Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Blooming in August

I missed again posting for July's GBBD. Our plants are already at the height of their lushness and growth last month, in response to the rains that started to come last June. However, despite being already at the rainy season, rains also seldom come. It normally just arrives together with storms and typhoons. And when there is a big international storm our Southeast Monsoon is affected, giving us rains and strong winds. But the plants do favorably well, as long as the soil still has sufficient moisture for the roots, and the skies are mostly open for the sunlight to get through.

These are my plants that are already flowering. They will continue this way, as they are mostly perennial plants.

one of my vanda orchids left from previous collections

Turnera ulmifolia growing nicely even during the dry season, but lovelier with the rains

Pentas lanceolata red experienced dryback last season, now starting to be lush again

roses are showing the new leaves, favorably producing more leaves to favor flowering

this shrimp plant dwindles also without water, but we maintained 
it to at least live and wait for the rains

another Pentas lanceolata, with bigger umbels

even the adenium looks happy now
a perennial lantana which has been here for several years are just pruned at the start of the rainy season to be rejuvenated. It is a favorite of the butterflies too.

i love the new lantana shoots showing some colors as protection from UV rays

Crinum zeylanicum only flowers during rainy season, its scent is lovely too. It experienced defoliation by several moth larvae last dry months

This Hippeastrum X johnsonii, have a few scapes latently arising even after months of rains. 

This Salvia also dwindled during the dry months, but we kept it alive to wait for the rains. Now it is flowering profusely and beautifully.

There is still a lot of flowering plants this season, i just limit the crowded photos in a post. These are just a few of our plants, a lot more are seen around including my hoyas. They need a whole post for themselves.

Monday, August 1, 2016

The Resort University

The Visayas State University is not new to me. I have been there many times in previous years and many employees there are my friends, back from our undergraduate years and others gained through work. I am already very familiar with its landscape, landmarks, structures and more. However, my trip there last week, Tuesday to Friday, seem to have been more meaningful. I might not be able to enumerate within my head the reasons, but the positive feelings and all things light and joyful are all gained from there, so i guess it was really a significant one.

We didn't sleep that Monday night in Manila, as we left 2:00am for a 4:30 am flight. We were a bit far from the airport, so we need some time allowance for any eventualities. It was just a 1hr-10min flight from Manila to Tacloban, and another 2 hours road trip to VSU, Baybay, Leyte. Yes we will pass by Tacloban, a just recently famous city because of the vast destruction caused by typhoon Yolanda. That was November 2013, and not much destruction are still visible now.

 wrong side of the sunrise

the real sunrise side

The sunrise on the plane could be a wonderful one, but we were sitting on the wrong side. I wish i had envisioned it, to have chosen the left position. Fortunately, the plane turned left on the way to the landing approach. Sunrise was still lovely but i had a very short chance to take photos, and the sun was already high up on the horizon.

 small islands can be seen on the nearby waters

the landscape of Leyte with patches of communities

The VSU campus is bound on one side by this mountain and on the other side by the sea. Forestry students have easier access on resources for learning. That also goes to students taking up Biology, Taxonomy and systematics. Wider areas are devoted to fields for agricultural and animal researches. The faculty have enough housing facilities inside the campus for their families.

I didn't show the actual academic campus as it is wide and full of buildings. The above is just the end at the north side with a few houses. 

tall trees and coconuts are planted all throughout the VSU grounds

 the sea in front of VSU is a declared marine sanctuary

 three big islands are on the horizon, one is Cebu and the other is the Camotes Island

The big talisay trees are dotted with epiphytes most notable are endemic orchids

a close-up shot shows a clump of flowering Bulbophyllum  and a lot of endemic Dendrobium orchids

 students just linger near the seashore to discuss assignments or just have fun during breaks

 This is one of the most beautiful sites i saw there, tying a hammock between two trees either leisurely or an easy corner to read a book.

 some pairs also just sit there on the expanse of the shore

 a panoramic shot of that expanse is truly inviting

sunsets are wonderful too

a very beautiful tree art form with the sunset background

another sunset before we left 

We reviewed and evaluated some research projects there. We also visited a nearby people's organization, which is the recipient of one abaca twining machine. People are accommodating and we finished our schedules on time. We also had enough spare time to meet and visit old friends, where their actual experiences during Yolanda were relayed to us.  There was also an ongoing garden show, and a friend gladly toured us. 

It is not surprising to hear that the university will be called The Resort University. Amenities and structures to effect such a name are already being done. There are actually special events already being held there for a fee, and income from such events will augment the universities resources. Students enrolled in courses related to hotels, restaurants and tourism will have good training on these grounds. More power to you Visayas State University.

Related Posts with Thumbnails