Thursday, March 31, 2011

Phillip Island sea grapes plump with air

This past summer was exceptionally mild, with no scorching hot days. Consequently, the sea grapes growing on the rocky reefs have remained golden-mustard in colour, and plump with air.

At low tide (when the reef is exposed) the sea grapes are vulnerable to sunburn, especially around midday when the sun is at its most intense. When the summer is exceptionally hot, the grapes burn, shrivel and turn a rusty brown colour, with no air left inside each grape.

Major and I love walking through gardens of sea grapes and both feel and listen as they pop and crunch beneath my sneakers.

Every now and then wild seas pound the reef and rip the sea grapes from the rocks, flinging them up onto the sand. Here they dry and become part of the compost of the sea, part of the cycle of life death and renewal.

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