20 August 2007

More views of that casuarina

The first view was one that I posted a while ago, titled A deformed she-oak by the highway

I'm clueless as to the why of this. These pictures are taken in natural light, though I broke off the whole tree and brought it home to plonk in my forest and take these pictures. Otherwise, it was a spindle on the highway verge. It is less than two metres tall.

3 comments:

drtjhawkeswood said...

dear anna

my first impression was that I thought this was from another planet! some kind of alien!

however, i think this plant has been bitten by a bug (perhaps a wasp) which has introduced a virus or a growth hormone which has affected its development

dr trevor j hawkeswood

Anonymous said...

it looks like fasciation, wikepedia has a good description

anna tambour said...

Thank you. I didn't know this, but you are certainly right. Not only that but casuarinas have a propensity to fasciate. "The only plants on which I have observed consistent fasciation are Casuarinas and roses," says "tabbysmum" on a "Fasciation of plants" thread in ABC Online Forum. There is much written about fasciation of casuarinas, in many places, including India. The National Trust of Australia's Campsie Remnant and Nanny Goat Hill Bushland Management Report 2007-2008 treats this gorgeous phenomenon with the abhorrence of a lawn lover to an errant flower. Or perhaps the policy is made by Daleks. Instructions: "Continue to cut off fasciation on Casuarinas."

Yet Pierre Binggeli's delightful, informative "Fasciation" tells of when fasciation fascinated, and even had a wonderfully evocative title for the study of it. "Fasciation," he writes, "is only one of the numerous variations, often exhibited in the form of completely abnormal structures, which may be observed in plants. Such abnormal forms of organs were widely studied during the 19th Century and the early part of the 20th Century and the subject was known as teratology (the science of wonders or monsters)."So many thanks, Anonymous, for solving a mystery and opening many more doors to curiosities.