Dacawi: Perennials Keeping Afloat Baguios Flower City Status (2nd of two parts)

Posted: March 14, 2015 at 6:44 am


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DRIVING around - from Burnham Park to Campo Sioco, to Military Cut-off, to Country Club Road and down to Leonard Wood Rd -, one finds valid the advocacy of former city mayor Braulio Yaranon for the propagation of bougainvilla here.

The vine is sturdy, hardly needing water and care, so unlike sensitive and fleeting annuals, even while some tend to grow slowly and may take years to bear bracts and flowers.

While in that personal search for bougainvillas, I began to take notice of the coral tree, the ubiquitous hibiscus and even the red bottle brush that my old man, thanks to his superiors, learned to identify by its scientific name: callistemon.

The coral tree, together with the golden bush, is a more recent introduction here. Preceding both were the African tulip, the eraser tree, together with the several species of now towering eucalyptus that then mayor Alfonso Tabora had lined up around the Burnham Park.

While producing whitish-red flowers that dangle like earrings in succession,the coral tree got its name from its furrowed bark resembling corals. The golden bush, now meekly producing tiny blue flowers and yellow fruits, was named for its bright greenish-yellow leaves.

Perhaps the only native perennial in bloom year-round, the tough morning glory vine sheds lavender, bell-like flowers now dotting the fences of untended lawns of vacation homes along South Drive until Ilusorio Drive, towards Pacdal Circle and Outlook Drive.

A bane to young trees and shrubs choked by its tentacles, the vine has merited several tips on How to Kill A Morning Glory Vine on the internet. One proclaims the effectiveness of pouring hot water into its roots. The vine had survived many wars among Baguio boys of old who, long before the entry of transformers pulverizing each other on line, would chop the vine into pieces as projectiles for their weapon of choice that the late Baguio boy and journalist Peppot Ilagan called PAL-S-11-T, otherwise known as slingshot.

The summer explosion of perennials will linger until we prepare to send our kids and grandkids back to school. The quiet, and therefore sometimes unnoticed display, is also harmless compared to the instant, fleeting, expensive and polluting evening fireworks display that caps the annual Baguio Flower Festival.

Theres still time to see the remaining lavender jacaranda bells clinging to the trees. Perhaps their sight can evoke a higher meaning similar to what spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle observed to open his book, A New Earth:

Earth, 114 million years ago, one morning just after sunrise: The first flower ever to appea on the planet opens up to receive the rays of the sun. Prior to this momentous event, that heralds an evolutionary transformation in the life of plants, the planet had already been covered in vegetation for millions of years. The first flower probably did not survive for long, and flowers must have remained rare and isolated phenomena, since conditions were most likely not yet favorable for a widespread flowering to occur. One day, however, a critical threshold was reached, and suddenly there would have been an explosion of color and scent all over the planet if a perceiving consciousness had been there to witness it.

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Dacawi: Perennials Keeping Afloat Baguios Flower City Status (2nd of two parts)

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Written by simmons |

March 14th, 2015 at 6:44 am

Posted in Eckhart Tolle