Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world. I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist.
Focussing mainly on Western Australia and Australia, I am seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Monday 31 October 2022

Weekend getaway - Wildflowers from Indian Ocean to Boranup Forest

 A couple of weekends ago we took a three day weekend getaway only about one hour from home that took us from the Indian Ocean to the Boranup Forest and of course there were wildflowers. It's amazing how just a few days away can be so refreshing. 

First off - the seaside holiday town of Busselton and the iconic Busselton jetty. I've brought you the Busselton Jetty a few times over the years. 

Busselton Jetty is the longest piled wooden jetty in the southern hemisphere. Built in 1865 to cater for shipping for both goods and tourists, several subsequent extensions were added up until 1911. A final extension was added in 1960, and the jetty was closed to shipping in 1972. In 1978 when Cyclone Alby swept through the south west, the southern arm of the jetty was washed completely away, leaving only the railway jetty.

We have had many enjoyable times fishing and squidding off the Busselton jetty, then buying hot chips from the fish and chip shop at the end of the jetty before heading home. 

The old shop is gone now, but the jetty is still a focus for locals and visitors. The jetty "Boatshed" interpretive centre is just a short stroll from the beach, and the Underwater Observatory, 1.7 kilometres from shore, which can be reached about the jetty train or by walking. There are also restaurants, a fabulous adventure playground, shady lawned picnic areas, a new Brewery, and a hotel is currently being built. 

The jetty is also the location of the annual 3.6km around-the-jetty swim race. 

The bronze sculpture of the girl located at the beach end of the jetty is called "Fish" by Nicole Mickle. 

The next day was perfect for walking - a bit of sun and cloud - so in the morning we walked part of the Meelup to Dunsborough coastal trail. We had wallked from the Dunsborough end in 2019 and seen lots of wild orchids. We didn't see as many orchids this time around, I think we might have been a bit late - but below you can see on the left hand side some donkey orchids, and on the right hand side the Bronze Leak orchid (top) and the Mantis orchid (bottom). 

A few of the wildflowers along the walk. Clockwise from top left - Hibbertia, Claw flower, grass tree flower, pink Trigger plant, Fringe lilly, Trigger plant, Coastal rose, Southern native rose, Banjine, and in the center one of the pea flowers. 

The native rose family has always been one of my favourites. This is Diplolaena dampieri - Southern Diplolaena native rose

Two coastal views - looking towards Meelup beach - and Castle Rock

After lunch we went down to the Carbunup Reserve.  This little reserve is a great place to see wild orchids. 
I won't even pretend to be รก botanist with acurate identifications - but clockwise from top left there are three of the spider orchid varieties (the middle one being the Chapman's spider orchid), one of the white orchids, the purple enamel orchid, Karri cowslip, cowslip orchids, forest mantis, and in the center are rattle beak orchids. 

Here is another look at the Chapmans spider orchid, the Forest Mantis and the Rattlebeaks. 

And a few other Carbunup wildflowers - clockwise from top left - the red and green Mangles Kangaroo Paw, green Kangaroo Paw, Banjine, Curry flower, possibly Pepper and Salt, ReedTrigger plant, Book Trigger plant, Milkwort, and in the center on of the yellow peas. 

And for those of you I know love me sharing photos of kangaroos that we randomly come across when we are bush walking, we disturbed this one having a snooze in the sun, so he got up and had a scratch. 

We then drove down to the Boranup Forest south of Margaret River in the Leeuwin Naturaliste National Park. I wanted to see how the forest was recovering after the devastating bush fire last December that burnt out of control for several days and destroyed up to 8000 hectares of this iconic native bushland and karri trees, some over 60 metres tall. 

We didn't walk a long way in along the walk trail as it was now late in the day, but it was heartening to see the bushland regenterating after being scorched bare. 

Two wildflowers - pink Fairy orchid and Native Wisteria. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of our Western Australian coastal wildflowers. 

I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Hello there! I love reading your comments. If you scroll down to the bottom you can comment too! I would love to hear from you.

Sunday 16 October 2022

Urban Abstracts Photography - some how to tips

 Hi everyone, I hope you and yours are doing well. A couple of weekends ago I went to a photography workshop with Nigel Gaunt from Red Dirt Photography. I have long admired Nigel's landscapes of northern Western Australia. He lived for many years in Broome in the Kimberly but now operates out of Fremantle near Perth. Please check out his website to see some of Nigel's amazing images. 

Organised by the Photography Group of Bunbury, the workshop was not about landscapes but about urban detail and abstracts - which is quite different to street photography (usually including people) or urban architecture.  

There is always something to photograph even in an urban environment. The workshop opened our eyes to see and appreciate the little things in the urban environment - textures, lines, curves, shapes, colours, repetitive pattens, grunge, rust, cracked and peeling paint, drain pipes, gutters, door handles, numbers, strong colours, contrasts, light, shadows. 

They are everywhere around us - where light, shadows and contrast all play a part and imperfections create interest. Break the rules. 

Nigel suggested that square crop helps pull the viewer into the image and perhaps question "what is it?"

Urban abstracts are not for everyone, but here I am sharing a few of mine from the day. I hope you might find some inspiration to have a go yourself. You don't have to go far from home - even in a rural environment you will find oportunities. 

A couple of different crops of the same scene - seen in a gutter

And one a bit further away

And just because I liked this little corner of escape in someones workday life. 

I hope you have enjoyed deliving into urban abstracts and detail with me today. To see some of Nigels abstracts go here - Nigel Gaunt - Red Dirt Photography

hank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Hello there! I love reading your comments. If you scroll down to the bottom you can comment too! I would love to hear from you.

Sunday 2 October 2022

The Iconic Australian Banksias

Banksias are among Australia's most iconic plants. they were named after Sir Joseph Banks (1743-1820 ), who, in 1770, was the first European to collect specimens of these plants while on his voyage of discovery with Captain James Cook. Cook mapped the east coast of Australia which paved the way for British settlement 18 years later.

Banksias belong to the plant family Proteaceae. Characterised by their flower spikes and woody seed cones they range from ground hugging plants to 30 metre high trees. There are 78 known Banksias, 76 species in Australia, 62 of which are endemic to Western Australia, and 30 of these growing between Esperance and Walpole on our southern coast. In recent years the genus Dryandra has been incorporated into the genus Banksia, so the genus now totals 173 species.

This one you see below here is the Candlestick Banksia - Banksia attenuata, commonly known as the candlestick banksia, slender banksia or biara to the Noongar people. This tall tree grows prolifically in the area where I live south of Perth. 

Over the last couple of weeks I have spent time trying to identify some of the Banksia varieties we saw during our south coast travels in August to East and West Mt Barren, the Fitzgerald River National Park near Hopetoun, Tozers Bush camp near Bremer Bay and the Stirling Range National Park north of Albany.

Here are some of the Banksias I have been able to identify with the help of The Wildflower Society of WA's facebook page, Kevin Collins, Kathy Collins & Alex George's book Banksias, and Gillian Craig's book Native Plants of the Ravensthorpe Region.Thank you all!

I hasten to add I am not a botanist, but I have tried my best.

Below is the Showy Banksia - Banksia speciosa. It grows along the south coast from East Mt Barren to Israelite Bay. A shrub to 8 metres tall it flowers throughout the year, with a peak in summer and autumn. You can see in this photo the beginning of the flower, flowering, and then the seed head. These photos were taken near Esperance.

One of the most spectacular of the Banksias in Fitzgerald National Park is the Scarlet Banksia - Banksia coccinea. Also growing up to 8 metres, it grows from Albany to the Stirling Ranges, Fitzgerald National Park and east to Stokes National Park. It flowers from June to January. These photos were taken in the Stirling Ranges National Park but we also saw them widespread in the Fitzgerald National Park on the coast.

This one is the Lemann's Banksia - Banksia lemanniana. It is a shurb to 5 metres and grows near the south coast from West Mt Barren to Ravensthorpe. As you can see below, the flowers hang down. It flowers from October to January. We saw this one in the Fitzgerald National Park near East Mt Barren.

One of the largest Banksias flowers is the Woolly Banksia - Banksia baueri. A 2-3 metre high shrub it flowers from May to July, so these flowers you see here are finished. We saw this plant in Fitzgerald National Park and Tozers bush camp near Bremer Bay. It flowers from Kweda and Toolibin to Bremer Bay, east to Munglinup and also on the South Stirling plains.  

Another banksia which had finished flowering when we visited is Baxter's Banksia - Banksia baxteri. We also saw this one in Fitzgerald and Tozers. It grows to 4 metres near the south coast from the Sitrling Ranges to Oldfield River east of Hopetoun. It flowers from December to May. 

The one below shows how tough Banksias can be. This is the Suuthern Plains Banksia - Banksia media. We saw it clinging to the rocky cliff below the lookout at Cave Point in the Fitzgerald River National Park near Hopetoun. There is a huge variation in size of this plant from 10 metres to a prostrate 0.2metre shrub. It grows from the eastern end of the Stirling Ranges to Israelite Bay. 

Flowering March to August these flowers you see here have finished. 

I am told this is also the Southern Plains Banksia - Banksia media. In this variation the tips of the "perianth" are coloured. They can be grey, gold, pinkish-red, chocolate brown or even black. Below you see the side and above views. 

The flower below we saw along the access road to Mt Trio in the Stirling Ranges National Park, in an area that had been completely burnt out prior to our visit in 2019 following the devastating summer bushfires. It was so heartening to see the bushland coming back. 

I believe this is the Fox Banksia - Banksia sphaeracarpa - the botanical name relates to its spherical form. A shrub to 2 metres tall it has a wide range from the Darling Plateau east of Perth south to the Stirlling Range and Cape Riche. 

I believe this ground hugging variety, which we saw growing at the Central lookout on the Stirling Range Drive, to be Banksia gardneri var brevidentata due to the short tooths on the leaves. It flowers from April to July and is restricted to the Stirling Ranges and a single population near Albany.

Well that is it from me today. It has been a fascinating journey tryng to identify these banksias. I learnt that the leaves of the different banksia varieties are all a bit different so it is important to photograph the leaves as well as the flowers.

Here is a close up of the Banksia fruit or nut. The follicles open to release the seeds. Sometimes this does not happen until the nut is burnt or completely dried out.

I have blogged about banksias before -

In celebration of the Australian Banksia

the Candlestick Banksia

Oh and just one more, not from the south coast but I am going to include it anyway just because I liked it and we saw it in a Banksia park near Esperance - Lesueur banksia or pine banksia - Banksia tricuspis. You can see how different the leaves of this banksia are. A small tree to 4 metres it grows around Mt Lesuer near Jurien on the west coast north of Perth and flowers from March to July. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of the 30 Banksia varieties that grow along our south coast region of Western Australia. 

Here is a link to some more Banksia information:
Book review - Banksias by Collins, Collins & George

I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!
MosaicMonday at Letting Go of the Bay Leaf
Sharon's Sovenirs 
Our World Tuesday

Pictorial Tuesday 
ThroughMy Lens 
My corner of the world through my camera 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global hosted by Randomosity. 
       and Little bird - Pienilintu
Thankful Thursday 
Welcome to Nature Thursday

Hello there! I love reading your comments. If you scroll down to the bottom you can comment too! I would love to hear from you.