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著作權:Loot Eksteen (loot) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5551 W: 721 N: 4164] (11276)
相機:Canon EOS 350D, Sigma 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 HZ DG Macro, Digital ISO 100, UV 62mm Kenko
Exposure:f/11, 1/250 seconds
More Photo Info:[view]
Photo Version:Original Version
Theme(s):Wild Flowers, Flowers, plants and fungi of Southern Africa, Wildflowers of the World, Flower Power, RARE or SIGNIFICANT contributions to TN 1, A study in Botany (plants) 1, Dedications at Trek Nature, uMkhuze Game Reserve 1, My Dedications ;o) [view contributor(s)]
提交日期:2006-04-04 15:24
Favorites:1 [view]
[Note Guidelines] 攝影師備註
Zulu-giant - Stapelia gigantea

I dedicate this beautiful flower to my lovely wife, Anna, whilst celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary today. She thoroughly surprised me with a gift weekend in the uMkhuze Game Reserve. This photo was taken at the parking area that leads towards the 1st observation platform at the Nsumo Pan.

Visiting a game park is a bit like playing Russian roulette. You never know when the bad luck will strike. Unfortunately it happened this weekend as apparently the animals decided to play an Aprils fool joke on us and they arranged a stay-away for the weekend. The end result was that Sunday morning we decided to move over to the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, my regular hunting ground, where we had much better luck. I will post some of those shots during the next week or so.

Taxonomic Classification

Spermatophyta (seed plants),
DIVISION: Magnoliophyta (flowering plants),
CLASS: Magnoliopsida (dicotyledons),
ORDER: Gentianales (plants with gamopetalous flowers),
FAMILY: Asclepiadaceae (milkweed family).

Stapelia gigantea is commonly called the Zulu-giant, giant toad plant, or carrion-flower. Carrion-flower suits best; the flower is often smelled long before it is noticed as it gives off a pestilent smell that attracts flies in search of carrion. As they buzz from flower to flower, flies collect pollen and transport it to the next plant, thereby ensuring the successful pollination of this species. The flowers putrid smell and hairy, leathery texture mimic the rotting flesh of a dead animal. The extremely large, starfish-shaped flowers are pale yellow with reddish stripes.

Stapelias are succulents that resembles cactus. The branches are X-shaped in cross-section and determinate, ceasing growth when about 4 to 5 inches in length. The inflorescence arises near the base of a branch between arms of the X. The inflorescence has two buds with scale-like leaves at the base of the petioles. When the flower opens, the second bud is aborted.

The flower (23cm across) has two distinct whorls; the inferior ovary (set below the corolla) is surrounded by the calyx (sepals). The corolla has five lobes and is covered with trichomes that resemble fine hairs. The tissue is thick and similar in appearance and texture to skin of a mammal. Actually, it reminds one of the skin of a young pig. The raised dark areas near the centre (staminodes?) appear to mimic flies.

Surprisingly, the aroma and texture fools not only flies and humans, but animals such as cats too. One observation in cultivation has it that a garden cat circled the Stapelia with hackles raised. When the spent corolla dropped to the ground, the kindly cat attempted to bury the poor dead thing!

Common plants native to the deserts and dryer regions of Southern Africa to Zambia.

Source: "Field Guide to the Wild Flowers of Southern Africa" by Braam van Wyk & Sasa Malan, Struik Publishers.

Post Processing was done with Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0.

hummingbird24, marjan, Janice, Luc, scottevers7, saguzar, jeanpaul, AndyB, SunToucher, peter_stoeckl, coasties, dantor, firelord, gaz, Dyker, Aaltjie, Miss_Piggy, Rehanna, betsie has marked this note useful
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主題Thread Starter 訊息 最新的訊息
To Dyker: Smootcherloot 1 01-10 01:20
To chiliu: Thank youloot 1 04-06 08:21
To EOSF1: Thank youloot 1 04-05 21:25
To SunToucher: Thank youloot 1 04-05 21:05
To ellis49: Thank youloot 1 04-05 20:35
To AndyB: Thank youloot 1 04-05 05:31
To manyee: Thank youloot 1 04-05 05:17
To Luc: Thank youloot 2 04-04 22:53
To saguzar: Thank youloot 1 04-04 20:41
To Janice: Thank youloot 1 04-04 16:28
To hummingbird24: Thank youloot 1 04-04 16:06
To wuta: Thank youloot 1 04-04 16:02

Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • wuta Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 855 W: 2 N: 617] (2142)
  • [2006-04-04 15:35]
  • [+]

Hello loot and Anna, both most congratulated with your dayday day, this flower I have never seen he am very beautiful, also leuke context with those cactuses, groeten Teunie,

Hi Loot,
wow, this is marvelous, such a gigantic and interesting flower, I never have seen this in real, only on TV or photos. So beautiful shot, thank you very much for sharing
Sabine - wishnugaruda

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2006-04-04 16:18]
  • [+]

Congratulations to you both, Loot and Anna, on your 25th Wedding Anniversary. And what a giant flower to celebrate it with! Not the sort of flower you'ld want in a wedding bouquet:))

But good shot Loot; it is an interesting plant to see. The pattern and hairs stand out well, "thick and similar in appearance and texture to skin of a mammal!" I hope my skin doesn't look like that:( Interesting scent too.

Thanks for sharing

Hi Loot,
This is a new one to me. The detail looks excellent. You can almost feel the texture in this. Very interesting!

Hi Loot,
Strange and new flower for me. excellent composition; good colours and illumination, despite the intense solar light.
Congratulations for your 25th anniversary.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1836 W: 303 N: 4300] (14767)
  • [2006-04-04 20:41]
  • [+]

First, congratulations for your wedding anniversary, Anna and Loot.
Personnaly I think that you played Russian roulette 25 years ago and that you both won.

This is a huge flower, maybe the biggest one I have seen until now.
Looking at it on my screen, I wonder if I would have try to shoot a close-up of the center. These circular or spiral lines intrigue me.

A very interesting post.
Thank you.

Congratulations again, Loot and Anna, on your 25th anniversary!
What a magnificent and fascinating flower, not to mention gigantic.
An excellent shot with fantastic POV showing the whole open flower. Impressive sharpness showing off the "hairs" on the edge of the petals, and the intricate fine line designs on the petals themselves. Beautiful colors and light.
I am with Luc on this : I am mesmerized by the lines radiating from the center of the flower into an almost moir-like pattern.
A most fitting tribute. : )

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2006-04-05 3:56]
  • [+]

Hello Loot,
Many congratulations to you and Anna on your 25 years together.
The flower is very unusual,I've never seen anything like it before.
The light looks very strong but you've handled that very well indeed.
Excellent detail and very good dof.
Great shot and note.


Bonsoir Loot
Superbe prise de vue de cette magnifique fleur 彋oil嶪. Les details sont clairs les couleurs magnifiques, tr鋊 belle composition
Bravo et merci ....JP

Hi Loot, Great colors, Perfect details everything is crisp, Perfect pOV, TFS Kyle

Hello Loot,

Congratulations to you and your wife on your 25th anniversary!

How can a flower this impressive looking smell as badly as you describe?

It almost resembles a beached starfish...

Wonderful details, colors, exposure and notes.

Thank you for sharing, and all the best for the next 25 years! ;-)

Hi Loot,
Congratulations to you both, Loot and Anna, on your 25th Wedding Anniversary. For so long marriage, you really need a giant flower for celebrating;-)
A lovely flower you have capture, the details are very good.
Good POV and compostion.
Great work.

Hi Loot,
Congratulations to you both. I think I know the smell of this flower. My dad has a lot of cacti and one flowers simular to this flower. I can stil remember the smell as I am writing this.

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2006-04-05 20:39]
  • [+]

Congrats for the anniversary ! Very beautiful plant, well photographed. A very good result ! Thanks.


Hello Anna and Loot,
Congradulations to your 25th Wedding Anniversary!
Excellent capture of this interesting flower,
very good details and well composition.
Thanks for sharing!

Hi Loot,
very impressive picture of a most unusual blossom.
Delightful colours, and details very crisp and clear.
Excellent contribution!
Thank you, best regards,

Hi Loot

Congratulations to you and Anna on your 25th wedding anniversary. Sounds like you have a very special lady. Surprises are fun! A lovely shot. Excellent exposure and nice light showing perfect sharp detail and great shapes and textures. :-)

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2006-04-08 8:26]

Hello Loot,
Happy Anniversary!
This reminds me of a sea star. Woderful details nice colors and great POV.
A well composed photo.

Loot, you must have an interesting sense of humour;
""[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note:
I dedicate this beautiful flower to my lovely wife ""...

The Zulu-giant - Stapelia gigantea - is generally referred to as the Carrion Plant. I had one that bloomed in our atrium when I worked in Saudi Arabia. We grew it from a small cutting that we got in the Cayman Islands. I can attest that it comes by its "plain name" rather honestly!!!

The only thing that showed up in the atrium as an unexpected guest was a snake, no cats were sighted.



  • Great 
  • Dyker Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 136 W: 0 N: 57] (170)
  • [2007-01-09 9:41]
  • [+]

Hello Loot
Hehehe - what a stinker. I hope you gave your wife a long smootch after this to convince her that it was worth putting up with you for 25 years. You took a lovely photo of the flower and it is showing a good part of the plant as well. Very nice composition.

Dear Loot
I am not used to your portfolio having lots of plants, but is indeed a glorious and fascinating flower, and cannot go unnoticed. I hope you still feel the same about your Mrs. Piggy, sergeant major than the day you dedicated this Zulu-giant - Stapelia gigantea to her. This is a marvelous gesture to dedicate this unusual image to someone special. Although this is one of your older postings, the appreciation for sharing it is much appreciated.
Warmest regards

Hallo Loot
At the time you dedicated this Stapelia gigantea to me, I was not a part of Trek Nature. I cannot believe this photo was taken almost 2 years ago and it brought back beautiful memories of our 25th wedding anniversary we celebrated in the Mkuze game reserve. It is not so long, then we will be leaving for our 27th wedding anniversary to spent and appreciate a few days in nature.
When you showed me this flower, I was really amazed by the size of it. It was the first time I can remember that I saw such a gigantic and interesting flower. An excellent shot with fantastic point of view showing the whole open flower. Impressive sharpness showing off the "hairs" on the edge of the petals, and the complicated fine line designs on the petals themselves. Beautiful colours and light. Like always stunning photography from your hand.

how did i miss this wonderful pic, TFS Ori

Hello Loot

Wat 'n pragtige blom. Dit ruik natuurlik net nie so goed as wat dit lyk nie, maar dit weet jy uiteraard aangesien jy so naby daaraan was. Verder is dit ook 'n baie roerende toewyding aan Anna. Ek sien sommige mense het kritiek gelewer omdat dit dan kwansuis 'n stink blom is wat jy aan Anna opgedra het, maar ek sien Anna self het dit waardeer en dit is al wat saak maak.

'n Puik foto van die blom wat al die haartjies, kleure en fyn besonderhede baie duidelik toon.


'n Baie mooi foto, maar 'n baie stink blom!! Jy het omtrent elke detail en haartjie van hierdie mooi blom vasgevang. Mooi foto Loot

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