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Ants and flowers

Just a little update on the qumqat tree. As you can see, it is now in full flower, I’ve never seen it with so many flowers!



I can’t help thinking that the ants have something to do with it… They have moved house though – their original nest has broken up/been abandoned:






And now they are living in another one not far away...

The flowering of prosperity

Qumqats, or kumquats, are used during Chinese New Year as a symbol of prosperity: apparently the word sounds something like "gold" in Cantonese, and the bright orange colour resembles gold (incidentally, this is a typical example of so-called "imitative" or "sympathetic" magic: i.e. something is believed to affect other processes in the world due to its plastic properties, another example would be the phallic-shaped asparagus that are believed to be aphrodisiac).

Anyway, I have a kumquat tree which I bought for RM12 about three years ago: it never amounted to much until I transplanted it from the pot to the ground, and now it's flourishing well and measures about a metre high.

Here are photos demonstrating the different stages of the flowering and development into fruit.

The bud...


which then develops into a flower - here you can also see a caterpillar (sneakily disguised as a bird dropping) which will gobble down much of your leafs unless you remove it...
Continue reading "The flowering of prosperity"
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