Flashing flower

DAY 194 (16 OCTOBER) – Garden nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus) (Farnham)

An autumnal leaf from something else strays into a thicket of nasturtiums. Today I learnt that nasturtiums original in the Andes. Amazing, as I’d always thought of them as so English and suburban.

And there’s something called ‘Das Elizabeth Linne-Phanomen’: a sensation, especially apparent at dusk, where the orange flowers seem to emit small flashes. At first it was thought to be an electrical phenomenon (which would have been more exciting) but it’s now thought the human eye just reacts to the contrast between the bright orange and the green of the leaves. So a trompe l’oeil I suppose… Must nip out to check one evening.

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