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Wild Flowers

Western Australia is renowned for its wildflowers. The place to see the famous 'carpet of flowers' is in the midlands north of Perth, with the best time being between August and October. An amazing tapestry of colours springs from the sandy soil and can be quite breathtaking. These wildflowers are commonly known as 'everlastings' because the petals stay attached even after the flower has died. In the south-west of Western Australia (the area from Carnarvon to Esperance), there is a major flush of flowers in spring. Spring can extend from June in the north to November in the south, so with good planning this whole period can be filled with some great days of wildflower-spotting!
Two of the better-known wildflowers are Sturt's desert pea and kangaroo paw. Desert pea, the floral emblem of South Australia, flourishes after heavy rain. With a distinctive blaze of red around a black centre, the desert pea thrives in the harsh Australian inland. Kangaroo paw only grows wild in Western Australia and is that state's floral emblem. Taking its name from the distinctive tubular flowers with a velvet-like surface, the kangaroo paw has been used for medicinal purposes by Aboriginals for thousands of years.
While there are many wildflower tours available, it often pays to go see for yourself. The drive, particularly from Perth, is not difficult and gives you the opportunity to stop and smell the flowers at your own pace.

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> No.28 <September 2018>