Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Flowers and Plants in Turkey

foreign(I will still be editing these plants, am still identifying them)

In the very short time i was in Antalya to attend an international conference, i just did not let my plant encounters unrecorded. Maybe at the innermost fiber of my consciousness, i am a botanist, a horticulturist, a hobbyist, an agriculturist, or just a mere plant enthusiast. April was the beginning of spring and lots of flowers are already in bloom.

Date palms are common sights, in parks like this at the back of Dedeman Antalya Hotel and Convention Center, facing the Mediteranean. They are also seen along roadsides, in small parks and car parks of buildings.
The next photo is the stairway to the Mediteranean, at the back of Antalya Hotel. Friends and pets even had picnics here sometimes. The paths downstairs is lined with lots of plants growing in rock crevices or sometimes intentionally planted by the hotel staff.

The plants above and below are all growing on the calcareous rocks on the cliff to the Mediteranean. I hope i can identify them, but it is very difficult and i don't know the right references for them, yet, but i hope i can.

This is the only one i am sure of, the ivy. At the right is a fern, species unknown.
These are just weeds growing on the wooden pavement and rock crevices.

Lantana camara on the left trying hard to find soil but still vigorously flowering, the yellow Cassia flowers. The flushing shrub on the right i still dont know.

These are already tended plants on the roadsides or on the pots near the hotel's garden. At the right is a while Lantana camara bush.

At the right is an Iris lily, which is just a weed here.

The purple flowers: Wisteria sp.

Wild plums in Ibradi, Antalya

Friday, October 23, 2009

Biodiversity Garden, so it seems!

(This cannot be opened yesterday, thought a virus had set in, can't even report to blogger! then today it is okay again, dont realize what had happened). Grrrr! holloween greetings?

Early in this lifetime i prefer an organized, orderly, well-arranged garden. In fact i had been dreaming that i was full time in planting a flower garden on my lawn. The reality is i don't have a lawn because i don't have a house. In our house in the province what we have is a mix-up of several ornamentals, flowering or just vegetatively growing. I longed to one of these days re-arrange them in the orderly fashion i had in my dream. In fact, i actually abhor what Nanay did with these plants. It started nicely, then all the pruned parts were replanted in whatever available space there. 'Sayang' sabi ni Nanay! The problem is, every top which she put on the soil will eventually grow! Talk of green thumb, Nanay has all green finger tips! There was even an episode when i had to uproot some tips and throw them away. Nanay will think that some hens could have gotten them out of the soil.

Today, i changed my perspective. Instead of arguing and disliking this garden, which is the only one we have, i'd rather love it, appreciate it and tend what it already is. Now i am calling Nanay's garden as Nanay's Biodiversity Garden. It is in fashion, environment friendly, love for earth, etc. etc. And then the magic came! Here comes a lot of butterflies especially at the start of the rainy season. Everytime i am home, i am in front of it, tending it, loving it and appreciating and photographing the butterflies. I even immitate Nanay's style to make it more biodiverse. I even planted an orange wild Lantana camara coming from my last trip to Bohol. It is very well loved by the butterflies. Nanay is already 79 years old, and i think this is one of her best therapy for staying strong. I am now reaping the fruits of her labor, can view the flowers and the butterflies. We are heirs to this beauty and in the future this will stay.

Maybe i can already conduct a species richness or Biodiversity Index study in this garden. Next time i will do that!
Hypolimnas bolina on Duranta erecta flowers
Ideopsis manillana on Lantana flower
Papilio rumansovia on the left and Ideopsis manillana feeding on dill

I love the colors of young rose leaves! This larva is very artistic!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wildflowers...that's what we first!

Dennis and I, a few years ago were so enthusiastic to make a coffee table book about wild flowers. We will get the photographs, he will provide some artistic sketches on the complete plant, and we will decide what to do next when it comes publishing time. "Who will provide for the publication", I said, it will be very costly. He said we will decide when we get there.

The following years we took photos, photos and more photos of the supposedly "wild flowers" we saw during our out of town travels. I only had a Point and Shoot then, but he eventually got a new DSLR. When it's time to arrange and choose the better ones (maybe there are no best) and write something about its classification and whatever comes to mind about the flower...hopes went dead! Even just the identification is so difficult! Moreso, most of them are already domesticated somewhere, it just happened to traverse a lonely path and became wild. Maybe an owner throw some parts or seeds and it went growing untended, as if WILD. Many of them are not even indigenous.

Hence, i will put them here, visually thinking this is a coffee table book!

Capparis micracantha
I saw this stunted bush while walking in the bushy secondary growths in Mabini, Batangas. I thought it is wild and endemic, but how will i know. Research work on this, i realized is so tedious and difficult...especially if you don't have much time. The next is also from the same area.

Breynia nervosa

Costus afer (spiral ginger)
This member of the ginger family is vigorously growing in a formerly farmed area, now conquered by the invader plants. The white delicate flowers at the apex only bloom for a day.
Clerodendrum intermedium (kasupanggil)
This 'kasupanggil' as the old people call them, is also growing luxuriously in a second growth forest. But there are also some coconuts scattered around, untended and just left on their own.
Heliotropium indicum
Ipomoea sp.
This vine grows along the roadsides and one of the last survivors during the summer hot months in Western Batangas. Those green roundish top-like structures near the purple flowers are the fruits. They mature in summer. The yellow variation at the right might not be an Ipomoea, as the leaves are different. However, i still don't know what they are!
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis
This is not domesticated but can be found in marginal areas. Only the butterflies love this! My 7-yr-old nephew, Allen, impressed her mother when he recited its scientific name. Its common name, though, is porterweed.
Tecoma stans (yellow trumpet bush)
This yellow flowering bush is vigorously growing in the wild areas in Siquijor, an island difficult to reach in the Visayas. There is no airport yet there, and the 1-hr boat ride from Dumaguete City is normally rough due to converging currents along the way. Siquijor, beautiful by itself, is made more awesome because of the profuse growth of this plant.

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