Catching the fleeting scenes of many splendored life with a camera.
'Look closely. The beautiful may be small' — Kant

11 May 2012

Flowering Trees.
Tamarix, Bottlebrush tree, Pōhutukawa, Silky oak and Goldenrain tree.

A flowering tree is always a feast for the eyes, and springtime is when most trees come into blossom.
The genus Tamarix (tamarisk, salt cedar) comprises about 50-60 species of flowering plants in the family Tamaricaceae, native to drier areas of Eurasia and Africa. The largest, Tamarix aphylla, is an evergreen tree that can grow to 18 m tall. They usually grow on saline soils, and also tolerate alkali conditions.
I ran into this beauty by chance while strolling in the pine forest.

Pale pink tamarix tree in full blossom
Tamarix aphylla tree in full blossom
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Tamarix tree flowers
Tamarix tree flowers
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Pink tamarix flowers
Pink tamarix flowers
(© 2012 LightColourShade, by-nc-nd)

Tamarisk flower clusters
Tamarisk flower clusters
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

The first time I saw this flower I exclaimed, It looks like a bottle brush. Turns out that's precisely its common name. Bottlebrush tree – aka Callistemon (citrinus) belongs in the family Myrtaceae and is endemic to Australia. The flowers are actually made up of stamens.

Bottlebrush (Callistemon citrinus) flower
Bottlebrush (Callistemon citrinus) flower
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Although a bottlebrush lookalike, this is Pōhutukawa — a coastal evergreen tree in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae, that produces a brilliant display of red flowers made up of a mass of stamens. The is one of twelve Metrosideros species endemic to New Zealand.

Pohutukawa Metrosideros excelsa flower close-up
Pohutukawa Metrosideros excelsa flower close-up
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Grevillea robusta, commonly known as the southern silky oak, Silky-oak, or Australian Silver-oak, is the largest species in the genus Grevillea that grows as tall as 30 m. It's an evergreen tree with dark green leaves reminiscent of a fern frond with greyish white or rusty undersides, native to eastern coastal Australia and thriving in subtropical and dry rainforest environments. It is the largest plant in the Grevillea genus that can grow to more than1m in diameter. It's golden-orange flowers follow the same pattern as bottlebrush.

Grevillea robusta (Silky-oak) branch with flowers
Grevillea robusta (Silky-oak) branch with flowers
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Grevillea robusta (Silky-oak) in flower
Grevillea robusta (Silky-oak) in flower
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Koelreuteria paniculata (Goldenrain tree, Pride of India varnish tree or China tree) is a a small to medium-sized deciduous tree native to eastern Asia, China and Korea.

Koelreuteria paniculata var apiculata, Goldenrain tree, Pride of India, varnish tree, China tree
Koelreuteria paniculata var apiculata, Goldenrain tree, Pride of India,
Varnish tree, China tree flowers panicles.
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

Goldenrain tree fruit is a three-parted inflated bladderlike green pod that turns  orange or pink when ripe. The seeds are edible when roasted.

Goldenrain tree Koelreuteria paniculata seed pods
Goldenrain tree (Koelreuteria paniculata) seed pods
(© 2012 LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

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