The quest for Eucalyptus Polyanthemos continues

One weekend recently, I went to Norwood.  Well, really, I was deposited in this well heeled inner Eastern  suburb while my beloved went on a mission further from home, with a plan for collecting me on her way back.  The idea was that I would look for a birthday present for my Mum.  I had a few other goals in mind that involved the very nice bookshop there and a bit of random wandering.

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At some stage I decided a gelati would be perfect, as you do, given the chance.  So, gelati in hand, I wandered away from the main road and down a side street to see what I could see.  There on a bank sloping down to an unlovely carpark were some glorious sheoaks and some not-so-common eucalypts.  To me they seemed like plausible instances of E Polyanthemos, but the tallest I had ever seen.

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The evidence there had been many-anthers was all over the ground.  I think my eyes were caught by the fluttering of somewhat oval leaves in the breeze.

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Before long I was climbing the bank and dodging the cars.  Some of the trees had been cut and had re-sprouted with juvenile leaves that were almost round, and quite large.  My manual (Holliday and Watton’s Gardener’s Companion to Eucalypts) says ‘The juvenile leaves are blue and almost circular, the apex notched.’  Round, yes.  Blue, yes.  Notched?

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One thing led to another, as it so often does (well, in my case)… so I picked a small sample and tucked it in my bag.

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After a long walk and as much shopping as I could take, I sat myself down at a bus stop and waited for the return of my beloved.

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This morning I unwrapped the resulting bundle… very pleasing.



And another from the same pot… which is a little greener than the picture suggests…


And now for today’s completely gratuitous flower picture. This poppy is a completely different colour from any of its predecessors.  You have to love nature, and the frolicsomeness of bees rolling around in pollen…



Filed under Dye Plants, Eucalypts, Leaf prints, Natural dyeing

9 responses to “The quest for Eucalyptus Polyanthemos continues

  1. and you did find something for your Mum? : )
    Beautiful the way the leaves were outlined with the black. And a gorgeous bee-poppy.


  2. Cher Mcgrath

    I can’t remember if I’m registered to comment on your blog, but I’m in a bit of a hurry before work – shouldn’t be indulging, but it sets me up with something to think about as I’m checking out books.

    I want to say re that bright red bundle [singlet & scarfe] August 2014: WOW! I’ve never seen anything so rich & ….. red …in colour [& I’ve seen a lot of India Flint’s work]. I noted the pipe & eucy leaves, but was there something else in the bundle? It is mouth-watering. And to see that you had been to India Flint’s ‘Back country’ the day you unwrapped it – what a day! I went up to see that too, & came home all inspired. Isn’t she brilliant?

    I wonder if our Adelaide water is still so ‘interesting’ that it helps with the results of bundle dying….

    Oh, and about your local tree with the bees: when you click on the image to enlarge, the bees pop up like Boeings!, & the sun shining on them is glorious. Great blog.


    Cher McGrath

    Hand made paper

    ! …

    Thank you


    • I love the idea of my blog being an indulgence! India’s bundles are every bit as red and more (the red ones, that is)… but that one delighted me… if there was anything else in there it would have been vinegar, but in all honesty, I don’t remember. There was a LOT of E Scoparia, one of my favourites. Wasn’t back Country wonderful? I will have to try that trick with the bees!! Thanks for commenting, I appreciate your kindness and enthusiasm very much.


  3. Susan

    Haha, of course I too had to check out the bees….what a colour and how interesting your leaves were outlined in black. Very nice.


  4. Marg Easson

    Hi mazzaus,

    Beautiful and inspiring arty posts. I am excited by the way that your adventures in nature are sustainable and not only produce exquisite art but deepen your relationship with the Earth community. You really get it!
    A fellow artist and I are working with 6 disadvantaged secondary schools on a Peace Flag project for Come Out next year. The title is Building Bridges to Peaceful Futures and we will be using tie dye and shibori.
    Although the main focus is on tolerance and compassion, we also want to introduce students to the notion of making peace with the earth by using natural and sustainable art materials.
    I have been trying some eco dyeing techniques but with limited success and am wondering if you ever run workshops so that I could show students some basic ways of connecting art with nature. Since I have made the shift from working with toxic paints to using natural materials that I source ie dyes, pigments and acacia gum, I have noted that like you, every step in nature is alive with potential.
    Thanks for the inspiring blog.


    • Dear Argy, thanks so much for this lovely comment and your kind words. The work you are doing sounds just wonderful. ‘Nature is alive with potential’ sums it up rather wonderfully 🙂 m


  5. Pingback: Mending the mending | Local & Bespoke

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