September is an exciting time to be out and about, as there is so much to see. Plants are green and lush after consistent rains, and with a profusion of wildflowers, the heathlands will be ‘dressed to impress’ leading up to the Angair Show weekend.
The low growing Hibbertias provide a bright splash of colour. Silky Guinea-flower H. sericea var. sericea, the Bundled Guinea-flower H. fasciculata var. prostrata and Erect Guinea-flower H. riparia are all bright yellow, with five petals, and almost stalkless flowers.
Heath Daisy Allittia uliginosa has a pretty, single, white flower, often with mauve underneath the petals, and grows to about 30 cm.
The delightful, small shrub, Rosy Baeckia, Euryomyrtus ramosissima subsp. prostrata, grows to about 30 cm. The small, pale pink, five petalled flowers, which usually face downwards, look like tiny ‘jam tarts’.
There are several species of ‘egg and bacon’ flowers to be seen, including Rough Bush-pea Pultenaea scabra, and Soft Bush-pea Pultenaea mollis. These, like all Pultenaeas, have the top petals forming a hood. Both species have yellow flowers with red central markings. P. scabra is erect or spreading, and grows to head height. The leaves are readily identifiable, being small and heart-shaped. P. mollis is often taller, sometimes growing to 3 metres, with leaves that are very narrow, because of their tightly inrolled margins, and which often curve upwards.
Two low-growing shrubs, with flowers similar to the Pultenaeas, are Grey Parrot-pea Dillwynia cinerascens, and Showy Parrot-pea Dillwynia sericea. The Dillwynias have back petals that spread out. The two Dillwynia species are difficult to tell apart, as both have short, narrow leaves. Grey Parrot-pea leaves are slender and turn back at the tip. The leaves of the Showy Parrot-pea are stiff, and taper gradually to a point. The flowers can vary in colour from yellow to red.
The beautiful, mauve-blue Love creeper Comesperma volubile, has a much smaller pea-like flower that really stands out, as it will twine loosely around other plants, often ascending into higher vegetation. The leafless Bitter–pea Daviesia brevifolia, is a favourite, with its vivid apricot to salmon-pink flowers appearing at this time of year.
Enjoy the delights of this special time of the year, and be sure to carry a copy of Flowers of Anglesea and Aireys Inlet on your walks.