Last year, I purchased a potted Magnolia from the supermarket. It is a little frazzled about the edges from the heat and I’ve been watching the two flower buds with some anxiety – sure they would wither and harden. A few days ago, the first one began to loosen and, yesterday, the flower opened on one side. Its lemon scent is heavenly.


the lopsided flower with stamens fallen in a sepal.


stamens scooped in a sepal

I didn’t know about sepals until I was checking Wikipedia to make sure I was looking at stamens. On a magnolia, sepals are indistinguishable from petals so I’m guessing they are the first three at the base.

I moved overhead and looked down and saw more stamens piled in a second sepal. When I came back with the camera, the culprit was there, cavorting amid the stamens with pleasure.


cavorting in loose stamens


looking for juicy bits


yummy yum yum

Curious, I cautiously moved the stem so I could see the heart of the flower.


red stamen scars and curly topped stigmas and a bee, of course

As I watched, this bee took out another stamen and it fell down to join the others.

Today, the flower looks like it spent our very warm night in a pot of tea. Just as well I hadn’t planted the poor thing. I’ll see how the second flower fares in another position.

Inside the flower, the curly bits are gone – replaced by what looked like some spiky red things to my nearly 62-year-old eyes. Apparently, I have a colourful fruit to look forward to. There are several little green bugs lurking inside the flower, too, so I know what my next photography session will be.

I can’t believe it has taken me this long to have a magnolia tree.

On writing…

I have moved past the revision block I’ve had for weeks. I’ve been stuck on lesson 7 and it’s an important one to make sure everything in my novel’s setting makes sense. I had trouble identifying the different things I needed to see during a read-through.

I doubted myself to the stage where I thought let’s just chuck in this whole being a writer thing.  But then I thought of my sister and the promise I made when she died. I will finish this. I will make this dream come true. Of course, I also thought of the money I had paid out to learn to revise in a productive way. I thank my lucky stars I chose to publish on Wattpad because I know some people already love my story despite its shortcomings. To paraphrase Holly Lisle –  it’s already as crappy as it’s going to get.

So, after lots of false starts, some tears, and piles of crumpled worksheets, I decided to do the analysis differently. I put the settings and other elements on index cards instead of using the worksheets. Down to business,finally, and I found myself filling out the worksheets instead of the cards. Huh? Go figure. I know I’m not filling them out exactly right, but the lesson is going to work how it should as I already see how my story start hasn’t carried through to the end as well as it could have.

Progress, at last. A little daunting, as I have quite a few settings and magical explanations to think about and 91 scenes to explore.

Thanks for being part of my journey.  ❤

Flowers, Taniel

My first magnolia flower


12 thoughts on “My first magnolia flower

  1. Anonymous says:

    What a little devil. Looks good thought. Love the flower, make sure its watered well. Be careful where you plant it, remember how big it grows, the perfume would be amazing.

    Don’t get frustrated, run outside scream (releases tension) go back inside have a cup of coffee (watch out the window to see if the neighbours come outside to see what’s going on) and do it the way you want to. Just because you are told that doing something a certain way is the “right way” don’t believe it. The “right way” for you may be something different. Just let your subconscious get on with it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Sue (I had to approve your post, so you weren’t logged in) The tutor promises that the effort is worth it this first time, but we are always free to adapt to what works for us. Swearing and banging the desk helps with tension. 🙂

      I’m lucky I hadn’t killed the magnolia. I forgot to water it when the hot weather arrived. I saved it though, with a couple of good soakings. I didn’t expect it to flower yet. I keep forgetting it is a tree, not a shrub. Thanks for the reminder.


  2. I found your magnolia and bee story charming, and I learned from it as well. How carefully you look at things and learn about them, Christine. It’s a gift you have. Congratulations on getting back into your writing and figuring out a way to make progress on the promise you made your sister.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your kind words, Janet. My sister was a hard worker and I have coasted along in my own life being content with the basics and have never tried to reach the potential she saw in me. In our last conversation before she died, we had a really honest talk. She wished she had spent less time chasing a dollar and had followed her dreams. She now understood my lackadaisical attitude, she said. I told her how I had always been envious of her ability to talk to people and how intelligent she was. And admitted I was jealous of her fantasia lamp when she married and moved into a brand new home. A few months after she passed on, my childhood dream of writing a book surfaced. I’ve tied it to Carol’s memory. She was an avid Mills & Boon girl and I think that’s why I ended writing Fantasy Romance meets Chicklit. I started out writing my favourite – Sword & Sorcery! Thanks for dropping by and enjoying my post. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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