Friday, 29 March 2013

Wandering Amongst Australian Natives

This morning I woke up with three goals in my mind, take Gizmo the amazing puppy for a walk, take some photos and visit the Arboretum at Lake Burrendong. I managed to do all three things. First I had to find out if the Arboretum would like Gizmo to visit, so I rang and the nice man said he'd love for Giz to frolic in the flowers as long as she had her lead on. Burrendong Botanic Garden and Arboretum is about 50km from home, so Gizmo and I jumped into the car and headed out there armed with plenty of water and a loaded camera.

Be warned, this is going to be a photo heavy post, I took plenty of pics and it was hard deciding which ones I liked the most, I've narrowed it down as much as I could. I know the names of some of the plants I took photos of, so I'll label those but there were a few that I have no idea what they are, some of them could even be weeds for all I know .. doesn't matter they made great photos!

This is the scene that greeted us when we first got out of the car.

We wandered over to a little information centre and picked up a few leaflets about the walks on offer here, then we started just walking and looking at stuff.

This is a Pear-fruited Mallee - Eucalyptus pyroformis
Most of the flowers are gone now, but there's a lot of seed pods about.

This plant facinated me, the leaves look almost painted white. It's a Western Australian Eucalypt called Mottlecah - Eucalyptus macrocarpa
 Apparently the Mottlecah had the largest of the Eucalyptus flowers, I'll have to go back earlier next year to see that.

As Giz and I wandered we spotted a lot of these delicate little flowers along the path, not sure what they are or if they were just a weed, but they were pretty.

These tiny pink flowers were definitely some kind of native, just not sure what one.

I don't even remember taking this photo, so I was delighted to find it on my camera.

Another one of those unknown flowers. Giz and I were now making our way back to the car as we'd realised just how big this place was.

What Terry calls a Spider Flower, it's some kind of Grevillea. We have a couple in our garden and just love them.

 After getting the car we made our way towards the Hakea walk. After parking the car I stopped to take a photo of the view, our first glimpse of the lake. There were to be more tantalising glimpses like this all day.

 We found the Hakea walk. Hakeas are members of the Proteaceae family, a family of flowers that I love, they always produce such interesting shapes and colors.

Banksia's are a part of the same family, this isn't a banksia but it has very similar seed pods. They reminded me of the Banksia Men from 'Snugglepot and Cuddlepie' tho the Banksia Men were much hairier and scarier.

We found our way out of that twisted little grove full of it's twisted little plants and found a path that had more flowers ... Late flowering Wattle.

 No idea what this is, but it's a pretty picture.

By now Giz was getting the hang of standing round waiting for me to finish snapping. But when we were moving it was Giz's choice, she led the way all day so we headed further away from the car going down hill with no idea what we were headed for.

She even stood still while we were surrounded by bees so that I could get this shot.

 The bees were hungry for these little beauties.

 We came out of the bush to see this in front of us. At the same time that we spotted this obviously man made structure, we heard a thumping sound in the bush to the right of the path. We had no idea what either thing was, Giz was keen to go explore the man made structure in front of us.

 After twisting down the hill on a winding little path, and only getting lost once. We discovered that the roof was covering a fernery. The temperature cooled as soon as we stepped under the man made canopy.

 There were all sorts of paths carved into the rock, bridges to cross little waterways. It smelt fresh and almost reminded of a rainforest. Considering we are in a more desert type of location out here, I'm pretty impressed that they managed to do this.

It was about here that Giz and I heard two more thumps, and saw a grey shape bounce out of our view in the bush above us. We think it was probably a Wallaby or Kangaroo, the thump being it's tail hitting the ground. I was disappointed that I didn't get a better look at it, but kinda glad cause I'm not sure what Giz would do if she was confronted by wildlife like that.

 More tiny flowers to line our path.

They provided a nice little place to sit and take in the surroundings.

 And wooden stepping stones over a tiny waterway.

More seed pods.

 After making it back up the hill to the car, and getting the car up the hill (that was a bit touch and go) we decided to find the Lookout that was marked on our map.

More flowers, I think these are a type of Grevillea, but could be wrong.
  It was getting late, I knew we would never get to see everything in one day, so we just went for a quick walk round at the top. 

 Found some more fascinating seed pods.

 Gizmo enjoyed the view as much as I did.

 Looking back up at the lookout, there were a lot of winding paths here, and Giz was keen to explore a bit here.

 I found more interesting delicate little flowers.

 With seed pods.

 This pretty little flower was the last one on the tree, I'm not sure what it is but the flowers look like they would normally cover it when it's in full bloom.

 That was all we had time to do, there is so much more to see, and I could have taken so many more photos. I know it's going to become one of my favourite places and be assured you will see more of it here. These plants change all the time, sometimes they are flowering, sometimes they are just sticks and leaves, even the seed pods are fascinating. I cant wait to see what is here next month!


  1. Beautiful photographs. Such a perfect day for a walk.

    I love seeing all those interesting plants and flowers. I've never seen any of them before. The only one we see over here I think is the Eucalyptus trees.

    Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thanks Brandy :)

      Yeah it was a perfect day, only reached about 23ºC and sunny.

      I love those interesting plants as well, it's such a shame more people dont plant these kinds of plants, we tend to see european plants in the gardens round here, but you do see a few native trees which is good. A lot of the plants I photographed yesterday are found only in Australia and some of them only in parts of Aus, so they are rare and facinating.