By EcoShutterBug


After 23 attempts, I promised all Blippers, my weekly online Affinity focus group, my wife, and my son’s dog that I would never ever photograph the Dunedin Botanic Garden’s propagation centre façade again (Lattice work #23). Here then is attempt #24.

At least today was different. I tried to get in close with an ultrawide angle lens (10mm) to capture the tangle of the native Clematis vine that is scrambling up a stainless-steel wire lattice which is screwed to a wooden trellis.

The ultrawide lens surprised me by also framing some iconic New Zealand “Lancewoods” towering in the left top corner of the photograph, even though they are planted a few metres away from the wall.  It has been a heavy overcast day, so getting up close to the wood textures, wires, and plant tangle seemed to be the best chance to match the monochrome theme of today’s W-I-D-E on Wednesday Challenge.
I’ve called the photograph ‘Scramble’ to reflect the intense urgency of forest plants to beat their competitors to the top.  Whichever plant can get its solar panels (their leaves) highest gets the most sun.  Climbers can invest more of their energy and nutrients into stretching up further and faster by leaning on their hosts for support (in this case the kindly gardeners from Dunedin Botanic Garden who provided a climbing wall).  Free-standing forest trees are forced to build their own strength more slowly by laying down cellulose to make trunks and branches – their ‘scaffolding’ for holding their own leaves high.

I could also have called the image “Tangle” to reflect the way the climbers are getting a grip and lift by winding around each other as well as the trellis and wire lattice. All is fair, including strangulation, in evolutionary laws of the jungle.

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