Monday, February 23, 2009

Symphony In Orange

Vivid Colours In A Tropical Paradise

Photographs copyright: DAVID McMAHON



I'd be delighted if some expert could tell me what these flowers are called. The first two images was shot in Singapore in December 2007, as I walked around the island city-nation. A tropical thunderstorm had just passed through the area and I was making sure that I was never too far from an arcade or some form of shelter.


There was sound logic behind this. Just in case the heavens opened again, I would be able to do a quick sprint to the nearest point of shelter to protect my precious camera.

The flowers were simply growing by the side of the footpath, in that wonderfully landscaped environment that has been a part of my earliest Singapore memories, ever since my first visit there as an eleven-year-old.


It was not just the formation of the plant that attracted my attention, but the way the vivid orange stood out against the green foliage in the background. So too the graceful manner in which the leaves seemed to echo the intricate grace of a Thai or an Indian classical dancer.


This shot (above) was actually taken in Langkawi, Malaysia, last year. We were walking around the vast hotel property when I noticed this, but couldn't find anyone to tell me what it was called.


This frame (above) was shot in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur. We'd been sitting by the pool at our hotel for a few minutes when of course I had to do my customary "what's-in-the-vicinity-for-me-to-photograph" survey and lo and behold, I saw the same plant a few metres away.


After I'd shot a couple of frames of the blooms themselves, I also noticed that the long, narrow stems made an interesting sight with their contrasting colours and gentle angular orientation. So, quite naturally, I had to shoot a frame of that unusual view as well.

Obviously it was the same species of plant, but I couldn't find an amateur horticulturalist to tell me what it was called. I guess I'll just have to go back there to find out .....

(Extra, extra, read all about it: I've been interviewed here. Thank you to all those who have followed this link and checked out the interview. There have been so many wonderful comments that I've tried to reply to each one personally - but you're setting a cracking pace. My humble and heartfelt thanks to all of you for the wonderful tributes and thoughts you have shared on the interview.)

Visit Luiz Santilli Jr for the home of Today's Flowers.

50 comments:

Male Enhancement said...

Mary was here, and very much enjoyed reading your blog

Craig Glenn said...

Hi David, bet your spending more than an hour a day now! Face it, with your popularity you might as well go full time! LOL

I like the fourth photo down. If you look at the base of the flower there are a pair of eyes peeking out! How cool.

Craig

richies said...

I'm no expert, so I will just say that they are bright vibrant beautiful flowers.

An Arkies Musings

skywind said...

Oh, good beauty flowers. I think this should be the orchid flower. I guess it is. :-D

http://eyesinkaleidoscope.blogspot.com/
http://fymtyh.blogspot.com/

Maggie May said...

At first I thought it was a species of late flowering bulb that we have in England that grows easily & can stand a bit of neglect. It seems a bit fancier than ours though but I'm sure it is related to the species. Perhaps some one will be able to tell you what it is, as I'm not sure what the name is.

Lovely pictures.

Sandi McBride said...

What beautiful photos...I believe this is going to be a lily of some kind...though it does look a bit like Bird of Paradise...wonderful interview, David...it was so nice to see you being the interviewee for a change!
Sandi

Carolina said...

Okay, so the one with the darker tips is a Heliconia psittacorum I think.
(Trust me, I'm a garden designer ;-))

Tessa said...

Stunning photographs - as always. I've seen that variety often in Africa, but I've no idea what it is. So no help there - sorry!

Charles Gramlich said...

Dat's purty!

Eddie Bluelights said...

Hi David
Beautiful Blog-posts. (Here we go again!). My you are prodigious - if you were a composer you would be a Mozart I am sure.
By the way, as you suspected I have received a complaint from Gordon Brown and had to do another post. Best wishes

LET US STAY CONNECTED said...

I enjoyed your photographs immensely!

I shall be happy if you find time to visit my blog site @blogspot.com and fotosite @ http:
flickr.com/photos/cshyamal/.

Best wishes.

Marty said...

Great pics. The orange really stands out against the green. Sorry I can't help with identifying the plant, but a green thumb is not one of my talents.

Reasons to be Cheerful 1,2,3 said...

What a feast of colours! Thank you for posting them they are so beautiful.

Meandu said...

Just had to let you know that I loved these pictures. I enjoyed my visit here. Thank you.

VALKYRIEN said...

Magnificent pics of a wonderful flower! Some of them looks like paintings - because of the way you shot them! Just beautiful!

A Thousand Clapping Hands said...

You are so right, David - they do resemble Thai or Indian dancers...beautiful!
Catherine

fishing guy said...

David: What a neat set of photos showing off the neat flower.

Inkivääri said...

Extraordinary and beautiful flowers!

theArthurClan said...

You are making me long for warm weather and summer! Gorgeous photos.

Darla said...

My first thought was a type of lily? Very pretty whatever the name.

Tranquility said...

That is a gorgeous flower... and I have no idea what it is! It looks similar to something we saw growing in Arizona... but I don't know what that is called either!

Tracie said...

ha! i saw the eyes as well! LOL ;)
gorgeous pics!

Norm said...

what a lovely and beautiful Asian flowers. We have many like these in the Philippines.

cheshire wife said...

It looks far too exotic to grow here, in the cold and grey UK. The contrast of the orange flowers against the green foilage is quite striking.

Gail said...

I, too, enjoy taking picture of flowers, especially the ones that have grown in my garden. The colours and the intensity of them are breathtaking. I also took photos of flowering plants in Hawaii when I was there in 2007 as well.
The best part of photographing flowers is that they don't run around or become distracted while you're tryin' to set up the shot, like kids and dogs will do!

Judy said...

Or maybe the Indian and Thai dancers resemble the flowers? No matter what they are, they are lovely and colourful!

twobarkingdogs said...

Wonderful flowers! Thanks.

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Nice job on the flowers, David.

Cath said...

A beautiful flower and you are right - they do resemble dancers and are a great contrast against the green.

Alas I do not know them - although they have a look of honeysuckle (the blooms) but the leaves are more like lilies. Quite a mix!

joan said...

I have no idea what it is but enjoy the beauty of it!

Annie said...

Great photos David...

I can't believe that out of 30 comments, no-one knows the names...obviously none of your readers from the tropics have chimed in yet.

I would have said that the top flower was an IXORA

and the ones below would be some of the ginger family, although that second photo does look like a smaller strelitzia (or bird of paradise, as soemone did say)

Hope this might be of help...

I was going to say that arija might know but she isn't from the tropics...

might ask my sister (from yarra valley Melbourne)..she is a terrific internet librarian reference for me...but won't update her own blog...very naughty!


Annie (queensland)

Annie said...

Heliconia

or orange parrot heliconia

popped up on google when I googled strelitzia (images) on about the third page

and googled heliconia (images) too

Annie

ps Carolina did have the answer there I see!

ps Though I still say the first of your photos would have to be an IXORA

Luiz Santilli Jr said...

Hi David

Wonderful photos and very interesting flowers!
Great series my friend!

Luiz

Jazz said...

Lovely flowers, though I haven't the foggiest idea of what they might be.

Deb said...

Hi ~ All I know is that I love their lush, rich colors. Currently surrounded by white, white and white here in New England! Celebrate the colors!

Robynn's Ravings said...

"With a rebel yell, they cried more! more! more!"

LOVE the color - keep it comin'! Simply lovely!

citizen of the world said...

One of the things I love about traveling is the rich variety offlora aorund the world. Those are beautiful.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Thank you for visitng my blog.I hope you come by again. Sheila (Quintessential Magpie) is a wonderful person and a talented writer.

Beautiful flowers! Malaysia has so many wonderful tropical blooms.

Hiro C. said...

Carolina and annie are right, those are Heliconias. Theses plants belong to the ginger family. I have a lot of different strains of them in my garden... hehe, I'm a lucky islander !

Muthering Heights said...

Your photos are beautiful!

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

Well, I'm glad you got some answers, I was going to a hazard a guess and say either members of the ginger family, or perhaps the strelitzia and or canna family.

msdewberry said...

One thing that is cool is that I get to see flowers I would not otherwise get to see here. I love your flowers.

guild-rez said...

Wonderful pictures and vibrant colours!
Thank you for sharing.

guild-rez said...

Wonderful pictures and vibrant colours!
Thank you for sharing.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

David, these are simply beautiful pictures. I was trying recently to get a foreground shot like this of a holly tree. I couldn't do it!

CJ xx

Laerte Pupo said...

Beautiful photos and nice color flowers.

Daryl said...

They look like a version or relative to Birds of Paradise ... a showy tall stalked flower ...

Anonymous said...

My mum always told me they were called bird of paradise but somewhere along the way my brain picked up on it being called halyconia or something like that. So I'm not quite sure what its called.

I'm Malaysian by the way and we have loads of these all over the place. I have to admit I never realized how exotic or beautiful they looked til now. I guess at times you have to step back and really look at the beauty around.

Thanks. You kinda made my day.

rasp said...

I am a Malaysian and would just like to confirmed that the flowers is indeed heliconias...but the 1st picture of the orange flower is ixora coccinea also known as Jungle Geranium :D

All your pictures are simply beautiful!

Alan said...

Thanks for the article, the pictures are absolutely amazing. It seems to me that orange is an underused color in bouquets, I might have to experiment a little to see what works.

- shop flowers