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Give wattle the status it deserves


Have you noticed driving along roads bordered by bushland there are trees covered in bright yellow balls?

I am surprised each year when this beautiful native begins emerging with its colourful display in the depth of winter.

I must admit acacias (wattles) have lost popularity for planting by the home gardener – this is probably because of their short life span and size. 

Let me assure you that yearly pruning after flowering will prolong their life. Their greatest advantage is how quickly they grow, filling in spaces, particularly where privacy is needed.

There are 800 species of acacia, which are indigenous to Australia and part of the mimosaceae family.

We tend not to give wattle the status it deserves, and we should because, after all, it is our national flower.

Acacia pycnantha is generally recognised as the Australian floral emblem.

The Greek word pycnantha refers to the dense mass of flowers borne on the broad leaf wattles.  Acacia pycnantha is a small tree with a short trunk and a dense rounded crown of attractive grey-silver leaves.

One of the prettiest wattles is the Acacia Limelight, a softly foliaged plant that is wonderful for accent planting. It is low growing with lime-green foliage, fern like with a weeping habit, making it ideal for multiple planting giving the effect of Maiden Hair ferns growing in the full sun.

Don’t be disappointed when you go shopping for these lovely plants as I find they aren’t marketed commercially as they once were. It is best to seek out a nursery specialising in native plants.


  • It is possible to plant early tomatoes if you have a sheltered spot in a bed prepared with cow manure.
  • Are you putting your cyclamen out each night to freshen it up in the cold air?
  • Newly planted pansies and primula can be encouraged by applying Flourish each week.
  • Established roses can be moved this month.

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