We so often think of the natural world as being something that appears random, asymmetric, organic.
When I came across these gum logs, I immediately imagined the woodsman had been having great fun making patterns with his router.
But I am told that these wonderful maze-like designs have been created by beetle larvae tunnelling beneath the bark.
What wonderful designs for quilting, or cut-away applique!!
Meanwhile, these immature Norfolk pines display that intrigueing five point star pattern around the central trunk. They really are so beautiful and symmetrical at this stage.
Louise Menadue, who lived on Norfolk Island for many years, was fascinated and inspired by these stars, and wrote a lovely children's story called "Norfolk Stars." Louise was an incredibly creative lady, a great gardener and floral artist, needleworker, poet and writer. She appreciated and valued the people and the world around her....something I like to call "savouring"...and a quality I would love to emulate.
Back to the pines. As they mature, and move on through their lifespan, which can be hundreds of years in the right environment, weathering and age may cause their trunks to become become knobbly, their branches irregular, and some of them may actually branch out into two or three trunks if there has been some damage to the crown. Instead of looking like schoolgirls in a row, each one develops its own unique and individual character!
A bit like us humans, don't you think?