Australian National Botanic Gardens
In Flower This Week
A weekly news-sheet prepared by a Gardens volunteer
Banksias continue to flower, wattles and grevilleas are seen to be bursting into flower and many other plants are still awaiting the warmer spring climate. This walk will include mostly the first three.
First see, the array of plants in the large pots outside the Visitor Centre doors. View the bright red trumpet-shaped flowers of Rhododendron lactum x lochiae; the Kangaroo Paw, Anigozanthos manglesii with unbranched, woolly maroon stems and red and green flowers and Mirbelia speciosa subsp. speciosa with brilliant purple pea flowers along its straggly branches.
In the Display Garden along Banks Walk, Grevillea alpina `Gold Rush' [Section 174] is dotted with bright yellow flowers and Grevillea `Scarlet Sprite' [Section 174] sparkles with red flowers. Both flower for long periods. Follow the main path and find Queensland Silver Wattle, Acacia podalyriifolia [Section 119], a tall shrub with grey green foliage ablaze with golden yellow, fluffy flower balls. Nearby, Micromyrtus ciliata [Section 10] is a low, arching plant covered with red buds, now exploding into tiny white flowers. Amble along this path, enjoy the many shades and textures of greens.
Branch off at Banksia spinulosa var. collina [Section 28], a medium, rounded shrub bearing long, lemon flower-spikes with fine, needle foliage. Nearby is Banksia oblongifolia [Section 27] with deep green flower-spikes. Walk among the lovely, old mottled white and grey trunks of the Brittle Gum, Eucalyptus mannifera subsp. mannifera [Sections 27, 28]. A prostrate form of Grevillea lanigera [Section 27] is quite dense with a covering of red flowers. Sit awhile and admire Banksia ericifolia var. ericifolia [Section 28], of medium size and always with tall, dazzling, golden flower-spikes. This shrub will attract the nectar-feeding birds such as the Eastern Spinebill, the New Holland Honeyeater and even the brilliant Crimson Rosella.
Nearby Banksia occidentalis [Section 28] with tall, mottled trunks has eye-catching flower spikes of lemon accentuated with red, hooked styles. Compare a hybrid form of Grevillea juniperina [Section 27] and Grevillea rosmarinifolia [Section 27]. Both have similar red spider-like flowers. Banksia integrifolia var. compar [Section 27] is a tall, graceful shrub with lemon flower spikes, dotted with grey, set among the smooth, shiny, silver-backed leaves. The light grey, fissured bark is also interesting. Over the road, set among the greenery, the splash of brilliant yellow flowers is that of the Cootamundra Wattle, Acacia baileyana [Section 192] ... quite a sight.
Returning, keep an eye out for a gardener with rake for accompanying him will surely be a Yellow Robin, or three, awaiting an easy meal ...
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