Beach Walk with Flowers

by Virginia
(Brisbane)

What is a flower? Is it just a pretty thing to look at or does it hold more meaning?

Some flowers are purely ornamental, there for our viewing pleasure. Others, such as the zucchini and cucumber flowers are precursors to a fruit that will provide sustenance and nutrition. However, without the male and female flowers together, no such fruit will ensue.

Other flowers are themselves sustenance for bees and other insects. Think about your morning toast and honey for breakfast. Without flowers, the bees could not have made this magnificent luxurious liquid.

A flower can be a symbol of hope and tenacity. Against all harsh conditions, a flower has struggled to appear. Wind. Harsh sun. Salt air. Torrential rain. Freezing temperatures. Dry heat. Each flower has adapted in order to flourish and exist. What would our world be like without flowers? Dull and colourless. Devoid of beautiful fragrance. A visual blandness.

What do I like about flowers? I love taking photographs of flowers and see it as an expression of creativity and appreciation of art and beauty. Symmetry is one of my key interests. The central core is usually a circle, with petals radiating from the middle, evenly spaced. Upon closer inspection, the central core has many tiny stamens that create repetition – another vital component of balanced art principles. The stamens also have texture and quite often, layers of texture. Colour and contrast add to a visually pleasing image with the petals quite often a contrast to the core.

Petals themselves can be a silken texture or slightly furry. They are the luxurious cloak or scarf that the flower wears around her neck. Not biologically significant except their shape and colour are used to attract a pollinator – much like a female using designer fashion to attract a male. Petals vary in shape from long and slender to round and squat. In size from tiny to large. In number from 5 – 40. A rose for example can have up to 40 petals and these petals have been viewed as a romantic symbol and used for scattering at weddings and on the bed of lovers.

The flowers that I have included here were all growing within 50 metres of each other. They were growing in a beachside village that is buffeted continually by salty wind and 300 days of sun per year. They all were fairly small and had no scent. The leaves of each of the different plants were quite hardy and some spiky – offering a protective barrier around the flowers. They were, to me, flourishing in a less than friendly environment.

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May 12, 2020
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Brilliant!
by: Jill

What brilliant observations, Virginia! Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts about such beauty that some would overlook.

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