Sunday, 13 December 2015

Bomarea caldasii -- Climbing Alstroemeria

"Bomarea caldasii -- Climbing Alstroemeria", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

Bomarea caldasii, also known as Climbing Alstroemeria, is a rapidly spreading plant, growing up to 12 feet in height. Twining around any available support, it produces clusters of narrow, multi-coloured, orange tubular flowers. Native to the northern portion of South America, it is a member of the family Alstroemeriaceae

In many places, Bomarea caldasii is considered to be a pest as it smothers and kills supporting trees and prevents the growth of native seedlings and under-storey plants by blocking their light. As well, seedlings are capable of growing in the forest interior and will creep along the ground, strangling saplings and smothering low-growing species. 

Both the generic and specific names are taken from the surnames of well-known people: Bomarea in honour of Jacques Christophe Velmont de Bomare, 18th century French patron of science; caldasii in honour of Francisco José de Caldas, 19th century Columbian naturalist and explorer.

I am posting the drawing of Bomarea caldasii even though I am far from satisfied with the result.  The actual flowers not only have richer colours, but they give off a much fuller expression of the colour orange than I have achieved thus far in my drawing.  So, expect me to be presenting you with another version of Climbing Alstroemeria sometime in the near future!

"Bomarea ovallei -- Lion's Claw", 
drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

Back in August of this year, I posted a drawing of another member of the Bomarea genus: Bomarea ovallei, commonly known as Lion's Claw and native to the coastal area of northern Chile.  This drawing remains one of my favourites of 2015 and is featured in my 2016 calendar. 

Botanical and historical details taken from various Internet sources.


Suki waiting expectantly for me to move!
Suki, as is usual this time of day, is sleeping peacefully in my recliner.  She allowed me to recline in the chair for an hour and a half after I had my breakfast -- soothing my painful back after a restless night -- before beginning her daily campaign to get me out of the chair so that she could settle into her predictable four-and-half-hour morning siesta -- a nap which ends about 11:30 when she begins lobbying in her efforts to make certain that I realize that it is approaching the noon hour at which time she expects to be fed!

By the way, this is all happening on a Saturday morning instead of the usual Sunday as tomorrow is the BIG day when "my boys" will arrive for a visit -- accompanied by their parents, of course.  At ages 3 years and 13+ months, respectively, neither Braden nor Rònàn are quite old enough to drive themselves here although Braden, at 3, would probably like to try!

I plan to get some extra rest today so that I will be able to enjoy their visit for at least a couple of hours without too much discomfort.  It will be wonderful to see the whole family again as we celebrate an early Christmas as well as my birthday.  Hopefully, I will end up with some photos of the boys to share with you all in next week's posting.

This coming week will also be busy as not only do I have some medical appointments, but there are friends who want to drop by for quick birthday-related visits.  It will be lovely to see them but I must remember to pace myself and get plenty of rest in between visitors.

I will finish my column today and then post it early tomorrow morning before I begin to prepare myself to welcome my greatly anticipated visitors.



"St. John the Baptist -- Glorious Prophet and Forerunner",
by the hand of Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012

When all the people asked John, ‘What must we do?’ he answered, ‘If anyone has two tunics he must share with the man who has none, and the one with something to eat must do the same.’ There were tax collectors too who came for baptism, and these said to him, ‘Master, what must we do?’ He said to them, ‘Exact no more than your rate.’ Some soldiers asked him in their turn, ‘What about us? What must we do?’ He said to them, ‘No intimidation! No extortion! Be content with your pay!’ A feeling of expectancy had grown among the people, who were beginning to think that John might be the Christ, so John declared before them all, ‘I baptize you with water, but someone is coming, someone who is more powerful than I am, and I am not fit to undo the strap of his sandals; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing-fan is in his hand to clear his threshing-floor and to gather the wheat into his barn; but the chaff he will burn in a fire that will never go out.’ As well as this, there were many other things he said to exhort the people and to announce the Good News to them.  Luke 3:10-18

Whatever you may believe about St. John the Baptist or the Christ whose coming he predicted, one thing we can all "believe" in is the Good News he announced to his followers.  

What was he saying to "the people", the tax collectors and the soldiers?  He was telling them (and us) that real Peace -- whose coming we celebrate each year at this time -- can only be made present in the world:

  • by setting aside greed and sincerely sharing what we have with those around us who have less; 
  • by forcing aside that root of all evil -- the love of money -- so that we treat others fairly -- with justice and equity; 
  • by forsaking the lust for power over others and, instead, finding ways to gain consensus without the use of intimidation or fear.

And so I pray -- 
May I always be a channel of peace for the world by never forgetting the "Great Commandment":  to love God above all else and to love my neighbour as myself.


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