The beauty of youth

DAY 66 (10 JUNE) – Chinese holly (Osmanthus heterophyllus) (Farnham, England)

A wintry plant for a wintry day of solid rain. I nipped out quickly to take this Chinese holly in the garden. What interested me is how much more attractive the new leaves are than the old ones. Paler, in a blend of almost autumnal colours. And, although they’re pretending to have spikes, these are still soft and harmless. The older leaves – dark green in the background here – are stiffer, waxy and unpleasantly prickly. Perhaps a bit like us…?

What makes it Chinese by the way is that the leaves are ‘opposite’ on the stem, rather than ‘alternate’ like English holly.

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