The intriguing flowers of the kowhai tree are theme in this free online jigsaw puzzle featured by New Zealand vacations in West Auckland.
Between August and September the blossoming kowhai tree is herald to the spring season. At the fringes of the Waitakere Ranges heavily filled trees with yellow to golden yellow blossoms are bright yellow dots among the green. With its beautiful dress it became a favourite to humans and birds.
Native birds like the tui bird, New Zealand wood pigeon, and bellbird rival about the sugar rich nectar. In traditional Maori medicine bark and ashes of the tree found use.
Today the tree is better known for its artistic inspiration it gives to jewellers and painters as well as to weavers. More widely known is the artistic use of the blossoms form by traditional and contemporary artists who are inspired by this eye-catching blossoms. Maori use kowhai stylized patterns to decorate carvings and weaving work, but also as solitaires in bone carvings. Contemporary jewellers use materials such as silver to give elegant stylized interpretations In stylized form the blossoms are theme of traditional and contemporary artworks.
The West Auckland painter Dean Buchanan for example uses vibrant colours in kaleidoscopic style to express his perception of the flowering tree. Traditional bone carver found at the Bone Art Place use their craft to make kowhai pendants. The two online shops promoting New Zealand gifts 'Shop New Zealand' and 'Product of New Zealand' stock a selection of traditional and contemporary pendants as well as some series of skincare products using the leaves or an extract of the kowhai.
The tree is small spreading and reaches a height of up to 12m. The trunk measures in a fully grown tree about 60 cm in diameter. Conspicuous to the tree are the leaves that follow the blossoming. One leave shows 10 to 20 pairs of oval shaped leaflets on either side of the leave stem. This makes it easily recognizable.
Encountered flora on a bush walk....