Thursday, 30 June 2016

BLUE SAGE

Salvia guaranitica (Anise-scented sage, Hummingbird sage, blue sage) in the Lamiaceae family is a species of Salvia native to a wide area of South America, including Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Argentina. It is a perennial subshrub growing 1.2 to 1.5 m tall, spreading into a large patch through its spreading roots. The leaves are ovate, 4 cm long and nearly as wide, with a fresh mint green colour, and an anise scent when crushed. The inflorescences are up to 25 cm long with flowers in various shades of blue, including an uncommonly true blue. In cold regions, flowering begins in mid summer and continues until frost.

Salvia guaranitica is a popular ornamental plant in mild areas. It grows in either full or three quarter sunlight, in well drained soil. Numerous cultivars have been selected, including 'Argentine Skies' (pale blue flowers), 'Black and Blue' (very dark violet blue calyx), 'Blue Ensign' (large blue flowers), and 'Purple Splendor' (Light purple flowers). The cultivar 'Blue Enigma', with pure blue flowers, has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.

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



Wednesday, 29 June 2016

YARROW

Achillea millefolium, commonly known as yarrow or common yarrow, is a flowering plant in the family Asteraceae. It is native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere in Asia, Europe, and North America. It has been introduced as a feed for live stock in places like New Zealand and Australia. However, it is a weed in those places and sometimes also in its native regions.

In New Mexico and southern Colorado, it is called plumajillo (Spanish for 'little feather') from its leaf shape and texture. In antiquity, yarrow was known as herba militaris, for its use in stanching the flow of blood from wounds. Other common names for this species include gordaldo, nosebleed plant, old man's pepper, devil's nettle, sanguinary, milfoil, soldier's woundwort, thousand-leaf, and thousand-seal.


This post is part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,

and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

ZAPPEION, ATHENS

The Zappeion (Greek: Ζάππειον Μέγαρο, Záppeion Mégaro) is a building in the National Gardens of Athens in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is generally used for meetings, conferences and ceremonies, both official and private.

In 1869, the Greek Parliament allocated 80,000 square metres of public land between the Palace Gardens and the ancient Temple of Olympian Zeus, and also passed a law on 30 November 1869, "for the building works of the Olympic Games", as the Zappeion was the first building to be erected specifically for the revival of the Olympic Games in the modern world.

The ancient Panathenian stadium was also refurbished as part of the works for the Olympic Games. Following some delay, on 20 January 1874, the cornerstone of the building was laid; this new building would be designed by Danish architect Theophil Hansen. Finally, on 20 October 1888, the Zappeion opened. Unfortunately for its benefactor, Evangelis Zappas, he did not live long enough to see the Zappeion built, and his cousin Konstantinos Zappas was nominated by Evangelos Zappas to complete the building. The Austrian Parliament Building was also designed by Hansen and followed the same theme in the exterior.

The Zappeion was used during the 1896 Summer Olympics as the main fencing hall. A decade later, at the 1906 Intercalated Games, it was used as the Olympic Village. It served as the first host for the organising committee (ATHOC) for the 2004 Games from 1998 to 1999 and served as the press centre during the 2004 games.

In 1938, the Athens Radio Station, the country's first national broadcaster, began operating in the premises. The building continued to house the National Radio Foundation until the inauguration of the House of Radio in 1970. A number of historical events have taken place at the Zappeion, including the signing of the documents formalising Greece's accession to the European Community in May, 1979, which took place in the building's marble-clad, peristyle main atrium. The head of Evangelos Zappas is buried underneath his statue which is located just outside the Zappeion.

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,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.











Saturday, 25 June 2016

SATURDAY SILHOUETTES #53

Welcome to the Saturday Silhouettes meme! This is a weekly meme that looks at SILHOUETTES in photography.

SILHOUETTE |ˌsɪlʊˈɛt| noun: The dark shape and outline of someone or something visible in restricted light against a brighter background.
ORIGIN - late 18th century: Named (although the reason remains uncertain) after Étienne de Silhouette (1709–67), French author and politician.
This post is also part of the Skywatch Friday meme>

Please add your contribution below, using the Linky tool.
As this is a small but select meme, please visit other contributors and add a comment - they like comments about their work as much as you do!

Friday, 24 June 2016

FICUS PUMILA

Ficus pumila (creeping fig or climbing fig) is a species of flowering plant in the Moraceae (mulberry) family, native to East Asia (China, Japan, Vietnam) and naturalised in parts of the southeastern and south-central United States. Ficus pumila is a woody evergreen vine, growing to 2.5–4 m. The juvenile foliage is much smaller and thinner than mature leaves produced as the plant ages. This plant requires the fig wasp Blastophaga pumilae for pollination, and is fed upon by larvae of the butterfly Marpesia petreus.

As the common name, "creeping fig" indicates, the plant has a creeping/vining habit and is often used in gardens and landscapes where it covers the ground and climbs up trees and walls. It is not frost-hardy, and in temperate regions is often seen as a houseplant. It is fast-growing and requires little in the way of care. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. It can become invasive and cover structures and landscape features if not maintained and its growth contained. When climbing buildings or wooden structures, the woody tendrils can cling or root in, and damage structures and/or their surface finishes.

This post is part of the Friday Greens meme.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

RUE IN FLOWER

Ruta graveolens, commonly known as rue, common rue or herb-of-grace, is a species of Ruta in the family Rutaceae, grown as an ornamental plant and as an herb. It is native to the Balkan Peninsula.

It is now grown throughout the world in gardens, especially for its bluish leaves, and sometimes for its tolerance of hot and dry soil conditions. It is also cultivated as a medicinal herb, as a condiment, and to a lesser extent as an insect repellent.

For more information, see here "All About Rue":
 http://nicholasjv.blogspot.com.au/2016/03/all-about-rue.html

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

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

XEROPHYTES IN GEELONG

Xerophyte |ˈzɪərə(ʊ)fʌɪt, ˈzɛrə(ʊ)fʌɪt| noun - Botany: Is a plant which needs very little water.
Etymology: Ancient Greek ξηρός (xeros, "dry") and φυτόν (phutón, “plant”).

Geelong is a port city located on Corio Bay and the Barwon River, in the state of Victoria, Australia, 75 kilometres south-west of the state capital, Melbourne. It is the second largest Victorian city, with an estimated urban population of 184,182 as at June 2014, having grown 1.4 percent since June 2013.

The Geelong Botanic Gardens were established in 1851 - over a century and a half ago land was put aside for what is now Eastern Park and the Geelong Botanic Gardens. What is now referred to as the Geelong Botanic Gardens is the detailed landscape and plant collection.

The surrounding Eastern Park is an arboretum, or tree collection. Both landscapes have different water requirements due to their plant collections. The Botanic Gardens conserves plants from around the world which often have higher water requirements. Plants grown in the newer 21st Century Garden and the Eastern Park Arboretum have lower water requirements similar to indigenous plants adapted to local dry climate conditions. Thus this collection is rich in xerophytes, which belong in the typical xeriscape of most of Australia, which is in fact the driest continent on earth.

xeriscape |ˈzɪərɪskeɪp, ˈzɛrɪskeɪp| chiefly US noun:
A garden or landscape created in a style that requires little or no irrigation or other maintenance, used in arid regions.
Etymology: Ancient Greek ξηρός (xeros, "dry") and Middle Dutch lantscap, from land ‘land’ + scap (equivalent of -ship).

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,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.







Tuesday, 21 June 2016

ADELAIDE, SOUTH AUSTRALIA

Adelaide is the capital city of South Australia and the fifth-largest city in Australia. As at June 2013, Adelaide had an estimated resident population of 1.29 million. The demonym "Adelaidean" is used in reference to the city and its residents. Adelaide is north of the Fleurieu Peninsula, on the Adelaide Plains between the Gulf St Vincent and the low-lying Mount Lofty Ranges which surround the city. Adelaide stretches 20 km from the coast to the foothills, and 90 km from Gawler at its northern extent to Sellicks Beach in the south.

Named in honour of Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen, queen consort to King William IV, the city was founded in 1836 as the planned capital for a freely settled British province in Australia. Colonel William Light, one of Adelaide's founding fathers, designed the city and chose its location close to the River Torrens, in the area originally inhabited by the Kaurna people. Light's design set out Adelaide in a grid layout, interspaced by wide boulevards and large public squares, and entirely surrounded by parklands. Early Adelaide was shaped by religious freedom and a commitment to political progressivism and civil liberties, which led to the moniker "City of Churches".

As South Australia's seat of government and commercial centre, Adelaide is the site of many governmental and financial institutions. Most of these are concentrated in the city centre along the cultural boulevard of North Terrace, King William Street and in various districts of the metropolitan area. Today, Adelaide is noted for its many festivals and sporting events, its food and wine, its long beachfronts, and its large defence and manufacturing sectors. It ranks highly in terms of liveability, being listed in the Top 10 of The Economist's World's Most Liveable Cities index in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

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,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.










Saturday, 18 June 2016

SATURDAY SILHOUETTES #52

Welcome to the Saturday Silhouettes meme! This is a weekly meme that looks at SILHOUETTES in photography.

SILHOUETTE |ˌsɪlʊˈɛt| noun: The dark shape and outline of someone or something visible in restricted light against a brighter background.
ORIGIN - late 18th century: Named (although the reason remains uncertain) after Étienne de Silhouette (1709–67), French author and politician.
This post is also part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme.

Please add your contribution below, using the Linky tool.
As this is a small but select meme, please visit other contributors and add a comment - they like comments about their work as much as you do!

Friday, 17 June 2016

OXALIS

A Winter bed of Oxalis pes-caprae (also called: Bermuda buttercup, African wood-sorrel, Bermuda sorrel, buttercup oxalis, Cape sorrel, English weed, goat's-foot, sourgrass, soursob and soursop!).

This post is part of the Friday Greens meme.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

LEMON

The lemon (Citrus × limon) is a species of small evergreen tree native to Asia. The tree's ellipsoidal yellow fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary purposes throughout the world, primarily for its juice, which has both culinary and cleaning uses. The pulp and rind (zest) are also used in cooking and baking. The juice of the lemon is about 5% to 6% citric acid, which gives a sour taste. The distinctive sour taste of lemon juice makes it a key ingredient in drinks and foods such as lemonade and lemon meringue pie.

The origin of the lemon is unknown, though lemons are thought to have first grown in Assam (a region in northeast India), northern Burma or China. A study of the genetic origin of the lemon reported it to be hybrid between bitter orange (sour orange) and citron. Lemons entered Europe near southern Italy no later than the first century AD, during the time of Ancient Rome. However, they were not widely cultivated. They were later introduced to Persia and then to Iraq and Egypt around 700 AD.

The lemon was first recorded in literature in a 10th-century Arabic treatise on farming, and was also used as an ornamental plant in early Islamic gardens. It was distributed widely throughout the Arab world and the Mediterranean region between 1000 and 1150. The first substantial cultivation of lemons in Europe began in Genoa in the middle of the 15th century. The lemon was later introduced to the Americas in 1493 when Christopher Columbus brought lemon seeds to Hispaniola on his voyages. Spanish conquest throughout the New World helped spread lemon seeds. It was mainly used as an ornamental plant and for medicine.

In the 19th century, lemons were increasingly planted in Florida and California. In 1747, James Lind's experiments on seamen suffering from scurvy involved adding lemon juice to their diets, though vitamin C was not yet known. The origin of the word "lemon" may be Middle Eastern. The word draws from the Old French limon, then Italian limone, from the Arabic laymūn or līmūn, and from the Persian līmūn, a generic term for citrus fruit, which is a cognate of Sanskrit (nimbū, “lime”).

The 'Eureka' lemon shown here grows year-round and abundantly. This is the common supermarket lemon, also known as 'Four Seasons' (Quatre Saisons) because of its ability to produce fruit and flowers together throughout the year. This variety is also available as a plant to domestic customers. There is also a pink-fleshed Eureka lemon, which's outer skin is variegated from green and yellow stripes.

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



Wednesday, 15 June 2016

WET

Abutilon is a large genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae. It is distributed throughout the tropics and subtropics of the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Australia. General common names include Indian mallow and velvetleaf. The genus name is an 18th-century New Latin word that came from the Arabic ’abū-ṭīlūn (أبو طيلون), the name given by Avicenna to this or a similar genus.

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,
and also part of the ABC Wednesday meme.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

SYRACUSE, SICILY

Syracuse (Italian: Siracusa; Sicilian: Sarausa/Seragusa; Latin: Syrācūsae; Ancient Greek: Συράκουσαι, Syrakousai) is a historic city in Sicily, the capital of the province of Syracuse. The city is notable for its rich Greek history, culture, amphitheatres, architecture, and as the birthplace of the preeminent mathematician and engineer Archimedes. This 2,700-year-old city played a key role in ancient times, when it was one of the major powers of the Mediterranean world. Syracuse is located in the southeast corner of the island of Sicily, right by the Gulf of Syracuse next to the Ionian Sea.

The city was founded by Ancient Greek Corinthians and Teneans and became a very powerful city-state. Syracuse was allied with Sparta and Corinth and exerted influence over the entirety of Magna Graecia, of which it was the most important city. Described by Cicero as "the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all", it equaled Athens in size during the fifth century BC. It later became part of the Roman Republic and Byzantine Empire. After this Palermo overtook it in importance, as the capital of the Kingdom of Sicily. Eventually the kingdom would be united with the Kingdom of Naples to form the Two Sicilies until the Italian unification of 1860.

In the modern day, the city is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site along with the Necropolis of Pantalica. In the central area, the city itself has a population of around 125,000 people. The inhabitants are known as Siracusans. Syracuse is mentioned in the Bible in the Acts of the Apostles book at 28:12 as Paul stayed there. The patron saint of the city is Saint Lucy; she was born in Syracuse and her feast day, Saint Lucy's Day, is celebrated on 13 December.

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.