Super Scientist

Newton London

The great English physicist and mathematician Sir Isaac Newton died on this day 1726 – in the modern calendar anyway. The inaccurate Julian calendar used in Britain at that time took the date to be 20 March.

Newton had a list of achievements to make any scientist green with envy. He discovered that white light is made up of the colours in the rainbow, pretty well invented the mathematics of differential calculus all by himself, and discovered the laws of motion governing everything from falling apples to the movements of stars and planets.

The statue of Newton above is by Eduardo Paolozzi and stands outside the British Library in London. It depicts Newton as a sort of robo-scientist, with deliberate overtones of Blake’s depiction of The Ancient of Days.

Starry Night

Van Gogh Cafe Arles 1

Today is the birthday of Vincent van Gogh, who was born on 30 March 1853. Last time we were in France, we stayed in Arles where Vincent lived for several years and produced about 300 paintings, mostly of local scenes. One of his iconic paintings is the Yellow Café, or to give it its full title “The Café Terrace on the Place du Forum, Arles, at Night”. Needless to say, the cafes do look best on a (not so) starry night.

Van Gogh Cafe Arles 2

Looking Seedy


We always like the Zamias in Perth’s Bold Park. They look like palm trees, but are actually primitive cycads whose ancestors were nibbled by dinosaurs. At present you can see a splash of orange/red colour at the base of the leaves on some of the Zamias. That’s the brightly coloured seeds, spilling out of the huge seed cones.

Zamia Seeds

A Bouquet of Banksias

Acorn Banksia

We went for a walk through the bushland in Bold Park, Perth recently. It is autumn here, so there weren’t such a lot of wildflowers. However the Banksia trees were looking very impressive. The Acorn Banksia above is in full bloom at present, and there are also flowers on the Menzies (aka Firewood) Banksia below.

Menzies Banksia

The Candle Banksia has almost finished flowering, but there are still a few scattered flowers like the one below.

Candle Banksia