|Posted on 19 December, 2018 at 3:20||comments (0)|
Recently I went on a trip to walk across a forest reserve to Balls clearing. Jack Ball farmed a small clearing in the bush in the early 1890's. The bush next to his clearing has been preserved in its natural state.
A foxglove is not a New Zealand native, but it loves the margins of the bush. It has such a wonderful sense of proportion. Only a few flowers come on at a time. The ones above are waiting. The ones below are wilting and forming fruit and seed.
From the clearing by the carpark, the bush looks to have lots of green leaves.
There are, it appears, some quite big trees in this reserve.
I recognise one of the taller trees as a kahikatea. We had those on the farm at Wharepoa.
I had to take another foto of foxgloves before I started the walk.
The path into the reserve was well formed. Right beside the track was a trunk with some leaves growing out of the bark. These leaves did not belong to the tree but to another plant, an "epifite". The epifite has large leaves in this case. Epifites do not grow on soil but on the outside of other trees,
This trunk, that of a Kahikatea, has moss growing on its bark. This is very common in North Island bush.
I will publish more fotos of this walk later. Cheers Chris the Pipemaker
|Posted on 13 December, 2018 at 16:20||comments (0)|
Recently I went for a walk along the Karamu Stream in Havelock North.
This the first thing that greets me. A Lawsoniana. They are native to North America, but are so common in New Zealand you might get the impression they are natives of our country. They are used as hedges as their foliage is dense, and they are reltively small trees. Their foliage gow right down to the ground. This improves the value as shelter trees.
This foto shows someting of the foliage and bark. I like these trees as their leaves [and wood] are full of a beautifle resinous scent.
Not far from the Lawsoniana tree, across the fence I could see a very remarkable plant. The flowering part reaches up into the sky with branches that carry the flowers. This is a parellel veined plant referred to as flax in New Zealand, but it is not related to the flaxes of the Northern Hemisphere. Fibres from the plant were used to make rope here in New Zealand particularly for rope used in the shipping industry.
This foto shows something of the character of the leaves. The parallel veined plants are called "mono- coty- ledons" [written as one word]. This traslates as "one leading leaf" which emerges from the seed. Grasses, bamboos and lillies all belong to this class of plants.
The flax flowers are almost like grass flowers, but they still have a character that makes them worth having in a garden.
The Kowhai plant has a spare beauty. When in flower it is covered with beautiful yellow flowers. Now the flowers are turning into pods as in this picture.
The leaves of the Kowhai look edible like peas. They are not. The whole plant is toxic... not deadly but enough to make you sick. The seeds can kill... but even the wood dust is not too good for you.
Ducks can be seen crowding the downstream water. There are a few ducklings helping. Hidden by the railing a birthday boy is climbing into his new kayak. Dad is watching from his ute.
Upstream the water is flowing smoothly and quietly.
The birtday boy struggles to paddle his canoe straight.
A wattle in flower overlooks the park.
A gum tree satnding in front of a Totara adds to the Australian theme of the park!!
A secret musshroom indicates its existance withe a tiny mushroom flower.
A red hot poker, neither red nor hot, indicates that in a few weeks it will be both.
White Ti-Tree in flower. The honey from these flowers is valued greatly.
I am trying to prove my camera will do close-ups. It always intrigues me how well the T-Tree can count. Every flower has five petals!
Earlier flowering flowers have lost their petals and have started to form capsules. When the capsules have ripened, they become very hard. The capsule splits and releases thousands of tiny seeds into the air and onto the ground.
This little violet flower is all alone. But it is pretty. It is not a violet though.
This attractive plant is a Hebe. At the ends of the branches a new set of leaves form, inside the still unopened last pair of leaves. Then at the appropriate point, a white flower emerges, but these flowers are not on their own. They farm a long racine of hundreds of tiny flowers.
The Hebe can count as well. It is stuck on four.
This cereal looks like barley. Barley is useful. This grass [as is barley] is not loved like barley. It is called barley grass and is not loved by owners of cows or sheep. The sharp spikes are quite strong and can adhere to hair and wool. After a time the head moves further and further closer to the skin of the animal. At the surface of the skin, the head keeps moving. In this way a cow or sheep hide is ruined. It causes irritation to the beast.
Banksia flowers are also on a racine... [like hebe flowers]. Unlike Hebe flowers they are not white but red. They turn into little capsules, like those on Ti-Tree.
Cheers Chris the Pipemaker.
|Posted on 12 December, 2018 at 1:45||comments (0)|
Some fotos of what is in my workshop.
I have jsut harvested some culms[canes] of bamboo from the bamboos growing in my front garden.
This bamboo culm is from a bamboo with the distinguished name of Bambusa Latiflora. It grows large culms but in clumps. It is not a running bamboo.
I have been going to some school fairs. I needed to have things to sell to young students.
The large bamboo is great for small children as they can't swallow them. Blowing is easy and by coveriing the end you can alter the sound. Even simple tunes are possible.
Thes pencil holders are made from short sections of the larger culms. If there is no node, then I cover the end with board. In this case, 4mm customwood.
This is one I use for my superglue. I also keep a 2B pencil in it. The bamboo grew in a park in Auckland called "The Domain". It is the same domain which has the Auckland Museum.
This foto shows the pieces I took with me to a recent school fair.
I use the pencil holders to hold my cards. You can see wooden pipes, small whistles, large whistles and tabors, long thin pipes with one hole only. I call them overtones pipes too.
You can see my website is now updated with new wallpaper. I am just gettiing used to it. Cheers Chris the Pipemaker.
|Posted on 11 December, 2018 at 18:40||comments (0)|
The third part of my trip was to teach young students on Gore how to make bamboo pipes.
A student uses a dremel to clean out the finger holes of his pipe.
This student gets up close with the dremel.
Another yong student working at cleaning up the finger holes.
This student had really made a fone job of pyrography using hot wires.
Pyrography using these little hot wire burners is easy to learn.
Sanding gives a fine finish to the bamboo. We are using Bambusa Textiles form my back garden.
A round file is ideal for cleanig of the burs left by the dril used for making the holes.
The superglues is ideal for gluing as it seeps into cracks and crevices. The parts can be glued when assembled. This student is gluing parts of the fipple in place.
The students are wearing aprons and are very good with wearing protective gear. The super glue here is not and expensive grade so is easy to remove from the skin if it accidently gets on the skin.''
This young student has been very successful in completing a pipe with artistically inspired pyrography. All the students in the group completed pipes that worked.
Cheers Chris the teacher of pipemakers.