Mimosa pudica

We loved finding this plant by the roadside when we were kids, because despite it being called ‘touch-me-not’, I assure you we did precisely the opposite. Of course we all know that flowers bloom and fruits grow and such, but to see a plant actually close its leaves in front of your eyes in a…

European Holly (Ilex aquifolium)

It’s funny how holly has become a universal symbol of winter and Christmas across much of the world- even in Singapore, where we don’t even have holly, or a winter for that matter. We’re all familiar with the typical getup: glossy dark green leaves, framing a cluster of perfectly round, bright red berries (well, technically,…

Dwarf Fothergilla (Fothergilla gardenii)

Perhaps this wasn’t my favourite type of flower in the spring, it looking somewhat like a bottlebrush tipped with algae, but I loved the autumn colours of the dwarf witch alder, or dwarf fothergilla (Fothergilla gardenii) that they’d planted all along the street. Some were arguably a little messy in the spring, with their bare…

Eastern Redbud and Whitebud (Cercis canadensis)

Creativity isn’t always the botanist’s strong suit- doesn’t take much to guess why the eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis) and eastern whitebud (Cercis canadensis var. alba) were so named. They’re very popular ornamental trees on the east coast of the United States, where their cute little buds and flowers emerge in the spring, growing directly on…

Sweet Leaf (Sauropus androgynus)

I was on the tail of a butterfly for a photo, but it flew away, and now I’m sad that I can’t remember what it looks like in sufficiently explicit detail to identify it. On the bright side, I did end up finding a couple of these growing amongst the rusted rails, which were a…

Yellow Ashoka (Saraca thaipingensis)

I’m ashamed to say that I never noticed this yellow saraca, or yellow ashoka (Saraca thaipingensis), till it bloomed recently. You’d think photographing plants for so long would have made me immune to strange looks, but no. Two hurried snaps were all I got (to the sir staring at me the whole time, no you…