Energy in the Study

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The house we live in was built to order for a family with three children.  We can tell because the master bedroom is on one side of the living area and at the other are three small bedrooms, each with a small built-in desk and a set-back window with a storage box in front of it.  One of these rooms is now my study.

In my sporadic reading about feng shui, one thing that has stuck with me is that if a window is placed opposite a door, energy (chi) will come in the door and go straight out the window.  So it is good to have a plant to divert that energy.  That is how my study is arranged.  For some time I have had some grass heads from one of our grass plants on the box in the window.  Recently I acquired a parlor palm, hoping it will like the northern light.  This week I decided it was time for flowers.


Looking at this, I get an image of the chi going around these three in figure eights until it gets quite dizzy, and never gets over to me at my desk at all.  There can be too much of a good thing.  But I don’t really think that’s what’s going on, because they give me so much pleasure.

I should stop admiring the scene and get that palm into a pot worthy of its size and growth potential.


Happy Equinox


A few photos to celebrate the arrival of spring.

P1000949I tried to plant something else for the winter in this pot.  It didn’t make it.  These violas don’t care whether it is winter or spring.




The iris came through very well this year:

They have a cozy corner which gives them a good head start on the season.

This volunteer jumped into bloom when I wasn’t looking.  Another case of the comfort of a wall.  P951 volunteer

And then the poppies.  They turn up wherever they please.


It’s a new year, astrologically.  A more sensible time for new beginnings, I think, than January 1.   In this spring quarter of the year I hope to have more than photos to put on this blog.  I also hope  these photos make you smile.

Hong Kong Park and Aviary

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Hong Kong Park is just one of the green spaces in the city of Hong Kong.  It is an attractive place to walk through, with walkways and constructed rocks and fountains.

Waterfall over sculpted rock

Waterfall over sculpted rock

The day we visited the Park it was full of school children accosting strangers to practice their English.  “Where do you come from?  How long have you been in Hong Kong?” they asked.  They had papers with the questions written out.  Their geography wasn’t extensive.  They didn’t understand San Francisco or California―or perhaps it was only the countries that were on their sheets.  When they heard “U.S.A.” they beamed.100_1061

The regular part of the park is overshadowed by the aviary, a quite large screened area where the ground dips down and a walkway takes the visitor through at the level of the trees where birds are happiest.  There were many varieties of birds to see in the aviary, but most of them avoided my camera.  One group was particularly unafraid of humans.100_1063

Another brightly colored bird was too busy eating, on a feeder hung right at the visitor’s eye level, to care who saw him.100_1065

The aviary included some unusual trees, such as this one which grows fruit on its trunk.  (It’s those small green buds.  I don’t know what they look like when ripe.)fruit on trunk

For the visitor to Hong Kong, this park should not be missed.100_1062

San Diego Flora

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When I visit San Diego I am always amazed at the plantings.  I’ve assumed that the area was naturally rich in diversity and greenery.  I have been reading about Kate Sessions, called the mother of Balboa Park, and I find that she is largely responsible for the illusion that everything just grows in San Diego.  In fact, things grow well, when watered, but many of them came from elsewhere, and many of them were brought in and urged on residents by Kate Sessions, beginning at the end of the 1800s.

The Palm Canyon in Balboa Park contains many, many palms, but they didn’t just grow there; they were planted.  The fan palm came from Hawaii.fan palm

Other palms, so high I had trouble getting a picture, were brought back by Kate Sessions from Baja California.  No doubt not all of the trees in Palm Canyon date back to Ms. Sessions’ work: they grow very thickly in spots.100_0966

And other plants thrive in the shade of the palms.


We also explored the Botanical Building, filled with exotic plants which would not thrive out of doors.  I liked this odd plant best, but neglected to note its name.100_0971

For better pictures of all manner of things in and around San Diego, including flowers on Friday, visit the blog of Russel Ray: http://russelrayphotos2.com