My Garden

June 15, 2017 at 7:59 pm | Posted in Australia, Birds, Gardens, Photography | 7 Comments
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I didn’t join in the wordpress photo challenge this week because I always delete my out-of-focus photos, and we were to post a clear photo and an out=of-focus one that we like.

Instead, I thought I would share a little of my Aussie winter garden.

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Here is one of my zygocactus plants, with a jade plant behind it.

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Two varieties of bromeliad, with the green one flowering. I love the stalks of pink and blue. The purple one does not flower as far as I know.

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I have about six or seven different grevillea species in my garden. This is the flower of one of them. Grevillea are great for attracting native birds with their nectar. Most of them flower for much of the year.

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Here is a similar grevillea to the one above, with a beautiful rainbow lorikeet that has come to feed off the nectar.

I love my garden, made up mostly of Australian natives, but with various plants from other parts of the world as well.

I hope you enjoy the colour.

Taking Shelter

January 28, 2013 at 4:01 pm | Posted in Australia, Nature | 8 Comments
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It has been raining here for two days as the remnants of Cyclone Oswald reach to the southern areas of eastern Australia. It will get worse, with stronger winds added to the rain. We will be fine where we are, but others won’t be as lucky.

There are thousands of people in Queensland and in northern NSW who are having it very tough at present. Many have been flooded from their homes and businesses. There have been deaths usually as people try to cross through swollen creeks and flooded causeways. (Some folk never learn).

States of emergency have been declared in some areas, and all emergency services are flat out helping those who are in trouble. Then they get some idiot like the one here.

As the rain falls and the wind blows, we look out onto our front verandah and see that other creatures are affected by the weather too. Our verandah always becomes a refuge for birds trying to get out of the rain, especially rainbow lorikeets.

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 We also have the ubiquitous noisy miners which, for once don’t gang up against the other birds. They all look rather forlorn at times like this

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Today, I also managed to photograph a couple of the magpies that decided to take shelter there too. They don’t often come this high (the verandah is at second-storey level on our sloping block). They spend most of their time hunting for bugs and other creatures in their territory, which includes the lawns of other houses within an area of about a hundred metres radius of us.

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I hope that the people affected by the floods are able to find shelter – just as these birds have done.

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© Linda Visman

28th January 2013

For the Birds

February 10, 2012 at 10:58 am | Posted in Australia, Gardens, Nature, Writing and Life | 2 Comments
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On Our Verandah  

It is 9.30am, and I am sitting overlooking the front yard with my coffee, trying to do some work on my latest novel.

Crows are cawing in the distance, somewhere near the lake, and a magpie carols happily nearby. The drone of a chainsaw over the ridge competes with the their calls. I hope no more trees are being massacred over there.

In the bottlebrush tree that brushes against the verandah rail next to me, several Rainbow Lorikeets chitter and squawk as they milk nectar from a few late blossoms.                                                                  A Noisy Miner on a banksia blossom

 Noisy Miners dive-bomb any other bird they see, and the threatening clack of their sharp beaks is clearly audible over the background noise.

A flock of corellas flies over our little vale, probably off to find nuts or fruit or seeds on trees further inland.

I was pleased to see this morning that the two young Tawny Frogmouth owls are still roosting in the rough-barked tree by our back door. They seem to know they are safe there.

  The other day, as we ate lunch on the verandah, a pair of Rainbow Lorikeets came to see if there was seed in the feeder that hangs under the eaves. There was none, so they asked for some, politely at first, bobbing their heads and bodies at us from the rail a couple of feet away. We told them we would get some after we’d eaten. That is when they became demanding, screeching at us impatiently.

As soon as my husband approached the seed can that we keep on the verandah – after we had finished eating, of course – they could hardly contain their excitement. They hovered next to the feeder as the seed went in, and then chittered their thanks as they tucked into their own lunch. 

© Linda Visman 10th Feb. 2012

If you enjoyed this, you may also be interested in these other posts:

Birds and TreesCicada SummerTreesParramatta Park.

Birds and Trees

October 31, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Posted in Gardens, Nature | 2 Comments
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You may wonder what kind of birds those are at the top of my blog page. You may also be wondering what country of the world they, and I, live in.

Rainbow lorikeets

Well, the birds are Rainbow Lorikeets (Trichoglossus haematodus), and the photo was taken on my verandah a few months ago. The birds are on our feeder, eating the seeds that we occasionally stock the feed-tray with. We don’t do it too often because they need to be able to forage for themselves.

At present – spring and summer – the lorikeets feed on nectar from the native plants around the district. The main blossoms they feed on now, mid spring, are bottlebrush trees (various varieties of Callistemon), and we have about half a dozen in our yard. Thus, we get to see lots of Rainbow Lorikeets.

And where in the world are we? We are in Australia; in the state of New South Wales; near the east coast, about forty-five km south of Newcastle and a hundred km north of the state capital, Sydney. We are on the western side of the largest coastal lake in the country, beautiful Lake Macquarie.

Eastern rosella

We love trees and birds, and so we make every effort to provide a habitat that is friendly to both. That means mostly native species of trees and bushes that will attract native birds. The lorikeets are not the only brightly coloured birds we have around here. We also have the much shyer Eastern Rosella (Platycercus eximius), a small parrot with a bright red head and breast and colourful wings and tail.

There are many song birds too, the main ones being the magpie (Cracticus tibicen) and the butcherbird (Cracticus torquatus), with their beautiful warbling songs. 

Kookaburra

It is the kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae) that tells us, by its raucous laughing call, that the sun is about to rise in the early morning, and it also farewells the sun each evening.

These are just a sample of the great variety of birdlife that abounds in our area. We love our trees and our birds, and will continue planting those trees and shrubs that bring the birdlife into our yard – for their benefit and for ours.

© Linda Visman

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