Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Hot, the Loud and the Proud #2


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Show us your tropicals and exotics, your hot mediterranean colors and wild combinations, amazing discoveries and unusual variations. Or how about something exciting you just saw, a crazy garden,  amazing garden art or design, an inspiring visit or hike?

This meme is open to all (you do not have to live in an exotic location to participate)  and will be on the last day of each month…so mark your calendars and lets do something fun on the hot, the loud and the proud meme. I’ll have the link available early, east coast time (USA) to catch you early birds and even earlier for those of you in other countries.

To link a post or to view on the Hot, the Loud and the Proud Meme, see the link below

The Hot, the Loud and Proud Anthuriums

 

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Its time for our end of the month highlight of the  Hot, the Loud and the Proudhosted on A Plant Fanatic in Hawaii and this is my entry for the month. 

I’m taking you to tour an anthurium farm in Hawaii island. Anthurium flowers are a real cash crop for many Hawaiian flower growers because they have the ideal growing conditions, minimized costs, and anthuriums can still earn good revenue due to the exotic varieties grown here.

My friend’s place, Tikal Nursery is located in the cloud forests beneath the Mauna Loa volcano and is the ideal location for growing these beautiful plants. Tikal is one of the oldest nurseries and has many rare types that are not typically shown or sold worldwide. Below is a photograph of one of their shade houses, showing how the anthuriums are grown.  Even though they get a lot of rain here, there are many dry days so overhead sprinklers are still necessary.

 

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Have you ever seen a double anthurium, it is not widely sold anywhere even in Hawaii. I’m not sure if it would be a popular flower, but in the ground, it looks really spectacular!

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This is my friend showing one of their beautiful Obake variety called Obake - Oshiro, isn’t it huge! These sell at a higher price in Hawaii, so I can imagine what they would be selling at more expensive prices world wide. The wonderful thing about these tropical flowers are their  longer shelf life, so blooms can easily last up to a month.

 

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This is similar to the larger obake above, this one is called Rainbow and it is ready to be picked when the spadix in the middle is a bright yellow showing it to be at its prime. The older it gets, the spadix starts turning more brown.

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I love the pure white varieties, another specialty of this grower and the spadix are also white which is rare, this one is called Rudy’s White after the owner of Tikal Nursery.

 

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There are many rainbow varieties and I’m particularly fond of the very pale green and pink version below.

 

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This true red color is the most popular anthurium that is grown and sold from Hawaii. I think everyone see’s this color of anthurium and readily recognizes its tropical allure.  Personally I think these are pedestrian, but its only because I see them all the time.

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Another rare variety that is un-named. The spadix here is pink and the veins are pinkish red flowing to the green leaflet.

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Say hello to Lady Jane, this is one of the rarest plants, the flower is actually not spectacular, what makes it unique is the foliage. It is the only variegated anthurium grown at this nursery, and its not for sale.

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Don’t you love the variegation of the leaves?  I want some of these, don’t you ?

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Wasn’t that a fun tour, I hope you enjoyed a visit here at Tikal nursery in Hawaii.

 

Come and visit these other blogs to see more of the Hot, the Loud and the Proud at http://aplantfanatic.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Lilly Pond at the Edge of Punaluu

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At the edge of this palm fringed beach at Punaluu is a quiet pond…everyone is at the beach enjoying the hot black sand and looking for basking sea turtles.

But I am more drawn to this beautiful pond filled with purplewater lilly blossoms which are blooming profusely everywhere, I’m tempted to wade in and pluck one out.

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Their flowers and leaves are floating effortlessly on the water and palm shadows fall into the water creating rippled abstracts of their blowing leaves…very hypnotic.

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I walk around the pond and cross two small bridges connecting various parts and see different scenes unfold with pictures framed in many shades of green.


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I love exploring areas that are obviously in slow decay and just waiting for someone to rediscover the beauty of its hidden charms, just like this little pond.

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I’m glad a took a moment to explore this and enjoy her little flowered treasures, it was just what I was looking for at the beach….not quite what anyone expected.


To visit other posts for Watery Wednesdays go to http://waterywednesday.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 23, 2010

Blooming for Friday

 

Gorgeous brassavolas are so delicate and wispy here and yet the colors are so vivid, contrasting in their deep purple petals and white stripes offset by the white throat and yellow stamens.

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They look like precious little medallions ready for a corsage or buttoneer

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Or better yet, just left to its own intact and longer lived while attached to the plant.

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These star shaped orchids come from Central America like bright but filtered light, they exude a light citrus smell in the evening hours to attract moths to help pollinate the flowers….hmm they are attracting my attention instead.

 

For other fertilzer blooms go visit tootsie at http://www.tootsietime.com

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Pau Riders for Today’s Flowers

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Pau riders in Hawaii are today’s flowers presentation. These amazing riders come from all the islands of Hawaii to participate in the annual Merrie Monarch Parade which caps a week of celebration for Hula Dancing.

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These riders are for me the most exhilarating part of the parade.

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Beautiful headdresses and lei ornamentation, and the huge leis draping each horse is painstakingly made with natural materials and fresh exotic flowers from each island.

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I love this amazing combination of purple and red chrysanthemums, roses and

carnations on these amazing and huge leis draping each horse.

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I could never get enough of these beautiful riders from each island.

 

 

 

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This last one is one of my favorite celebrants to the parade and quite a ham.

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To visit other flowers for today, go visit http://flowersfromtoday.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 16, 2010

Morning Time in the Southern Part of Hawaii Island

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Its just morning time and the clouds are still dense, but the sun is stretching out to the sky and wanting to break open through a small opening and showering warm rays on the still quiet corner of Whittington Beach in the southern part of the island.

The light reflecting off the dark silhouette trees onto a tranquil fish pond used by the ancient people to feed her people.

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I just woke up early enough to see a magical moment and capture the waters reflecting a double sun image into this magic fish pond.

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Aaaah, its going to be another windy day and I’m hopeful that it will be sunny enough for me to take out a kayak or even snorkel in her beautiful ponds and hopefully find some underwater gems.

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I’m just glad to have a sweet spot to camp close to the ocean and watch the day unfold and enjoy the company of friends.

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To see other Skywatch Fridays go visit http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wow..Wee, my Hibiscus is Blooming



I call this my Whowee hibiscus flower....its just a crazy combination of orange/red to yellow, they celebrate their short lived displays of color with gusto!


Say hello to hibiscus Chad, I purchased this from a local hibiscus grower who creates some amazing combinations and hybrids of hibiscus plants in Hawaii.  I will have to make a post on my visit to this grower.


Nothing truly spells out tropical like this hibiscus flower, it exudes hot colors and a wild streaks of red/orange to yellow patches, like the brilliant sunset colors we have in Hawaii.


To view other posts on Today's Flowers go visit http://flowersfromtoday.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 9, 2010

Fresh Leis for Aloha Friday

 
 
 
 
 

 

You've never smelled anything so intoxicating and sweet as a flower stand in Hawaii during the Merrie Monarch Festival.  Its almost impossible to not stop by these amazing display's of color and dazzling combinations of leis on display.

 

 

 

Then you get hit with hints of exotic smells of plumeria, ginger and unusual fragrances that draw you in and welcome you....you must stop and look at these leis and see the loving hands that crafted each and everyone on of them.

 
 
 
You need to see and smell almost everyone before you decide which one will be perfect...
not an easy decision.
 
 
 
 
 
How about something exotic and blue like this blue lei made with many petals of the
blue jade vine, a rare beauty only to be seen at this beautiful festival of aloha.
 
 
 
 
Yes to receive a lei from someone special is a wonderful gift...but giving one away is even more true with the meaning of lei giving and sharing your aloha.
 
 
 
To view other fertilizer posts go visit http://www.tootsietime.com and be surprised.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Nuances of Hula


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A world reknown hula competition like the Merrie Monarch Festival is the best example of world wide love for this expression of dance and joy. It covers all age groups of participants sharing their love, from old to very young.

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There is a lot to see and understand in hula dancing and techniques.  Below is a simple primer in understanding the hula dance and all its nuances.

Hula is typically broken down into two different styles of hula dancing. The hula kahiko is the more ancient/traditional style of dancing which is done to chants and traditional instruments like pahu (various drums), ipu (hollowed gourd), iliili (small flat rocks) and other percussions. Here dancing and movement is done with an ipu.

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The hula auana is the more modern style associated with a graceful dancing and movement. This is accompanied by harmonious music with contemporary songs, beautiful and elegant costumes, and exotic adornment like haku leis (intricate braids of fresh flowers and leaves) on the head, neck and various body adornments.

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Most Halaus (hula dance troups) spend an inordinate amounts of time practicing together under a kumu hula ( teacher).  Most kumu come from Hawaiian heritage and have a deep love of the culture and hula that they impart on their haumana (students) . There are special halau’s for the keiki (children), women’s troups, men’s troups and the tutu’s (grand parents). Hula is universal in its appeal to all age groups and is celebrated by the entire family.

The hula hand will show various hula gestures that pertain to a certain act or description.

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This gesture means aloha or love

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This gesture means mauna or mountain

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This gesture means moana or ocean

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In watching the final’s competition of the halau’s during the Merrie Monarch Festival, one is completely in awe of the sheer beauty and pure love that each and every hula dancer imparts on the audience. You can actually feel through the music, chanting and mesmerizing moves pure joy in celebrating dance. The audiences are all enthralled and show mass cheers for each and every performance.


Take a look at one of these final competition performances and see if you can see any of the simple gestures above from this show.  This is last years Miss Aloha Hula winner of 2009.



To gain a better understanding to hula dancing and its history, you can visit this site for more information. http://www.kaimi.org/history_hula.htm

For other My World Tuesdays, go visit. http://showyourworld.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 2, 2010

A Grand Celebration – Hula Style






The week after Easter on the Big Island of Hawaii marks one of our largest festivals on the island called the Merrie Monarch Festival. This is named in honor of King David Kalakaua,  who brought back the traditional dance of hula to his people during the victorian age and christian missionaries, who shunned this public display of skin and "sexy dancing".  King David was a pure believer of Hula as a beautiful form and primary means of communication and enjoyment. It is a large part of his people's heritage and should be shared by his people in all its forms.





This annual celebration spans an entire week marked with the main hula competition, the Merrie Monarch Parade, art exhibits, dance demonstrations, crafts fairs and everything Hawaiian.  People from all over the islands, the mainland, and many international countries come to the Big Island, just to see this event and share in the aloha of its people.  Every event is filled with travellers and admirers of the hula. Visitors come to enjoy the dance,  comraderie and  feel the (mana) spirit of this magical craft.





The main event is the Merrie Monarch dancing competition of the hula halau's ( hula dancing troups) coming from Hawaii and around the world that have been doing this competition since its inception.  It is an amazing venue to be in, with everyone tightly packed in shoulder to shoulder, intense lights and a loud boisterous crowd.  Music is typically played with amazing live bands, live chanting, celebrity performances and even group participation in many of the chants and lively sing-a-longs.

(Following is a video of female hulas winners from Oahu and their 2009 performance)




The entire audience is deadly silent at the start of each performance and captivated by the swaying, and hypnotic dances unfolding and in the end the entire auditorium stands at their feet, shouting cheers at the top of their lungs with teary eyed adjulation for each and every performance. I'll be writing about some of these special moments and amazing events that happen during the week in upcoming posts. It truly will give you a better idea about why living here in the Big Island of Hawaii is special, including her people.

(Here is the video of the men’s 2009 winners in the competition.)





The final competitions are at the end of next week and I’ll be posting those including some fun events, parades and fairs that happen during this beautiful festival…stay tuned.
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