Not quite a teenager

I have been informed by WordPress that today is my Anniversary of blogging. Yes I am a twelve year old blogger.
I did do a few posts back in 2012 but no where as many as I do now. Back then I did 12 posts for the whole year!!!

This is one of my early posts, inspired to share after one of my European holidays. I hope you like to look back at my Tales of a Distant Farm. In keeping with my European Thursday Doors theme, I am including another door from Italy with a surprise behind that door.

That year I was also in cooking mode and this is one of mine which was modified from other recipes

That’s one milestone I guess so its on to the next posts to inflict my bit of Australia on your screens, things to make you go ohhh ahhh and some to make you scream 😂

Lucky Dip – 4 March

Lucky Dip – Saturday Mix

“Your story cubes this week are:”

His DNA was found on the arrow at the crime scene.

Now Tom was on the run. At first he hid where ever he could. Sometimes in abandoned buildings or somewhere he felt safe. He had to get out of town with just what he has in his pockets but first he had to find somewhere to sit and think.

He knew just the right place to go, close to town but is almost a world away from troubles.

Tom was resourceful and knew how to fend for himself. He earned the Backwoodsman Badge in Boy Scouts, coming first in not only his troop but first overall of all the boys who were being examined for their badges. Learning how to survive with very little, living off what the land can provide, he excelled.

He was able to pick edible plants along the pathways, catch fish in that little stream that ran under the bridge where he sat and considered his options. He slept as well.

He really was a pawn in the bosses hands. They made sure that Tom touched everything that was at the crime scene. Tom decided that it would be better for him to disappear somewhere in the world. The law was after him to get justice for Slims widow even they really knew who killed Slim.

The tree? Well trees have happiness and every story should end on a happy note.

The Leopard Lily is all abuzz

It started like any normal morning. After unfurling from their nighttime rest, the Leopard Lily flowers petals opened to greet the day.

Already the bees started to arrive to seek vital nectar and pollens to take back to their hives. A European Bee was quite engrossed when a Stingless Native Bee saw what was going on.

“Hey you! You big bag of yellow. Get off my flower!”

The European Bee, whose name was Tom, just kept gathering.
“Oy, didn’t you hear me? Do I have to hover here for ages?” said Steveo, the Stingless Native Bee

Not used to being ignored, Steveo flew right up into the flower
“Look at me,” he said right in Toms face, “It’s time we knew who owned what around this garden.”

“Now look around here,” said Steveo, “From up here all the orange flowers you can see are mine.”

“Are you even looking?” “Come up here and see what I’m talking about.” “Don’t make me come down there!” an exasperated Steveo said.

“Go on, off you go…..and don’t come back!”

“Now for a bit to gather and enjoy”
“Don’t these stamen look a treat?”

“Mfheese rr tho gosth….nom nom nom”

“Hey Steveo, looks like you found a good supply there.”
“Yeth,” said Steveo swallowing hard, “these are so good, want to come and share?”
“No thanks, I’m off to Trevs place. I hear he has some coffee bushes flowering,” said Billy with a wry smile.

Nom nom nom. Steveo made sure that all bits of what the flower had to offer, going over the top and shuffling pollen into his pollen baskets below.

Going along the stamen like this gives……well I’ll let Steveo tell you.
“As I move down, I scrape my rear legs where the pollen baskets are and pollen fills the baskets.”
If you look really hard that little orange ball at the Native Bees rear is the pollen basket. It looks quite full to me.

“Hee hee, looks like no one spotted me”

Cee’s FOTD
Bren’s Floral Friday #86

One day on the sill

“It was like a surreal dream”
“Yeah, we were doing our normal patrol”
“All I heard was Ernest give a yell”

We all rushed over to where Marchin’ Mark was lying. Everyone tried to help. Someone was taking his pulse, someone started CPR, we all thought how would we cope without Marchin’ Mark out there getting us along on important missions.
The nest won’t be the same

We all wondered what could have happened. Later on the CSI unit will be on the scene to work out what may have happened. Sorry, I promised Lois I wouldn’t use acronyms. That is the Criminal Scientific Investigants

“Oh well we should take him back to the nest I guess”
“It’ll be a lot easier if we all pitch in.”
“Hey….did you hear that?”
“It came from further along the trail”

“Hey you lot.”
“Get over here.”
“We found the bloke who did Marchin” Mark in”
“We need a bit of help”

Not wanting to see anyone else get too hurt, a couple of the others came over. We should be able to hold him down if everyone grabs a piece.

We’ve got him now. He has to go you know. Once a killer always a killer and a poacher of gold. We were sure he had been hanging around this trail for a while now.

“I reckon he’s the bloke that took all of Josephs gold”
“and left him in a ditch on the side of the trail”
“The Queen will know what to do with him”
“Might be easier to take him back in pieces”

“That sounds like a plan”
“Grab a bit and lets go”
“Yeah, I’m building up a thirst”
“Let’s catch up at The Puddle On Step 3 bar”

At The Puddle On Step 3 bar what else would be on non-stop rotation. Anyone else want to have a dance?


Ragtag Daily Prompt Thursday: Punctuate

We met in the bar downtown
“Do you comma here often?”
“Excuse me, was that an exclamation, Mark”
“No it wasn’t”
“Well don’t you have a question, Mark?”
“Come here? No it’s outside of my bracket.”
“I would need more than what I get now to be able to afford coming here often.”
“I earn a lot less than what most percent of the people earn in here.”
“I might have to go to hospital next week”
“Is it serious?”
“Not really just a check on my colon.”
“Sorry, I must make a full stop here as I have an early morning start.”
“What do you do?”



Life of a blue Agapanthus flower

This is number eleven in my series of following flowers from buds to wilt and beyond. I discovered that I had a different blue Agapanthus flower from all of the others I have in my garden. I also have white Agapanthus flowers and that may be the next life of….

“Agapanthus (Agapanthus  spp.) also known as the African Lily or the Lily of the Nile is a fleshy rooted perennial. It is part of the Liliaceae family and is native to Southern Africa.”

I took this photo this afternoon, it was a bit hot. They are quite different aren’t they.

Let’s start with the buds. I have a number of bud photos. I should have really thought about presentation but oh well.

All the future flowers tightly wrapped waiting to burst forth.

A trio of the dark blue flower buds

Still snug in their safety wrap

Starting to push forward and into the sunlight

Finally casting the casing aside preparing for all the florets to open – photo in the shade

Finally casting the casing aside preparing for all the florets to open – photo in the afternoon sunshine

The paler blue flowers are falling out of the bud casing

Reaching to the sky to open into the sunlight

While other buds struggle to open and flower fully

What I like about Agapanthus is how their flower buds mature at different times so there always seems that there are Agapanthus flowers in the garden. Look how many are almost ready to open and how many are still uncoloured buds.

Almost fully open. The casing is still attached to a couple of florets.

Finally free to start to become the flowers that they are meant to be

The outside florets open first while the inner buds bathe in sunlight

Gradually the whole umbrel or flower head starts to become full of open florets becoming the flower everyone knows.

Soon the umbrel will be full of open florets

The ones I have (in this series) are so different to the ones I usually know. The petals are getting paler, I think, while the stripes are becoming stronger

I have a number of clumps of Agapanthus throughout the garden. Some are smaller than others. They never seem to flower all at once as I see around town. In one clump this year, probably the best flowering year I have seen in ages, not all of the plants flowered.

Getting in close

There are lots of insects who enjoy the shelter and food the Agapanthus can supply.

These next two photos come from my archives.

An Orchard Swallowtail Butterfly getting right into the flowers

A Blue-faced Honeyeater intently getting to the bottom of the flower

Like everything on this world, the demise is always on the horizon. The mingling of buds, open flowers and withered flowers

I love the various colours as the flowers slowly deteriorate

Some of the flowers just fall to the ground while others drop only their petals.

Some flower heads don’t have many seed pods developing

While others are laden with pods

The next stage is a brown dried spindly ball. I thought I may have had an old photo but can’t find it. So this is where you use your imagination

This is my warm up guitar playing song. The Stones with one of their county best

Also for Cee’s FOTD

The unco spider

This is a story of the most unusual event that I saw late in the afternoon this week.

I was wandering about with my camera as I watered the plants, just in case something interesting happens to appear in the garden, and had just finished watering the garden after a particularly warm day. Near the tap, I took a series of very bad photos due to the almost lack of sunlight and in the shade of the verandah.

On the verandah between a hanging pot of flowering Nodding Violets and a verandah post I saw this weird looking spider navigating its way along a series of almost invisible strands of web.

The spider didn’t look like it was in control of its own around 20mm long body and legs. It seemed to be trying to get to that white dot just above the spider in the following photo, after travelling from the shelter of the hanging flower pot with the most uncoordinated fashion with legs that went anywhere they wanted.

I had to discover what this spider was and found out that it is a Whip Spider.

“Whip Spiders specialise in feeding on wandering spiders, usually juveniles. The spider sits at the top of a few long silk threads that run downs below it among foliage.”

This description made Whip Spiders seem way more agile than my spider!

Almost there just a bit of “upside down and how did the hell did the “packet” end up underneath” bit of confusion was part of the entertainment as it literally bounced it’s way along the strands of web.

“When a wandering spider walks up one of these handy silk `bridges’ it gets a nasty surprise. The waiting Whip Spider uses toothed bristles on the end segment of the last leg to comb out swathes of entangling sticky silk from its spinnerets.”

“These rapidly entangle the struggling victim so that it cannot escape.”

The final goal was reached and the Whip Spider checked to see if any of the last meal was still available

I was just about to stop watching and taking photos when the Whip Spider started to fold its legs along side its body. I thought I would get that last photo in case that would help me ID the spider.

The best bit was that in that last photo, the spider had finished with the lovingly wrapped meal and just tossed it away. You can just make out the motion of the packet as it plummets to the ground.

*Information in italics from the Australian Museum


Species colubrinus
Genus Ariamnes
Family Theridiidae
Super Family Araneoidea
Order Araneae
Class Arachnida
Phylum Arthropoda
Kingdom Animalia

The Water Lily and the Dragonfly

The mornings cool breeze was still softly blowing as the days suns rays began to be felt upon my skin. I wondered what has been happening over at the house dam. From the house I have seen more and more flowers appearing, water lilies with their large showy blue blooms.

“Do you want to come with me over to the house dam?”
“Let’s take the short cut and climb through the fence rather than walk to either of the gates. Be careful. Look!”
“Doesn’t the dam look lovely? The green of leaves, stems and stalks with splashes of blues, pinks and yellow.”

Just then something whizzed past my ear. What was that I wondered?
Looking around I can see what it is.
“Come over here but slowly. It’s a Water Lily and a Dragonfly”

Out on the dam there’s lots happening.
The frogs are too fast and have plip plopped into the water as we get along the edge of the dam wall.
“It would good to get a classic frog on a lily pad photo wouldn’t it.”
“Make sure you have your camera at the ready.”

Over there is an early flower just opened, not yet had its blue hue applied.
“Some of the Stingless Native Bees are already flying in and out with pollen sacs full I guess.”
“Come let’s go a bit further around this way. I am sure something was over here.”
“Did you see that?”

A Red Skimmer Dragonfly swooped the water and then nestled in among the reeds. Never one to sit still for long, he was gone in a flash.
“Did you see where he went?”

“On the flower over there can you see the two tiny Stingless Native Bees?”
They are about 10mm long.
The bee in the rear has pollen sacs that look quite full.
“Those yellow lumps on the rear legs are sacs where they store the pollen for the flight back to the hive.”

Maybe just sit here for a while longer shall we and enjoy the peace and sounds of the bush that surrounds us.
“I have a marmalade sandwich under my hat if you would like to share?”

Cee’s FOTD

Rose and the insects

A story in the day of a rose.

The rose didn’t mind that insects came to visit. Some were quite welcome although petal munches weren’t encouraged.

One morning a little green hopper was enjoying the sun after seeing the end of a tiny spider drop to the end of the flower.
Looking up after hearing this loud noise he exclaimed “What the hell is that!” knowing it wasn’t a bee. “It better know how to land without breaking anything!” he hoped.

As it grew closer the little green hopper started to think of finding a new flower to hang around in for a while.
“Someone like that would lower the tone of this fine neighbourhood” he said, “this is a place where every ones knows every one else and we can swap flower scent stories.”
No one wants to chat about big stinky folk next door

“Oh no” he sighed, here come the bees” “Once one drops in and heads off to do his waggle dance, the place just fills up with buzzing and flicking pollen” “Not good for my hay fever,” as he sniffled and could feel a huge sneeze coming on. “I’m heading out of here, see ya!”

See I told you didn’t I. Don’t blame me if you start to sneeze.

Cee’s FOTD

Life of a Sydney Rock Orchid flower

I have a few pots of Sydney Rock Orchids that were my mothers. The name comes as these plants can be growing found on granite rocks from Victoria to Cairns. In the wild they have mosses or ferns covering the roots. My orchid has Hares Foot Ferns growing in the pot in the garden and it does quite well. These are Dendrobium speciosum.

This is the story of their life. The flowers last for a few weeks and look rather spectacular as the racemes flow into the garden. These photos were taken over a three week period.

The racemes start in the joint of the rather stiff and leathery leaves

The buds are sent downward into the garden

I think the new buds look a bit like chilies

When the flowers open they are a wonderful white with subtle spots inside

Looking from above you can see how far the racemes extend from the plant

After a while there is a blend of old and new flowers

The new flowers are bright and open while the older flowers become yellow and close

They close a bit more every day as they age but still retain their yellowness

Eventually they close completely before dropping into the garden

Rain and going away for a few days prevented me getting any further photos and now there are just some dead sticks where once the was wonderful flowers.