Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Spring Flowers at the CTC @Robertson.

Robertson does Waratahs very well. In a few days, most gardens in Robertson, and several parks which have been planted out by the local Environment group (REPS), will be showing a wonderful display of Waratahs.

I have planted some at the Community Technology Centre (CTC@Robertson) garden, and on Saturday, the first plant (2 years since it was planted out as a 4 inch seedling) has flowered for the first time. This Waratah is the true species Telopea speciosissima, (the NSW Waratah) not the more commonly planted, and more floriferous hybrid Waratah "Shady Lady". The modern hybrid Waratahs are great garden plants in Robertson. They absolutely love the deep, red basalt soil here. Incidentally, one of the differences between the true species and the hybrids is the sharp serrated edges of the leaves of the species. The hybrids tend to give less evidence of the leafy bracts which surround the flower, thus appearing to have more of the rounded buds in the centre. In many cases, the hybrids have multiple flower heads on the one stem. In that sense, they sometimes appear to carry "mutant" flowers. More photos later on, to demonstrate that.

Here is the local Carrington Falls Grevillea, Grevillea rivularis. I am very pleased to have established this plant at the CTC. I planted several seeds from this plant last week. I also have a large bush of this plant at home. The "toothbrush" shaped flowers are distinctively coloured, with pale soft pink bases to the young flowers, but the older flowers in the "head" of flowers mature to a mauve colour (look at the left of the flower structure above). The colouring is very delicate. It is not a spectacular flower, but given its rarity, and the fact that the birds and ants love the flowers, I am happy to grow it here. I believe it is nice to grow local wildflowers in local gardens.

I have also established a nice clump of deep purple coloured Dwarf Bearded irises at the CTC. These flower just a little earlier than their taller cousins. These are, of course, exotic flowers, but I love them too.
I am not an "horticultural racist" - I like to grow beautiful flowers, no matter wherever they come from.

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