gum trees

I’m totally immersed in the splendour of Spring.

I LOVE to visit Botanic Gardens and I have been holding back a visit to the Canberra Botanic Gardens waiting for Spring to warm the air and coax the trees and blossoms from their winter slumber.

It was worth the wait.

Come with me for a walk around. These Botanic Gardens are special as they capture the diversity of all areas of Australia. Only native Australian plants are showcased. It has the world’s most comprehensive display of living Australian native plants. A place for recreation, inspiration, science and learning. 

Welcome! To the world of Australian plants, botany and horticulture!

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The light is magic, perfect conditions to take in the glory of nature.  This is going to be a day to savour, so first we fortify with a shot of caffeine.

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A snack on the deck

A seat near the frog pond

A seat near the frog pond

The motorbike frogs are in full voice as we pass by.

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Botanic gardens 2 PC sx40 034_4000x3000

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The atmosphere of the rainforest is damp and cold, like the rainforests of Tasmania. The many broad leaf plants of the tropical rainforest are also in this area but they cannot replicate the steamy jungle feel of the tropical rainforest. Soon I will be back home in that tropical climate, I think I will miss the freshness of the Canberra climate as I sweat through the heat and humidity of summer.

Back into the sunlight and the Banksia are in flower. Beacons of light and full of nectar for the birds.

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Tracks and paths meander in all directions. Everywhere is a rhapsody of spring. I am in photography overload.

Xanthorrhoea plant

Xanthorrhoea plant

These are unique and interesting native plants, pop over to Madoqua’s blog, “Have you ever” she has actually grown some from seed, an amazing achievement, and you can read about them.

Another path and another region of Australia.

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Can you spot Jack taking photos?

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Jack feels at home in this area, born in Sydney he spent his childhood wandering through the bush with his little dog Pinto. Most of that bush is now suburbia. Botanic Gardens are needed to preserve what is rapidly being lost to urban development.

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They have even recreated the iconic red centre, not easy to achieve in this climate.

Then everywhere are the magnificent gum trees. For me the gum tree shouts Australia. So many varieties and 67 of those varieties are spread through these gardens. The soft silver trunk splashed with all the colours of the spectrum. Others with bark thick and knobbly. Pioneers were amazed to see these trees that shed their bark and not their leaves. Round every bend they towered over the surrounding bush, calling to be photographed, again and again…

 

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Beautiful trunk colours

The wattles have been flowering around Canberra for weeks. The happy splash of yellow brightens all the suburbs and they are also on show through these gardens.

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This has been a day to remember, walking through nature is good for the soul. The beauty of these gardens highlights how diverse the plants are in this huge land. From the rainforests to the deserts and vast grasslands they are all represented in this Botanic Garden. A definite must see if you are in Canberra.

Could not resist adding one more photo...

Could not resist adding one more photo…

 

Now for another coffee stop before we head home.

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I am joining Jo’s cyber walking group this week. Jo leads people from all over the world as they walk us around their home towns and other places of interest.

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Categories: Australia, botanic gardens, Canberra, Canberra Botanic Gardens, gum trees, photos, travel | Tags: , , , | 23 Comments

On the road again… Tra-La-Tr-La

OH DEAR…..

I have just done a post telling you all where we are and what we are doing BUT I pushed publish and some how lost it all…

We are now in a lovely, free camp area, but it does not have power, so the battery on the computer is now getting low, so I am not able to repeat the post, so I will be in touch again when we get to a power source…

Damn, it was such a good post, Lol….

Suffice to say we are back on the road with Matilda and life is good, and we are heading north….

Categories: Australia, australian travel, camping, freedom camping, gum trees, Townsville | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Freedom camping in a ghost town among the ghost gums…

Ghost gums at Mary Kathleen, ghost town

Tonight we are freedom camping in an old uranium mining town of Mary Kathleen.

The town was built in 1958 to support the Mary Kathleen mine. A bustling community of 400 lived here until the mine closed in 1982. Two years later all the buildings were auctioned, the biggest property auction ever conducted in Australia, the buildings removed and all that remains are the bitumen roads and concrete pads that once had houses standing on them. It is quite eerie to see the large area stripped of all life and imagine the community that once lived, laughed, cried, worked and played here. Tonight there are 4 vans of various types spread around the town. As I look over I can see on one of the distant roads a couple of the campers have camp fires going, glowing in the dark. There are no facilities of any sort, no water, no showers, no power, no loos. This is camping stripped to the basics, but I was amazed to find there is internet connection here. So we can still connect to the world in cyberspace….

It is half way between Conclurry and Mt Isa on the Barkly Highway. We have just spent 3 nights in a lovely caravan park in Cloncurry. The Oasis was peaceful, grassed sites with clean amenities so decided to stay and catch up with laundry, e-mails, blogs etc.

We have now left the Matilda Highway and onto the Barkly Highway which is known as the centre of the outback country. The scenery has changed dramatically, no more sweeping plains. The road undulates along between mineral rich, rocky outcrops. This is now mining country. Long bridges span winter dry creek beds, waiting for the onslaught of summer rain. Gum trees line the road covered in glorious creamy yellow blossom. The wedge tail eagles, kites and crows cluster around road-kill and as each vehicle passes they leave the feast to soar and wheel above till the road is clear and then descend again to continue with the meal.

Mineral rich rocky outcrops

Jack exploring dry creek bed

We wandered along the dry creek beds and as the sun catches the sandy soil it glistens with a million mineral particles. I try to catch the sparkle with a photograph but it does not show it.

These are our neighbours

Apart from the few other campers these are our cute neighbours for the night…

Jack exploring dry creek bed

 

Categories: australian travel, camping australia, freedom camping, Ghost town, gum trees, outback, photos, travel | Tags: , , , , , | 8 Comments

Travel Theme : Art

Ailsa of <Where’s my backpack>Has this week chosen a subject that is integral to travel. Art is all around us: even underground, go see Ailsa’s photos of a NYC subway.

Most towns have art galleries and we always search them out. Then there is art and craft shops and galleries. Sculptures, murals, mosaics, creations large and small to gaze at and photograph.

But I consider the greatest art of all is the stunning displays that nature presents us with. We try to capture that beauty in our photographs to bring the memory of places we have visited home with us.

The great artists have left many paintings for us to admire. When in Adelaide we went to Hahndorf, a short drive into the Adelaide Hills, to see the “Cedars” home and studio of the great Australian artist Hans Heysen. He has brilliantly combined the majestic beauty of the Australian gum tree into his works of art.  The house was as he left it, full of his paintings and drawings.(click on this link to see more of Hans Heysens beautiful paintings, he was a very prolific artist)It is now maintained by the family. The garden was a haven of peace, then we walked across to his studio set among the magnificent gums he loved and painted all his life. Copies of the original paintings were positioned in front of the actual gums in the setting that he painted them.

Magestic gums

Copy of Hans Heysen painting showing the gums in the picture

Gum trees in the afternoon light

Letter from Hans Heysen

Categories: Adelaide, art, australian travel, gum trees, photos, travel, travel theme | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments

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