Macro Monday

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Kakabeak; Clianthus maximus, or kōwhai ngutukākā in Māori. Image: Su Leslie 2019

I was given several seeds of this native plant, and this one is the first to germinate.

Although kakabeak is popular with gardeners in New Zealand, most plants are grown from a just few cultivars. In the wild, both Clianthus maximus and Clianthus puniceus are critically endangered.

Although it’s likely my seeds are from one of the common cultivars, it is still a wonderful plant to grow for its beauty and as a food source for native birds. Eventually.

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”  

― Chinese proverb

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32 thoughts on “Macro Monday

  1. PS
    and I love the quote – about the burst year was then and next best time is now –
    and sometimes – depends on the context –
    but sometimes have added a line to the oak version:::

    “like best time to plant an oak tree was fifty years ago
    second best time is now
    or….
    go and find someone who planted one and see what you can harvest from them”
    something like that –
    depends on what you needed the tree for

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The seedling looks a bit like a sunflower baby to grow! Beautiful tale and GOOD LUCK, we should all try to protect anything in nature …. Am right now in Switzerland and I saw with great dismay how along one lane, every single shrub of box ´tree´ was eaten naked by some caterpillars. Years ago we had the same thing in France and our 60 yrs old box shrubs were dead within hours. They needed to be cut down to the roots and burnt…..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh no; that is terrible. In New Zealand one of our largest and most iconic tree species, the Kauri, is suffering from a disease that rots the roots, causes defoliation and ultimately kills the trees. Kauri are incredibly slow-growing and we’re losing trees that are hundreds of years old.

      Liked by 1 person

      • …. so I wish you even MORE LUCK with those seedlings. I’m hurting bodily when I see such things. Hundreds of years, destroyed in no time, what a waste of beauty and goodness!
        I shall check those Swiss shrubs out in springtime, but IF they know what it is (and I do know), they will also have to take them all out, burn them and NOT plant the same box plants anew. That would just be a friendly invitation for the buggers to finish the newcomers too.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Yay to first one of hopefully many! 😄 I love the sight of new life sprouting from the earth! There’s nothing quite like it especially in spring. And what a wonderful quote that is, I haven’t heard it before.

    Liked by 1 person

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