Two pale Protea acaulos flowerheads grow next to each other from this Jonkershoek underground stem in July, only differing in their timing.
The older one spreads its bracts, surrounding collapsed floral remains that may look like a bird’s nest to a child. The other is ovoid in bud stage, its bracts still denying the developing perianths their freedom.
Parents and older children often disagree on the appropriate freedom at given stages of child readiness.
Steady, rebellious force exercised gradually from within brings change here. From the outside the sequence appears as the most natural, serene series of events, proceeding in decorous fashion with no trace of conflict (Manning, 2007; Rourke, 1980; iNaturalist).