Auckland – West                          Mainly West of Queen Street – seen through my lens

July 25, 2010

The Bench

Filed under: Black and White,Oratia — paul @ 7:23 am
The Bench

The Bench

This bench with its elaborate cast-iron decorations is found in the Oratia Cemetery on West Coast Road. Desaturation is a wonderful rust remover!

For more black and white images check out Dragonstar’s Weekend in Black and White.

June 3, 2010

The Monarch

Filed under: Flowers,Insects,Oratia — paul @ 7:44 am
The Monarch

The Monarch

I was driving along West Coast Road, Oratia, last Sunday, when I saw the blossoms of a tetrapanax plant bathed in sunshine and contrasting sharply with the dark bush. When I stopped to take a shot or two, I found to my delight that a monarch butterfly was gorging herself on the nectar, hanging upside down above me and presenting her best side against the blue sky.

Monarchs (danaus plexippus) are the most common butterflies in NZ, and in Auckland they are around on most days that are reasonably warm, although the numbers are much smaller in winter. Where we live now, there are very few monarchs throughout the year.

There is a butterfly tagging project going on, to find out more about the movements of these butterflies within New Zealand.

Some years ago, Herta raised numerous monarchs, and I got to help and shoot them. Some images are here, and here, and here.

May 29, 2010

Autumn: Vineyard

Filed under: Oratia,Seasons — paul @ 7:50 am
Artisan Vineyard, Oratia

Artisan Vineyard, Oratia

The grape harvest is long over, but the vineyard is still parading beautiful autumn colour before winter comes.

This is Artisan vineyard in Parrs Cross Road. We have seen these vines before the harvest.

May 26, 2010

Painted Boxes: The Eel

Filed under: Art,Oratia,Painted Boxes — paul @ 8:16 am
Painted Boxes: The Eel

Painted Boxes: The Eel

(Wednesday is for painted boxes.)

This transformer stands on West Coast Road, at the entrance to Parrs Park (map). A giant eel winds snake-like around the box.

Eels are a traditional food source of the Maori and play an important role in their culture. Much detailed knowledge and skill went into the construction of traps and weirs to catch them. See also the eel trap in Olympic Park, shown earlier.

I do not know the name of the artist. (Added 5/12/2014: This is by Warren Pohatu, titled “Tuna” (=Eel).

Check out all painted boxes so far.

April 21, 2010

Painted Boxes: Miro Orchard

Filed under: Art,Oratia,Painted Boxes — paul @ 7:39 am
Painted Boxes: Miro Orchard

Painted Boxes: Miro Orchard

Once upon a time — in the seventies we used to make regular trips from Auckland’s Eastern Suburbs to Henderson to purchase fresh fruit by the bagful. Meanwhile, many of those orchards have vanished, replaced in many cases by residential dwellings. This transformer harks back to that era, with its offer of crates of apples from Miro Orchard, one of the places we used to frequent. The box is found on Parrs Cross Road in Oratia (map), opposite of the Artisan Vineyard.

The artist is Robin Binsley.

Painted Boxes: Miro Orchard

Painted Boxes: Miro Orchard

March 11, 2010

Vineyard – Ready for Harvest

Filed under: Fruit,Oratia,Seasons — paul @ 8:23 am
Vineyard - Ready for Harvest

Vineyard - Ready for Harvest

The last rays of the evening sun brush over the rows of grapevines shrouded in bird netting. The grape harvest has begun already in the region, and the birds would love to help…

Artisan Wines at 99 Parrs Cross Road, Oratia, Waitakere.

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