As promised, here is another of my wattle trees in flower. It is Acacia parramattensis, the Parramatta Wattle. When I bought it, the tag said that it would grow to five metres high. That's great, I thought; I need something to protect the house from westerly sun, but not something that will grow tall enough to obstruct our electrical wires. And it's a native of Western Sydney, too!
See where the wires are?
Oh well, at least it keeps the summer sun off the garden.
I'd guess the tree is about 8m tall. It is only after you've been a victim that you hear that nurseries can be a bit "imaginative" in describing the potential heights of plants. In some cases, this is not their fault: some Australian species vary considerably in height depending on growing conditions. The Royal Botanical Gardens says the Parramatta Wattle will reach 6m. I would guess that they grew it on Sydney sandstone, perhaps in the harbourside gardens, and that it does not really enjoy those conditions. The Australian National Botanic Gardens puts the height at 16m! If this much variation in height is possible, why not give the range on the label?
All my wattle flowers have held on well this year. We've had some cold, rainy weather, and it seems to have lengthened the flowering period. Last year, this tree was only in flower for two weeks before old-gold confetti littered the ground. This year, it's been about a month, and the flowers are only starting to fall.
This brings me to a garden mystery. As I said, I have two Parramatta Wattles. Only this one is in flower. The other is not even in bud. All I can think of is that the second one is growing against a garden shed, giving it a cool root run. Perhaps it doesn't know it's almost Spring. As the temperature outside is currently about 12 C, but the apparent temperature is 6 C, I'm not sure that I'm ready to believe in Spring yet, either.