A visit to the botanical garden

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For a change from walking on the beach Peter and I visited our local botanical garden for the first time in… about fourteen years. Like most such places, it consists of several hectares of native vegetation plus a few hectares of developed grounds – lawns, walking paths, water features and the like. After our recent rains the gardens were looking green and fresh. The lake is home to many tortoises which poked their noses above the water from time to time, then disappeared again. We noticed lots of little fish, probably native (I hope) but no koi. Koi are pretty but they are considered a pest species in Oz, so just as well.

There’s a Chinese garden guarded by the usual pair of lions and featuring lots of round structures. This picture was taken though a round window. I expect you might have guessed.

As with all oriental gardens, there’s lots of water, both moving and still. There’s an emphasis on framing and reflections, invoking peace and tranquility. A rocky stream flows into the reflecting pond and that, of course, attracts wildlife like the Australian ibis (very similar to the Egyptian one, but its own species).

We went walking in the shade of tall trees admiring the sub-tropical plantings. A number of plants had labels, but not all. I THINK this is a fan palm. I love its architectural shape and the way it catches the light.

Later we went off to the orchid house. It’s only small but it contained some beautiful specimens. Here’s just a few.

It was a pleasant walk – except for the mosquitoes who didn’t seem to understand they weren’t supposed to be out in the middle of the day.

You can find out more about the garden at its website.

Apart from that, the Chinese Government has pretty well stopped talking to the Australian Government altogether.

“Beijing has blasted the Morrison government for its “insane suppression” of the Australia-China relationship, as it justified its tit-for-tat scuttling of a high-level economic and trade dialogue with Australia. The suspension of the China-Australia Strategic Economic Dialogue on Thursday was apparently in retaliation to the Morrison government’s scrapping of Victoria’s Belt and Road deal and came after the announcement of a review of the 99-year lease of the Port of Darwin by Chinese company Landbridge.” [source]

We keep bullying them, you see.

I can’t imagine what the CCP will say if (when?) the Australian Government decides to cancel the 99-year lease for the Port of Darwin with the Chinese company, Landbridge. We will, of course, have to pay compensation, but that strikes me as better than having effectively the Chinese Government right on our northern doorstep. The Government should never have agreed to the lease in the first place, but given China’s current belligerent behaviour, and with increasing Australian and US troop movements in the vicinity, it needs to be done.

And that’s that for this week. Thanks for reading. Hope to (virtually) see you again next week.

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