boat ramp is situated.

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 28 September 2020

Sunday 27 September 2020


Dights Falls on the Yarra River in inner Melbourne. A little piece of nature about 4 km from the City centre!

This post is part of the My Sunday Best meme.

Saturday 26 September 2020


 It's Spring and the birds are all out and about in the Darebin Parklands.

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme.

Chestnut teal duck

Chestnut teal duck


Grass parrot

Rainbow lorikeet

White dove

Thursday 24 September 2020


Syringa vulgaris (lilac or common lilac) is a species of flowering plant in the olive family Oleaceae, native to the Balkan Peninsula, where it grows on rocky hills. This species is widely cultivated as an ornamental and has been naturalised in other parts of Europe (including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Italy), as well as much of North America. It is not regarded as an aggressive species, found in the wild in widely scattered sites, usually in the vicinity of past or present human habitations.

Most garden plants of S. vulgaris are cultivars, the majority of which do not exceed 4–5 m tall. Between 1876 and 1927, the nurseryman Victor Lemoine of Nancy introduced over 153 named cultivars, many of which are considered classics and still in commerce today. Lemoine's "French lilacs" extended the limited colour range to include deeper, more saturated hues, and they also introduced double-flowered "sports", with the stamens replaced by extra petals. Illustrated here is the hybrid 'Agincourt Beauty' that grows in our garden.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 23 September 2020

Tuesday 22 September 2020


Queen's Park is a significant Municipal Park in Moonee Ponds in the City of Melbourne, Australia. It is located in central Moonee Ponds bound by the following roads; Mount Alexander Road, The Strand, Pascoe Vale Road, Kellaway Avenue. Early travellers heading for the goldfields met here because fresh water was available in the lagoon. Burke and Wills camped here on their fateful journey to cross Australia.

A picturesque cottage is the focal point of the park with its idyllic surrounds and lovely public art pieces, such as mosaics, statues and monuments. A gravel path surrounds the lake where seats and picnic tables are provided beneath old established exotic trees, with the lake a haven for a variety of birds, making for a magical milieu. A rose garden and a sunken garden are part of the many attractions of the park. Music concerts and other entertainments are common on weekends.

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 21 September 2020


Yes, we are still in Lockdown and living through Stage 4 restrictions, which commenced at the beginning of August and have been going non-stop until now. Admittedly we have seen a dramatic decrease in cases and deaths, however, the cost has been great. Still, economies bounce back, people are more resilient than they think, and there is more to life than shopping and having fun.

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday 20 September 2020


As the Spring Equinox approaches, the parks and gardens put on their finery and all is verdant and lush. Here at the Parklands, the elms have flowered and are setting seed already.

This post is part of the My Sunday Best meme.

Saturday 19 September 2020


 A fellow photographer (with far better equipment than mine!) taking some telephoto shots of corellas in the Parklands.

The long-billed corella (Cacatua tenuirostris), or slender-billed corella is a cockatoo native to Australia, which is similar in appearance to the little corella and sulphur-crested cockatoo. This species is mostly white, with a reddish-pink face and forehead, and has a long pale beak, which is used to dig for roots and seeds. It has reddish-pink feathers on the breast and belly.

The adult long-billed corella measures from 38 to 41 cm in length, has a wingspan of about 80–90 cm and averages 567 g in weigh] It has a long bone-coloured beak, and a rim of featherless bluish skin around the eyes. The plumage is predominantly white with reddish feathers around the eyes and lores. The underside of the wings and tail feathers are tinged with yellow.

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme.

Thursday 17 September 2020


Solanum is the type genus of the family Solanaceae, which contains such well-known economic plants as the potato, tomato, tobacco, egg plant (aubergine) and many more. In Australia there are 117 species, of which 87 are endemic.  Solanum laciniatum or Kangaroo Apple, a common name shared with the closely related S. aviculare, occurs in temperate regions of New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, New Zealand and associated islands on a range of soil types.

It forms a large shrub 4 m high by 5 m wide. Solanum laciniatum produces two types of foliage: Large lance-shaped or irregularly lobed juvenile leaves 300 mm long by 250 mm wide and smaller generally entire lance-shaped adult leaves 150 mm long by about 30-50 mm wide. Both types of leaf are a rich dark green on the upper surface, and a lighter green underneath, with conspicuous veins. They are held on dark green succulent stems, which turn black, then a rough light-brown, with age.

The five-petalled flowers are 30-50 mm across, bluish-purple, with bright yellow anthers. The flowers appear spasmodically in spring and summer in clusters of 3-5 in the leaf axils. The egg-shaped berries, 20-30 mm long, begin green and small when unripe and then become a bright orange-yellow with a warty appearance when ripe. The berries are poisonous while green, but edible once orange (then called the 'bush tomato'). The plant is also used as a rootstock for grafting eggplant.

Solanum laciniatum has been cultivated at the Australian National Botanic Gardens since 1969, with no frost damage or major pest or disease problems apparent. As a fast-growing species, hardy in most soil types and conditions, except salt spray, S. laciniatum is ideally suited as a screen plant, in the understorey of a wind break, or for bank and erosion stabilisation. It has also been used in soils with a high concentration of heavy metals when reclaiming mine wastes.

For the home gardener S. laciniatum is ideal as a quick growing screen plant, while slower shrubs are establishing. Since the mid 1960s S. laciniatum and S. aviculare have been cultivated and studied in the USSR, NZ, India, Egypt and other countries. The plants, and in particular the young foliage and green berries, contain a series of steroids (including the toxic alkaloid solasodine), which are of commercial value as raw material for the manufacture of contraceptives.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 16 September 2020


Darebin Creek is a creek that runs through the northern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. It is the main watercourse of the Darebin Valley and a major tributary of the Yarra River. For tens of thousands of years it was used as a food and tool source sustainably by the Wurundjeri people, Indigenous Australians of the Kulin nation alliance, who spoke variations of the Woiwurrung language group.

The creek rises on the northern urban fringe of Melbourne north of the suburb of Epping, following a general southerly route and meeting the Yarra River at Alphington. The creek forms much of the municipal boundary between the City of Darebin and City of Banyule. Formerly an intermittent stream, increased stormwater runoff with urbanisation of the Darebin Creek catchment has resulted in permanent water flow.

The creek runs through Darebin Parklands, a large nature reserve one or two kilometres northwest of the junction at which the creek meets the Yarra. The Darebin Creek Trail runs along the banks in the lower reaches of the creek. This is the creek at the Darebin Parklands in Alphington.

This post is part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the My Corner of the World meme,
and also part of the Nature Notes meme.

Tuesday 15 September 2020


A very special painted fence in the Melbourne suburb of Thornbury. The mansion in the background is a grand old Victorian home that dominates the hill.

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

Monday 14 September 2020


Our garden is showing a full complement of wonderful Spring flowers and the fragrance is wonderful. In these days of restrictions, curfews and lockdowns, how grateful we are that we can open the back door and go out to enjoy our little corner of paradise!

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Blue Monday meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday 13 September 2020


Spring has sprung by the Merri Creek. We've had some good Spring showers these past couple of days and there is quite a bit of water in the Creek. However, today the weather was beautiful and a good walk along the creek was just the remedy for the Lockdown Blues.

This post is part of the My Sunday Best meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme.

Saturday 12 September 2020


In Australia we drive on the left side of the road (as in the UK), and hence our cars have the steering wheel on the right side. We also let our dogs drive our cars... Well, not really, but they try!

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme.

Thursday 10 September 2020


Erysimum (wallflower) is a genus of flowering plants in the botanical family Brassicaceae, that includes about 180 species, both popular garden plants and many wild forms. The genus Cheiranthus is sometimes included here in whole or in part. Erysimum has recently been ascribed to a monogeneric cruciferous tribe, Erysimeae. This tribe is characterized by sessile, stellate and/or malpighiaceous  trichomes, yellow to orange flowers and multiseeded siliques.

Most wallflower garden cultivars (e.g. Erysimum 'Chelsea Jacket') are derived from E. cheiri (often placed in Cheiranthus), from southern Europe. They are often attacked by fungal and bacterial disease, so they are best grown as biennials and discarded after flowering. They are also susceptible to clubroot, a disease of Brassicaceae.

Growth is best in dry soils with very good drainage, and they are often grown successfully in loose wall mortar, hence the vernacular name. There is a wide range of flower colour in the warm spectrum, including white, yellow, orange, red, pink, maroon, purple and brown. The flowers, appearing in spring, usually have a strong fragrance. Wallflowers are often associated in spring bedding schemes with tulips and forget-me-nots. The cultivar 'Bowles's Mauve' has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 9 September 2020


At the Darebin Parklands, one of the many trails criss-crossing the nature reserve. The cyclists always find it difficult going up the hilly terrain, but it's good exercise! It's tough climbing to the top, one needs to take it a step at time...

This post is part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the My Corner of the World meme,
and also part of the Nature Notes meme.

Tuesday 8 September 2020


The strict lockdown in Melbourne has been extended by two weeks, with officials saying new COVID-19 cases had not dropped enough to warrant decreasing restrictions. Victoria State Premier Daniel Andrews said the restrictions would be in place until 28 September, with a slight relaxation.

A gradual easing of the measures will be implemented from October. Our state has been the epicentre of the country's second wave of COVID-19, accounting for 90% of Australia's 753 deaths. Australia has recorded a total of 26,000 cases in a population of 25 million. The greater Melbourne area entered a second lockdown on 9 July after a rise in cases.

A 5km (3 mile) travel limit and night time curfew was imposed while shops and businesses were closed (with the exception of stores selling food and other essentials, pharmacies and doctors' surgeries). The current stage four lockdown was originally set to end on 13 September.

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

Saturday 5 September 2020


Walking the dogs on a wintry morning despite the cold and in any case, the fog is lifting as the sun peers out of the clouds...

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme,
and also part of the Camera Critters meme.

Friday 4 September 2020


Federation Bells is an installation comprising 39 upturned bells. Located in Birrarung Marr, Melbourne, they were created for celebrations of the centenary of Australia's federation in 2001. They were designed by Anton Hasell and Neil McLachlan in collaboration with Swaney Draper Architects.

To achieve the acoustical tuning of the bells, Behzad Keramati Nigjeh, an aerospace engineer also cooperated in this project. The bells' vibration modes were modelled and optimised using a sophisticated Finite Element software developed by Dr Joe Tomas. Federation Bells.com.au allows the public to compose music for Melbourne's Federation Bells.

Using an intuitive drag 'n' drop timeline, would-be composers can create original compositions for the bells and submit them for playing to the curator. During special events the bells are also hooked up to a MIDI keyboard the allow passersby to play the bells in real time .

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme.

Thursday 3 September 2020


Common chicory, Cichorium intybus, is a somewhat woody, perennial herbaceous plant of the dandelion family usually with bright blue flowers, rarely white or pink. Many varieties are cultivated for salad leaves, chicons (blanched buds), or for roots (var. sativum), which are baked, ground, and used as a coffee substitute and additive. It is also grown as a forage crop for livestock.

It lives as a wild plant on roadsides in its native Europe, and now common in North America, China, and Australia where it has become widely naturalised. "Chicory" is also the common name in the United States for curly endive (Cichorium endivia); these two closely related species are often confused.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.

Wednesday 2 September 2020


Plantago lanceolata is a species of flowering plant in the plantain family Plantaginaceae. It is known by the common names ribwort plantain, narrowleaf plantain, English plantain, ribleaf, lamb's tongue, and buckhorn. It is a common weed on cultivated or disturbed land. Tender young leaves of this weed are edible.

This post is part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the My Corner of the World meme,
and also part of the Nature Notes meme.

Tuesday 1 September 2020


The Yarra Trail is a shared use path for cyclists and pedestrians, which follows the Yarra River through the north eastern suburbs of Melbourne. The trail follows the river from near its mouth, through the city and suburbs to Westerfolds Park and Eltham. The Capital City Trail uses the same path up to Dights Falls, where it continues up the Merri Creek Trail as part of its loop around the city.

Bicycle Victoria has an ongoing campaign to have the path in Yarra Bend Park improved and the stairs at the east end of Gipps Street effectively removed from the trail by continuing the path on the west side of the river. Other alternatives include installing a ramp or installing a new footbridge near the Abbotsford Convent. An interactive map of the trail as well as others in the Melbourne area is available here.

These views are taken on the Yarra Trail along the Merri Creek (Photo 1) near Clifton Hill. The views of the City along the length of the trail are spectacular. We ar elucky in Melbourne to have such wonderful parks, rivers, creeks and trails throughout the metropolitan area.

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