Friday, August 31, 2012

Blue Moon

How not to photograph a beautiful full moon:
The yellow blob is the full moon. Green blobs are street lights. Guess you had to be there...

Thursday, August 30, 2012

In The Garden

It seems quite a while since I spent extended time in the garden.
Today I did a few hours of weeding, trimming and tidying. When it started raining I spent some time in my sewing room, another place I haven't spent enough time recently! The photo is one of my fringe flowers (Loropetalum chinense) after the rain.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Elephants In The Sun

Look! Some real sunshine, and without the cold wind we have had lately. On my way into town I snapped this pretty elephant:
From a distance I thought the design was something like a lotus flower, but closer inspection showed not a flower, but birds. Critically-endangered orange-bellied parrots, to be more precise; "A Pattern of Orange-bellied Parrots" by Vanessa Bong.

Close by, Brian Cheung's "Ming Vase Elephant" was also doing a bit of sun-bathing:

No sunshine for the next elephant, though. She is inside Melbourne Central. The Google map I have loaded onto my phone said she was located in "Butterfly Enclosure in Shot Tower Square".  Butterfly enclosure? Is there one? I still don't know, but I found her in the food court on the second level:
"Prayer for Protection" by Blaze Warrender.

My last elephant for the day was found much later, when the sun had gone.  Is this the cutest pile of scrap metal you've seen?
I love the tap on her trunk. And her spark-plug toes.  "Rusty Mali" by Russ Brebner made me smile!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Winter Sun

A touch of sunshine illuminating some Ipheion stars (Ipheion uniflorum).

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Tree Planting Day 2012

It's time to plant out the TreeProject seedlings; but first a look at how last year's have grown:
Not bad at all! In another year they could be taller than me. The best part of growing the trees for the same landowner is catching up with the trees you grew and planted.

Now for this year's trees. Here's the first one I planted:
It is a manna gum (Eucalyptus viminalis) which has gown a bit since March. And here's the scene after five people had worked for a couple of hours: 
200 trees planted. I think that makes it time for lunch!

After lunch, we were taken for a little sight-seeing trip, first to Metcalfe Cascades on the Coliban River:
and then Turpins Falls on the Campaspe River:
Until today I didn't know either of these places existed! If you want to see them in action, here's a YouTube video showing both of them with a bit more water than they have today:

Saturday, August 25, 2012


This lovely daffodil has just opened, and there are a few more on the way.
This what I planted in the mystery pot for a friend in March. I'll have to ask her if hers are open yet.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Elephant Safari

I was meeting some friends in the city, so took the opportunity to go looking for some more elephants on the way.

Who could resist "Wooly Mali" by Mini Goss?
She's the cuddliest elephant of all!

The city seemed full of school groups, and the children were really enjoying the elephants.
"Jimbo" by Janie Fearon above, and "Bromley One" by David Bromley below, in Federation Square.

Beside St Paul's Cathedral artist Graeme Base's "Night and Day" leopard-spotted Mali, accompanying the commercially-produced "Mali Turns the City Pink":

Roped off for some reason in the city square, is "City in Mali" by Ralf Kempken:

Outside the Town Hall, two more:
"Endangered Asia" by Kelly Just, above, and "Mali, Protector of all Animals" by Deborah Halpern, below.
I love that someone has garlanded her! I think she is the most beautiful of the elephants I've seen so far.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Busy Busy Busy!

I'm nearly as busy as these bees!
Lots of coming and going today, with full pollen bags. Yes, there are weeds beside the hive, but it's not an easy place to get to. Later in the day an extra storey was added to the bees' home. Here's hoping that with lots of space to grow they won't feel the need to swarm the way they did last year.

In the city this afternoon, I bumped into a few more elephants. I loved this one's elephant slippers!
Mali's Winter Wonderland by Pat Minahan.

I was heading to my lecture and barely had time to snap a quick shot of this one on my way past:
Enceladus by Ghostpatrol. I'll have to go back and read its plaque to understand that, but there was no time today.

After the lecture I snapped Baroque Baby by Robert Hague on my way to the tram:
So I've survived 4 lectures. (Seven to go...)

I was happy to find the latest Ottobre Design magazine had arrived when I got home. I think it has a lot more potential than the Burda I bought a week or two back. Not that can see much sewing happening in the near future.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


The stunning flower of Magnolia "Vulcan":
Attracting lots of attention today at what is apparently Australia's best large garden centre. Amazing to see such a huge flower on a relatively small plant. Unfortunately it had no discernible perfume.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Four Elephants

Four more elephants spotted today:
Clockwise from top left:
Forest Rides on the Elephant's Back by Pamela Conder
Mali is Listening to the Earth by Victor Holder

Elephas Maximus by Sharon Muir
Eltham Copper Butterfly Story by Karen Rawady

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Patchwork Elephant

This is the first of the "Mali in the City" elephants I've seen since they were installed last week:
She is "Patch" by Amy Robinson, and she is at Victoria Market. An appropriate one to see first!
I wish they had an Android app for the location of the 50 Malis, not just an iPhone one. I think I'll probably try and visit them all, anyway.

Sunday, August 12, 2012


Poisonouslessness is a very good characteristic in a food storage container!

It's also interesting that although their English is "not quite right", the writer does seem to know the difference between "it's" and "its".

Friday, August 10, 2012

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Au Revoir, Trees

Last look at the TreeProject seedlings in my back yard:
Then loaded into the car:
Those tiny ones at the front are the transplants. Some of them are starting to grow, but they are a long way behind those which haven't been disturbed. Perhaps sowing more seed would be a better idea than transplanting when you get failure to germinate?

Here they are after being dropped off in the next suburb. The landholder they were grown for is collecting several people's trees from this house on Saturday. It was interesting to compare mine with another grower's:
Mine are the ones on the right.

In a couple of weeks we will have a planting day, and it will be a chance to check up on some of last year's trees as well.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


Every morning since 24th June, my breakfast glass of juice has come from blood oranges which were on the tree 10 minutes earlier:
The taste is fantastic! It's a great start to the day. Sadly there are only enough oranges left on the tree for one more day of home-grown juice.

 The end of the day was not so great. While eating dinner I broke another piece off a tooth that I original broke in April. When I broke the first piece off, my dentist was closed for Easter and I had to wait a few days to get it seen to. This time there is a note on his door saying he is closed from today until the 4th September. Great timing!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Name That Food!

An Italian neighbour we had given some honey to brought around a chunk of dark-coloured, sweet, bread or cake made with our honey. I forgot to photograph it until there was only one piece left:
Apparently it is a very special dish usually only baked at Christmas time. The crust is so dark it looks burnt. The internal texture is like bread, but it is sweet like cake. Do you know what it is?

Saturday, August 4, 2012

A Taste Of Spring

The sun shone, the air was mild, and the white jonquils and I thought spring had arrived:
But tomorrow's forecast includes rain, squalls and hail, so it seems we are wrong.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Judging By The Cover

If you can't judge a book by its cover, can you a magazine?
The newsagent has started sealing certain magazines in plastic. Doesn't the customer need to see what the patterns are? To see which patterns are in which sizes?

I usually buy the May issue of Burda, because it most often has stuff in it that I want to make. But I would like the opportunity to at least flick through before handing over $16. I suppose it is handy that the magazine takes three months to get to Australia, because by then the internet can tell me which patterns have been popular with northern hemisphere sewers. But once I got this one home and removed the plastic, I wasn't so sure it had many things in my size that I want to make.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Tonight I entered what appears to be a not-terribly-interesting building from the street, and discovered this:
The domed ceiling of the 1891 banking chamber of what was the Commonwealth Bank of Australia building at 333 Collins St. The dome has been preserved within the modern building. That light through the skylights is not natural; there's a massive building above the dome now.

I don't know how I have never seen this before.