Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Wattle is Out

We're so laconic, we Aussies. An entire tree turns to radiant yellow and we merely say, "The wattle is out." At once bold and delicate, the flowers lift the heart in the chilly season, when exotic plants are fading or sleeping.

Here is a spray from one of my Fringe Wattles (Acacia fimbriata). Each wattle-ball is about 4mm across when fully open. The little closed fists of the unopened flowers add to the charm, I think. It has a sweet pollen-scent which comes in gentle breaths right to my back door, and has been for a week or so. Now imagine the tree -- a couple of metres high and 4m wide -- and you will understand the effect of such a sight in wintertime.

I have three species of wattle in my garden: Fringe Wattle, Sydney Golden Wattle, and Parramatta Wattle. Two plants of each. Yes, you'll see photos of the others shortly!