We have been watching a patch of orchid leaves for years. Each year they grow rich and green and full of promise, then curl up without flowering. We thought they looked like Bird Orchid leaves, as they showed up in that ‘bow-tie’ formation in a reasonable sized colony. This year, I am delighted to say, … Continue reading Autumn Wasp Orchid (Chiloglottis Reflexa)
When we first moved in, almost five years ago now, there were very few native plants around the dam. We pulled out a heap of Agapanthus plants and a large cactus plant which, to us, were at odds with sclerophyll bushland surrounding it. Since then, grass grew, kangaroos and wallabies grazed, and each year we … Continue reading Self-Seeding Cranberry Heath
When I first found these pretty blue flowers, a year or two ago, I thought they might be native. I put the photograph aside for identification, and got too busy to search for the species name. With the wet spring weather, it is plentiful again this year. Unfortunately, it isn’t a native Australian species, but … Continue reading Pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis)
Happy New Year to you! On this first day of 2017, the cold and damp weather is still with us. A few days ago, we were complaining about being too hot, and now we’re cold again. One positive of the cool weather is the prolonged flowering season. In particular, the Pale Vanilla Lily (Arthropodium milleflorum) … Continue reading Pale Vanilla Lily – White?
In the time we have lived here, the first Waxlip flowers have appeared somewhere between the 9th and 21st September. In my scout around the bush, still no sign of them today. Last year, the lack of rain and warmer temperatures meant Spring arrived early, and was over before I really had a chance to … Continue reading Early Nancy Colour
Technically, the Parsons Bands Orchid emerge after the first heavy rains of Autumn. Well, we had a slight shower and here they are. At the moment the Orchids are only lightly scattered here and there, so I am hoping for a heavy downfall soon to encourage more. The photograph below was taken with my … Continue reading Orchid Season Starts Again: Parsons Bands
It is always a pleasure to add a new orchid to my A-Z Native Species List. I found this Golden Moth Orchid growing in grass in a transitional zone between the native bushland and the cultivated area around the dam. As far as I could see, there was only one plant and it only lasted … Continue reading Golden Moth Orchid (Diuris chryseopsis)
Last week I glimpsed a flash of purple from the back of an animal track which disappeared beneath the wire boundary fence. Looking beneath bracken growing right on the inside of the fence line, I found two Common Hovea plants in full bloom. There were no visible Common Hovea plants on the outside … Continue reading Common Hovea (Hovea heterophylla)
I’ve been in touch with Andrew from the Victorian Carnivorous Plant Society to try to get more information about Sundew (Drosera) plants. Recently I found the VCPS website, which describes twelve different Victorian species of Sundew. I thought we had quite a few of them and had attempted to identify the various species growing on the … Continue reading Sorting Out the Sundews: Victorian Drosera Species
I’ve been keeping an eye on a very small number of Striped Greenhoods (also known as Striated Greenhoods) for about a month now. It has taken me a while but I am finally adding them to the A-Z Native Species list. Today I could only find one, but there have been up to five in … Continue reading Striped (Striated) Greenhood (Pterostylis alata)
Yesterday’s discovery of a potential hybrid species of Greenhood made me look into my ‘unidentified’ photographs to see what else was there – and I think I may have found a Trim Greenhood. The photograph was taken a couple of years ago. Among the identifying features of the Trim Greenhood are: a dark brown ‘v’ … Continue reading Trim Greenhood (Pterostylis concinna)?
This week, I’ve had the pleasure of showing a few visitors the Greenhoods and Helmet orchids in flower, as well as some of the other interesting plants on our property. After a few discussions about timing, seasons and conditions, I decided to go back through last year’s photographs for comparison. In mid-August last year I … Continue reading Sharp Greenhood (Pterostylis X ingens)
A surprise invitation to accompany the Ballarat Field Naturalists on an orchid seeking field trip arrived in my inbox on Saturday. With a little rearranging, I was able to take up the offer, so on a beautifully sunny winter Sunday we set off to some local bushland. Thanks to John for inviting me and to … Continue reading Inspired by the Ballarat Field Naturalists
The original Post In a corner of our property, an area which has been slightly disturbed by small-scale mining in the 1800’s, I found a waist-high shrub with white flowers and thorns – Bursaria (native) or Boxthorn (Exotic) I wondered. It turned out to be Boxthorn, an introduced species which has the potential to become … Continue reading Boxthorn (Exotic) or Bursaria (Native)
Investigating the species of plants which are naturally re-vegetating the dam bank, I was pleased to discover that the most plentiful plant is a native species: Austral Brooklime. The seeds of this plant are apparently long-lived and can remain dormant in soil until the right conditions occur. The flowers are tiny – approximately 3mm to … Continue reading Austral Brooklime (Gratiola peruviana)
Using the site VicVeg, with a narrowing to the Corrangamite region, and a search on medium herbs, I eventually worked out the weed in our back yard is Jersey Cudweed – a native plant. This weed looked similar to plants I had seen growing around the dam, and when I photographed it using the … Continue reading Jersey Cudweed (Pseudognaphalium luteoalbum)
This year the Spring has been so dry that flowers seem to be behaving in unseasonal ways, including the Yellow Rush-lily which last Summer flowered in February. Having noted that, I have only found one small group of plants, so perhaps they are growing in a micro-climate that suits them and the others will flower … Continue reading Yellow Rush-lily (Tricoryne elatior)
Learning how to identify the various species of Sun Orchid is not an easy task, so I am beginning with the Slender Sun Orchid because it is one that I have (I believe) successfully classified. I’m happy to be corrected by orchid enthusiasts! While Sun Orchids come in a variety of sizes and colours, the … Continue reading Slender Sun Orchid (Thelymitra pauciflora)
I thought I would share this photograph of Milkmaid flowers, which I took today while photographing the Sun Orchids. Milkmaids already appear on the species list, but the Macro lens allows me to take a much clearer photograph than the previous one. It will take me a day or two to work out the different species of … Continue reading Spring Flowers: Milkmaid
There is so much in flower at the moment, I could have chosen many different native flowers to write about – but the Yam Daisy is one that should have been included in the A – Z Species list last year. When I saw it in flower again, I thought it was high time to dedicate … Continue reading Yam Daisy (Microseris sp. 3)
In an earlier post I reported that I had found one solitary Maroonhood Orchid. Since then, I’ve discovered three small colonies. However, I’m unsure if one of these colonies is the same species, or a sub-species. Can anyone help me to correctly identify it from the photographs below? I have spent quite a bit of time … Continue reading Calling Orchid Enthusiasts: Help Please!
I’ve been watching the buds on the tiny Scented Sundew plants grow over the last week or so, and today I’ve had the good fortune to see the first flowers of the season. Consisting of five white petals and stamens tipped in a clear yellow, these flowers are the definition of simple beauty. The leaves … Continue reading First Scented Sundews of the season
Here are the photographs of the pink Common Heath flowers I wrote about in yesterday’s post. So far, I have only found one plant with pink flowers, but we have quite a few Common Heath plants with white flowers. It always seems to be a race to photograph these flowers before the Swamp Wallabies … Continue reading Pink Common Heath (Epacris impressa)
Just for the joy of the colour, here is a photograph of the Bougainvillea in our back yard. Most of the bracts have one or two white flowers, but this one has three.