Monthly Archives: September 2011

Sweet Pittosporum

Pittosporum undulatum

“Originally a scattered inhabitant of shady, rainforest gullies, it is highly opportunistic and now aggressively colonises almost any moist, shady location..” – NPOS p.196

Like the Fishbone Fern the sweet Pittosporum is a native plant that is now often considered a weed in urban bushland. Although the Sweet Pittosporum is different in that it’s also naturally found in the Sydney area.

We have a few of these in the front and back yard. It’s a small tree, the leaves are vivid green, shiny and have wavy margins, which is where is scientific name undulatum comes from. It’s meant to have a strong sweet smell when in flower. I’ve had a blocked nose for the week though and have not noticed it. The seeds are edible and were ground for food by Aboriginies.

Sweet Pittosporum
Sweet Pittosporum in the back yard next to the washing line. It's doing well considering it's growing on top of a large rock outcrop.
Sweet Pittosporum Flowers
Sweet Pittosporum Flowers - check out the two small green bugs

more info:

Pitted Crassula

Crassula multicava

Another breakout that has colonized large parts of the front garden. The Pitted Crassula,  also know as Cape Province Pygmy Weed is originally from South Africa and is considered by some to be a weed over here. It’s a small ground hugging plant with light green thick succulent leaves. The leaves are covered in small pitts or divots, flowers are white to light pink and look like a 4 pronged star.

Nothing much more to say except this plant’s days in the yard are numberd, on reflection of the time I spend gardening those numbers could be in the 1000’s, but they are still numbered.

Pitted Crassula
Pitted Crassula in the garden. There's a shoot of Lavender Scallop poking up in the center top of the picture, that's scheduled for termination too.

more info:

Coral Fern ( G. rupestris )

Gleichenia rupestris

NPOS p.314 

This coral fern was helpfully marked on the Mueller track in the wildflower gardens. It was growing on sandstone near the base of a small cliff. The species wasn’t indicated, but from the description in NPOS I think it’s Gleichenia rupestris. The fronds are flat on the underside and are larger and flatter than the pouched coral fern, the stalks are hairless.

Coral Fern
Coral Fern - no pouches here
Coral Fern
close up of fronds and hairless stalks of the Coral Fern

more info:

Mueller Track at the Wildflower Garden

Jess, Will and I went on another trip to the wildflower gardens. Kelly stayed at home with Tom to rest and recover from a cold. The rest of us had the worst of it yesterday.

We went in via the playground then on to explore the Mueller track for the first time. It was the first hot day of the season, was meant to be 28 and it did feel like it. Only a few meters out of the carpark we came across a large red bellied black snake by the side of the track enjoying the heat. We got a good close look, it didn’t seem too worried by us.

Just into the Mueller track the was a big nest of Jack Jumpers. Man I hate those things. Will was in the backpack and I carried Jess over. Just past the nest we came across another family coming the other way, I told them to look out for the ants. The mum jumped over, then the two daughters got scared and froze just in front of the ants nest and started screaming, then the mum started screaming “dont stand there! move move move!” quite a sight. It must have left an impression on Jess, the rest of the walk she was worried we might come across some more “bitey ants”

We came back up to the Solander trail at the hairpin and walked back to the playground for lunch. It was a good walk, Jess a Will seemed to like it, although they’d had enough by the end.

Red Bellied Black Snake
Red Bellied Black Snake by the side of the track
Will and the Snake
Will didn't pay much attention to the snake
Drink Stop
A short drink stop on the Mueller track