Leaf of the Day: Frangipani Sketches

My last post from Florida for a while and I am currently sitting in the departures lounge at Orlando airport surrounded by many many children, who all seem to have sprouted black ears and pink princess frocks.
I made these two sketches last week on my last visit to Leu Gardens where they have many Frangipani trees dotted around. I am most attracted to their shape, the limbs of the tree form rhythmic patterns as they grow and the leaves, bright new green, shoot from the very tips of the branches, feathery and delightful. There are some now in bloom and this was my first experience of the heady delights of the Frangipani perfume. The flowers are at their most fragrant at night and the name Frangipani is sometimes attributed to an Italian, Marquis Frangipani who made perfume from them, but although smelling lovely (a bit too sweet to my own taste) they do not have any nectar. The poor Sphinx moth who is programmed to respond to this scent, doggedly goes from flower to flower trying to find the nectar that the delicious aroma promises. Endlessly disappointed he carries on in hope, inadvertently transferring pollen from flower to flower. Quite a little minx this Frangipani!

The first sketch was made as I was walking round. I liked the new shoots so bright against the darker green background of shaded trees. I came back later to expand a little on the first sketch. Its a nice spot to sit, with a handy bench and a whole gang of friendly lizards. I will no doubt return to draw from here again…but for now its goodbye to Florida..my flight is boarding..

Frangipani Sketches