Tag Archives: horticulture

The White Flowering Pine

I was walking through Bunbury the other day when I spotted this rare White-Flowered Pine.

These flowers are quite unusual in that they are free moving, sometimes leaving the tree for extended periods of time.

Sometimes they are called a “Corella” and are often mistaken for members of the parrot family.

Wandering Herbivore





This proud plant is beading up in horror. I am just about to cut its unopened flower.

I will then steam it for about 5 minutes and then crunch into its Vitamin C enriched goodness.

Home grown Broccoli for dinner tonight.


I Was Mint to Post This


Hover Fly

I have been watching this little fellow for a few days now.

Then I heard a discussion about her on my ABC radio.

Blows in from the inland on the easterly winds, lays eggs near aphids (I have some on my parsley) and the larvae eat the aphids!

She is only about 4 mm long and posed a bit of a photographic challenge because of her speed.

hover fly

Here she is resting, or egg laying, on a tomato leaf.

hover fly


Although they are rare in Perth, the Magnolias still give a colourful display.

This tree was in the Mayland’s Library Garden.


I Can’t Stop and Talk

I’m in a hurry!


Busy Bees

There is a bottlebrush shrub flowering in Buff’s garden.

Attracting lots of bees.


All looking for a sip of nectar, accidentally spreading pollen around the plant.


I’m not sure what this wasp was doing there. Maybe it was looking for a drink.


Not that all the visitors were being busy bees. Some were just lazing around in the Spring sunshine.


Photo Hunt # 77; Original

In June 2003 I bought my first digital camera.

A Pentax Optio 330GS.

With 3.2 mega pixals it was not state of the art at that time but was close.

This is the first image I recorded with that camera. My original Digital Image.


In the four years since,  says he checking the digital counters, I have taken nearly 20,000 images with this camera and over 10,000 with the SLR I now use most of the time.

Western Australian Wax Plants

Wandering through public gardens
or simply walking along the street.
Sudden sights of flowering shrubs
Deep pink lightening to off white
From all over this great state
Sure signs of Winter’s end.

wax plants

Possibly the most common proof that spring is here is the sudden flowering  of the wax plants. Not just a few blooms but a total recolouring of the plant from its wintergreen.

Although there are wax plants named after many towns in the South West of Western Australia. All different. All with waxy flowers of shades ranging from  deep pink to white.

The Geraldton Wax. The largest flowers and the widest range of colours.

wax plants

Long lasting, they make an ideal cut flower.

Providing you grow your own shrub. As so many do.

Cutting branches of this attractive flower are not permitted, either in public gardens or out in the bush.

wax plants

Everlasting Porn

 Cole Porter, back in 1955, wrote:-

….birds do it, bees do it
Even educated fleas do it
Let’s do it, let’s fall in love

Well, let’s reproduce!

Birds and flowers and bugs and mammals all do it.  In full view of the rest of the world.

Here is an Everlasting reproducing. Having sex! Needing a threesome to do it successfully.


Photo Hunt 76; Paper

Australian swamps, lakes and waterway, in their natural state, are lined with trees, sedges and rushes.

The trees are normally melaluecas. They just love getting their feet wet.


Noted for their antiseptic, antibacterial and cleansing oil, these trees have another, more important use.


Their bark makes a great lining for hanging baskets. You can pull great strips of it off, not harming the tree at all.


As can be seen from this final image, they are normally called “Paperbarks”.

The bark can be stripped from itself into thinner and thinner layers, just like a ream of paper.

Wild Oats

 Someone has been sowing them!

wild oats

Return of the Ent

On the edge of the Swan, a tidal river.

These roots are made for walkin’.


Boronia Days

For a century the good burghers of Perth knew when Spring had arrived.

Unexpectedly, a beguiling scent filled the busy streets.

A perfume loved by most, unnoticed by a few and detested by a small but vocal group.

On street corners, empty the previous day, women would be standing beside buckets filled with nondescript branches covered in flowers as shy as the smiles of the schoolgirls walking to the railway station.


At lunchtime, secretaries would buy a bunch to take back to the office. After work, businessmen would relax in the bar of the Palace, Savoy or Adelphi hotels and buy a bunch on the way home as a peace offering to their wives.

Coming from a tiny, dark brown, almost black bloom, the perfume spread along St Georges Terrace and Hay Street masking, temporarily, the fumes from the traffic.


Cut by farmer’s wives in the swamps of the forests south of Perth and brought by train to the city, this was an important harvest and an income for many struggling new farmers. In modern days the oil is extracted from the blooms and sold worldwide as an essential oil for use in specialist soaps, candles and incense.

There are a number of different types of Boronia. Yet it is only the brown variety which has the all-pervasive perfume. The pale pink “aniseed” and the darker pink Kalgan Boronias, while visually less modest, have a much shyer scent.

boronia boronia

Wonderful as these harbingers of Spring are in the crowded streets of Perth, they have their own beauty in their native habitat.