Monday, September 18, 2006

Signs of Spring

It’s Spring in the Southern Hemisphere, and one of the surest signs of it in New Zealand is the appearance of koru, or unfolding tree fern fronds, produced by ponga, also known as the silver fern. Koru are a common element in Maori art, as well as Pakeha art, and a stylised version is depicted on the tail of Air New Zealand jets. The silver fern is one of New Zealand’s national emblems, used on the uniforms of national sport teams, t-shirts for tourists and company logos. The silver fern is a kind of visual shorthand for New Zealand and its people.

I took this photo this morning in the bush behind our house, where there are many silver ferns to choose from. The easy accessibility of the bush (as well as the seashore) is one of the best things about
New Zealand.

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