Monday, 6 April 2015

What's happening in the Dharawal National Park?

We took a walk in the Dharawal National Park yesterday, and there's a lot going on: plenty of plants in flower, with new flushes of growth and even some tiny orchids putting up flower spikes. 
Pine-leaved Geebung (Persoonia pinifolia)
grows well in this park. It can get to 4m high,
and looks a bit like a woolly-bush.
Here's a Pine-leaved Geebung with a
late burst of flowers. The flowers are followed
by edible purplish grape-sized fruit.
These ferns were growing high on a rocky outcrop, just
holding on in cracks in the rock. 
It's been a great year for Banksias round Sydney and
Wollongong. Here's a Hairpin Banksia (Banksia spinulosa) putting
 on a good show. 
These Grass Trees (Xanthorrhoea sp) were perfectly
happy growing by the 10B fire trail, among Red
Bloodwoods (Corymbia gummicera) and Saw-tooth 
Banksias (Banksia serrata).
This little heathy plant is Woollsia pungens,
or Snow Wreath. It can flower all year round.
The Scribbly Gums (probably E. racemosa in this case) are one
of the delights of the Dharawal. Here's a group of young
trees growing we saw alongside the fire trail. 
Last, and also least in size terms, here are
the leaves of a few Helmet Orchids (Corybas)
growing happily among dense leaf litter. 
There's always something to see in the Dharawal NP, and usually lots to see. As one of the newest national parks in New South Wales, it seems to be little visited. But it's well worth a trip any time of year. 

(Correction: the orchids are probably Gnat orchids, in the genus Acianthus.) 

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