Thursday, 17 October 2013

Australian wildflowers

I feel privileged to live where we do.  We are lucky to be responsible for forty three acres of bush in Victoria.  Our property is basically one hill and our home is at the very top. I'm terrible at estimating distances but I'd say we have about two acres around our home that we use for orchards, house yard and garden.  The rest is bush.

The owners before us kept goats that ranged the bush so we had hardly any new trees when we moved here.  It was just scrub but slowly we are watching little seedlings coming up.

We have, however, had wildflowers every year.  The first time I walked through the bush in spring I was determined to learn the names of all these flowers but, shamefully, here I am ten years later and I still only know a couple.  Once the last couple of children came along we became so busy with child rearing and the desperate search for good services and therapy for Buddy Boy that fun stuff just kinda stopped for a while.

The other day I finally got out in the bush with camera in hand.  My goodness!  I couldn't believe how much there was to look at.  The following photos were taken within a ten to fifteen minute walk.

Sadly my knowledge of the flowers is nearly nil!  Who knows, maybe they're not all Australian wildflowers?  Hopefully in ten years time I will be able to name all of these and many more.


I know this one - a greenhood orchid past its prime



Is this a budding chocolate lily?

That's a shiny bright blue ant hiding behind the roots in his hole.



Same flower as the first


Look at this strange stuff on the dam.  I'm assuming it might be to do with frog hatching.

From a distance it just looks like bubbles.


Is this called the *stamen?* of a *blackboy?*
 So there you have it!  I live in the bush.  I love it, respect it, am fascinated by it but am completely ignorant!!!

Please educate me on our local flora.


purplepear said...

Frog spawn on the dam is the only thing I can identify. We'll be in Melbourne next week, any chance we could catch up. No idea where you are so not sure that this will be a possibility.

Linda said...

Oooh! I would love it! When are you coming down? I might go find your email on your farm page. Or maybe a phone number? Talk soon!

Caro said...

Hi Linda, I know the second last one is a fringe lily, and I recognise most of the others but would need to look them up. We have an excellent reference book called "Wildflowers of Victoria" by Corrick and Fuhrer if you'd like to borrow it sometime but it's a great one to buy and have on hand.

Anonymous said...

Hi Linda,

Image 1 = Sun-orchid, most likely the Dotted Sun-orchid (Thelymitra ixioides). The Hybrid Sun-orchid (Thelymitra xtruncata) also has spots, but not as pronounced.

Image 2 = Rice-flower, most likely the Common Rice-flower (Pimelea humilis). There is another called the Slender Rice-flower, Pimelia linifolia, that grows to about 1.5m. The one in your picture looks like the Common Rice-flower which only grow up to 30cm.

Image 3 = Greenhood Orchid, like you said. Can’t tell which variety from image.

Image 4 = Mountain Grevillea (Grevillea alpina).

Image 5 = Looks like a grass, but I’m woeful at identifying grasses!

Image 6 = Hard to tell, but it could be a Great Sun-orchid (Thelymitra aristata), herb to 1 m (flowers 40cm, multiple flowers pre stem).

Image 8 = Salmon Sun-orchid (Thelymitra rubra).

Image 9 = Could be the Bent Goodenia (Goodenia geniculata), or possibly a type of Guinea Flower (Hibbertia). The flowers of these two plants look quite similar. The one in your image looks more like the Bent Goodenia.

Image 10 = Sun-orchid, most likely the Dotted Sun-orchid (Thelymitra ixioides).

Image 10 = Need a closer look at the flowers and foliage, but could be the Small Wrinklewort (Siloxerus multiflorus).

Image 14 = Twining Fringe-lily (Thysanotus patersonii).

Image 15 = Flower spike of the Grass-tree (Xanthorrhoea australis).

The are lots of books out there to help you identify Australian native plants, possibly even one specific to your area. Books with clear, close-up images of the flowers and foliage are the best. Happy native flower hunting!

Linda said...

Thanks Caro. I definitely need a wildflower book. I'll have to have a look at yours one day.

Thanks Anonymous for the comment and Barb for your email. I can't imagine how you remember all that information!! Amazing!