Linda Grashoff's Photography Adventures

On the Way Home from Farmers Market—Going, Going, Gone


March 14, 2016

Cutting through Selby Gardens’ administration-building parking lot last Saturday, I paused to admire and photograph some spent flowers on the pavement. Eventually I looked up to see some flowers still on the tree. Botanist-husband David tells me this is a Bombax ceiba, also called the kapok or cotton tree. “It’s a large tropical drought-deciduous tree that flowers shortly before leafing out with the return of the rainy season,” he says. From a University of Florida web page I learned that although this tree is often called a kapok tree because of the cottony fibers of the fruit, the true kapok tree—the one whose fibers were once used in life jackets—is not this one but Ceiba pentandra. I’ve arranged my photographs below in descending order of the flowers’ age.

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9 responses

  1. Anatomy of a murder

    Like

    March 14, 2016 at 6:34 AM

    • If you like . . .

      Like

      March 14, 2016 at 10:02 AM

    • Thinking more about what you said, I think I’d rather see it as illustration of life extension. The seeds might not mature while the flowers are on the tree, so their falling to the ground could be followed by the maturation of the seeds. I don’t know who eats the mature seeds and later, um, plants them in the soil—maybe squirrels like the one I photographed a few weeks ago. And after the seeds are planted, the tree has no more need for the flowers, so they can become grungy (the way I like them best) and eventually recycle themselves into soil that can support more plant life. But as I said earlier today, “if you like.” You are welcome to see my photographs any way you wish. I just love that you keep looking at them.

      Like

      March 14, 2016 at 4:23 PM

  2. Wow! Impressive.

    Like

    March 14, 2016 at 7:35 AM

    • Cool tree, eh? My favorite flowers are the ones all grungy.

      Like

      March 14, 2016 at 10:01 AM

  3. they are so beautiful 🙂

    Like

    March 15, 2016 at 5:41 AM

    • Yes, Joshi, the red flowers are beautiful on or off the tree. I like best the ones that are smashed on the pavement and have lost most of their color.

      Like

      March 15, 2016 at 12:52 PM

  4. Terrific! And it’s always nice to learn a little botany on the way.

    Like

    March 20, 2016 at 10:15 PM

    • Thanks, Lynn. Your comment about botany goes for me, too. I almost never know this stuff when I take the photos and only learn about it after asking my husband and/or going online later.

      Like

      March 21, 2016 at 10:04 AM

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