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IFTW volunteer

In Flower This Week

A news sheet prepared by a Gardens' volunteer.
Numbers before each plant refer to temporary IFTW labels in the gardens.
Numbers in square brackets
[ ] refer to garden bed Sections. Plants in flower are in bold type.

View past issues of 'In Flower This Week'.

26 November 2014

Pelargonium rodneyanum

Pelargonium rodneyanum
click for larger image

A walk along the Main Path this time of the year is a rewarding experience. Flowers are plentiful from the moment you leave the Visitor Information Centre (VIC).

  1. On the left as you leave the VIC is a large specimen of Pandorea jasminoides [Section 212] covered in pink flowers and attractive mid-green foliage. This woody vine, also known as Bower of Beauty, is native to New South Wales and Queensland.
  2. Actinotus helianthi ‘Starbright’ [Section 221], or Flannel Flower, is in a pot on the right as you leave the VIC. The white flowers with yellow/grey centres have a velvety texture, as does the divided grey-green foliage.
  3. Further along on the left in a pot is Anigozanthos ‘Bush Volcano’ [Section 210], a long-lasting kangaroo paw with red/orange flowers.
  4. Homoranthus prolixus [Section 210] is also on the left in a pot. There is an interesting contrast between the layers of acid yellow flowers on blue-green foliage. This plant is restricted to an area of NSW near Inverell and its status in the wild is listed as Vulnerable.
  5. Low on the right is the groundcover Pelargonium rodneyanum [Section 174], or Magenta Storksbill, with small bright pink/purple flowers on green lobed ‘geranium’ leaves. It occurs naturally in fragmented populations in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria.
  6. Detour across the lawn from the café to see the outstanding small tree Melaleuca linariifolia ‘Seafoam’ [Section 243]. This paperbark has many frothy white flowers and green needle foliage.
  7. On the left in the small garden is Grevillea sericea [Section 244], with white spider flowers on an open airy bush. The more common form of this plant has pink flowers. It is endemic to NSW.
  8. On the left in the Ellis Rowan Garden is Callistemon ‘Little John’ [Section 131], a dwarf form of Callistemon viminalis. This plant shows a stunning contrast between deep red bottlebrush flower spikes and green/blue foliage.
  9. Continue on the Main Path up the hill and look down to your left to see Baeckea astarteoides [Section 10], a small, delicate weeping bush with tiny pink flowers.
  10. Further on your left is Leptospermum ‘Aphrodite’ [Section 10], with pink and green ‘tea-tree’ flowers on a large open bush with small light green foliage. This plant was developed locally by Bywong plant breeder Peter Ollerenshaw. It arose among a batch of seedlings of Leptospermum spectabile.
  11. On your left overhanging the path is a Callistemon species [Section 10], with pink flower spikes on a small weeping tree.
  12. On the right is a small tree covered in white flowers with green centres. This is Leptospermum polygalifolium subsp. montanum [Section 9]. It is commonly known as Mountain Tea Tree or Tantoon.
  13. Further on your right is another large shrub, Kunzea ambigua [Section 9], covered in fluffy white blooms with a heavy honey scent. These flowers are much beloved by bees and other insects. It grows naturally on the coastal strip of eastern Australia (in New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania).
  14. Again on your right is Grevillea insignis subsp. insignis [Section 9], an open, rather straggly bush with blue-green prickly holly-like leaves. The large pinkish flowers have dark red styles. It is native to south-west Western Australia.
  15. The groundcover to your right is Persoonia chamaepitys [Section 27], or Creeping Geebung, with orange/gold flowers and light green foliage.

Rosalind Walcott