Category Archives: Nature

The Magic Light Show

Rainbow

I have a crystal pendant hanging in one window that throws a rainbow out across the room whenever the sunlight strikes it at a certain angle. It is a very pretty effect.

Above is the rainbow it casts on a coffee table.

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Above is a Gallery of the changing rainbow colours as sunlight strikes the crystal.

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As I have said in a previous post, Scattering Rainbows, you can split white light (sunlight) up into its constituent colours using a glass prism, (or crystal, as here). This was first done by Isaac Newton.

 

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Unwanted?

Dandelion

Unwanted?

Sprouting from the brickwork

None-the less you grow

Waiting for that west wind

To blow

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Your seeds fluffed by raindrops

Watch the water flow

Now you’re simply waiting

To sow

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Looking more like feathers

White as driven snow

Still you go on waiting

To go

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This lone dandelion caught my eye as I passed it on the steps. It was so white, not the gold I’m used to seeing in bright sunlight, and the rain had clumped the seeds together, making the ends look like wet feathers.

It didn’t matter to me that I did not plant it, nor that it is considered a weed. I admired its tenacity, flourishing there in the bricks.

I thought it beautiful.

 

Very Nearly Spring

Freesia 1

Haiku 67

Eager to appear

Start your journey in winter

By jumping the gun

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Freesia 2

Sprouting between the dead twigs of my (resurrected) asparagus fern, my spring freesias are just about ready to open. Though they are still a little green, it won’t be long now.

Funny how Nature decides when it will be spring.

By my calendar it should be 21st September!

 

Sunrise, Blood Moon and Mars

Sunrise

Here is a gratuitous photo of a lovely red sunrise, in lieu of a decent picture of the recent Blood Moon.

We had crystal clear skies last Friday night here in Cape Town and a perfect view of the whole eclipse and subsequent Blood Moon.

Blood Moon 1

I did take a few photos, but my little Canon camera wasn’t quite up to the task.

What do you mean, you can’t see anything?

Blood Moon 2

Above is the Blood Moon and below is Mars.

Mars

Though people the world over were witnessing the same event, here in Cape Town we saw the Earth’s shadow creeping across the moon from the opposite direction to those of you in the north.

And when you think just how far away the Moon and Mars are, I think it is amazing that my little old Canon managed to capture anything at all!

 

post script: This is just a fun post. There will be many excellent captures of the eclipse out there online for those who are interested in actually seeing what went on!

 

I’m Still Here!

Asparagus Fern 1

Haiku 66

Don’t write me off yet

Though I seem withered and dead

There’s still a life spark

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My Asparagus Fern had flourished for many years in a giant pot on my stoep. Then one day, about three months ago, it died. (See Casualties of Drought.)

Asparagus Fern 2

Surprisingly, out of the blue, I spotted this one little green shoot.

Asparagus Fern 3

I guess something in there is still alive after all.

 

Snowflakes

Snowflakes 1

It does not snow in Cape Town, apart from occasionally on top of Table Mountain, so these snowflakes are about as close as it gets. They are summer snowflakes, or Leucojum aestivum.

Snowflakes 2

The sun was so bright that the tiny white flowers have little halos around them.

And here is Little Monkey modelling the flowers.

LM and Snowflakes 3

I had to whistle to get her to look my way. She was far too busy checking out the neighbourhood!

LM and Snowflakes 4

I didn’t crop the above photo as I thought you might be interested to see what the streets look like in my area. Sometimes there’s a footpath, mostly it is just grass verge.

LM and Snowflakes 5

People may wonder why the wall of this property, which runs in a straight line around the perimeter for metres on end, suddenly does a little detour here and indents for the width of a panel.

LM and Snowflakes 6

The reason is that there used to be a very large tree right here, in the property line. When the old neighbours put up their wall, instead of chopping down the tree, they detoured the wall around it. I loved to walk past and see this heart-warming little act of kindness.

Well, the tree got old and died, and eventually had to be removed; leaving a wall departing from its line for no apparent reason.

LM and Snowflakes 7

I guess at some point one of the owners must have planted these bulbs.

I love that these snowflakes have appeared and thrive in this little nook, despite never having been watered.

Hello Spring!

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post script: Spring might as well come now. It seems we had all our winter rain in May, so if it’s not going to rain any more, let it Spring!

 

Golden

Oak Tree 1

Haiku 65

Golden shimmering

Drying leaves and whispering

Sunlight reflecting

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Oak Tree 2

If you wonder why I talk about winter one day, spring the next and then autumn, it is because all this is going on at the same time down here in Cape Town.

It is not surprising, considering we can have a week of Berg winds and temperatures of 27C, followed by a cold front passing through, bringing snow on the mountains and causing the temperatures to plummet. If we’re lucky we’ll also get rain, but so far it has rained only once in July; our rainy month!

Oak Tree 3

So yes, technically it is mid-winter here. Yet some trees are still losing their leaves, like my oak tree pictured above, a few have been bare for a while and others are sprouting their new spring growth. Most, however, are Evergreen.

You don’t really get four different seasons here; you get summer for about eight months and not-summer for four.