Large monitor lizard came a-visiting in August 2013!

Who’s there?
Monitor who?
Monitor lizard… make way, I’m coming through!

What a wonderful sighting outside our backyard – a monitor lizard came a-visiting! Not a tiny-weeny one like the Garden fence lizard but a large and fat fella.

Close-up of a 5-ft long monitor lizard (Varanus bengalensis), Aug 10 2013

Having our afternoon siesta in the quiet of the afternoon a few days ago, we were suddenly jolted by the thunderous and continuous barking by our darling pet dog, Maxi. I jumped up, fully awake when my beloved John, the first to check the cause of the din, woke me up to inform that a monitor lizard was just outside our backyard gate.

Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’ with vibrant technicolor foliage

Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’ (Triostar Ginger, Triostar/Tricolor Stromanthe, Never-never Plant)

Stromanthe sanguinea 'Triostar' (Never-never Plant, Triostar Ginger, Triostar/Tricolor Stromanthe), shot June 7 2013One of the most dramatic of foliage plants, Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’, also known as ‘Tricolor’, is certainly not to be missed in your garden collection. It is a hot favourite amongst foliage lovers worldwide because of its dazzling colours.

We brought home a lovely pot recently and are absolutely fascinated with its very colourful variegated leaves. Purchased it for RM10, relatively cheap as we could have sub-divided into a few more pots had we desired.

May-June 2013: happily increasing our garden collection

One of the many rewards of having our own home garden is going on a shopping spree. Not to malls but happily to garden centers, spending many hours during May to June, searching and finding some jewels to increase our tropical garden collection. Of course, bought only those within our budget, yet at the same time couldn’t help drooling over those that were overwhelmingly attractive but too expensive!

Some newly added plants in May 2013
Some new plants for our tropical garden in May :
Clockwise from top: Gardenia jasminoides Tabernaemontana divaricata cv. Flore Pleno (Crepe Gardenia, Crepe Jasmine), Stomanthe sanguinea ‘Tricolor’, Dwarf Tabernaemontana divaricata (Pinwheel Flower, Milk Flower), Excoecaria cochinchinensis (Chinese Croton, Blindness Tree), Adiantum tenerum (Fan Maidenhair Fern) and Calathea lancifolia (Rattlesnake Plant).


Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopaceus) with loud territorial call!

Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopaceus),Close-up of male Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopaceus) feasting on fruits of our Manila/Christmas Palm, June 15 2013 these large birds have been residing on large trees in our neighbourhood for many many years, maybe a couple of decades! Mostly seen perched on a very tall and aged Norfolk Pine tree, growing in someone’s compound, six doors away from our home.

We’re absolutely thrilled to know its identity finally. A big thank you to Chan Kwee Peng, an active member of ‘My Nice Garden Chat’ on Facebook, who helped ID’ed it.

Asian Koel …what a lovely name, and the second word ‘Koel’ matches beautifully with its loud echoing territorial call ‘ko-eeul’! Probably that’s how its common name came about.

Check out the male and female Asian Koel’s call/sound at YouTube, can be quite compelling…!!

Yay… Cardwell Lily bloomed again during the Easter Season!

How blessed to witness the gradual sprouting of the inflorescence of our Proiphys amboinensis (Cardwell Lily), starting from April 27th! Initially, we assumed that a new leaf was emerging, a little doubtful though as the petiole was strangely white instead of light green. Blooming sequence of our Proiphys amboinensis (Cardwell Lily, Northern Christmas Lily) - Apr-May 2013Could it be a flowering spike?

Praise God, our excitement was confirmed the next day when the tiny growth gained momentum and sprang forth to display its tiny cluster of flower buds.

Simply marvelous! We weren’t at all surprised that the Cardwell Lilly chose to bloom again during the Easter Season. This is the third time that it rewarded us big time for our tender loving care, at two-year intervals.

And, all three flowering occasions were during the Easter Season. Apparently, these plants love the Easter Season as much as we do, celebrating Jesus Christ’s resurrection with a bouquet of fabulous pure white flowers and giving us much joy!