Wildflower Riot on Monjebup Sand Country

on 28 Aug 2014 

On my way back from meeting up with our restoration contractor and picking up wallaby monitoring cameras on Monjebup North Reserve yesterday afternoon, I raced down to the sand flat below the breakaway to check out the wildflowers.

It's still early, but this part of the reserve is always a wonderland in spring, and it's already a riot of flowering Gastrolobium, Acacia, Grevillea, Kunzea, Melaleuca, Davesia, Bossia, and a host of others I don't even know the genus names of, let alone the species!

Some of these plants are very strange. Check out the Grevillea nudiflora, which sends its flowers out beyond the circumference of the main body of the plant on long arching stems that are, as its name suggests, leafless.

Somewhat ironically, the character of this special place is partly a consequence of its previous clearing history.  With most of the former mallee eucalypt cover, including the mallee roots, removed, these sand-loving wildflowers currently have free rein.

Attempts at cultivation and cropping are evident in the natural regeneration patterns, where Kunzea grows in straight rows! Fortunately the cultivation was short-lived, leaving enough seed bank in the country for regeneration to occur naturally, without the need for the massive active restoration effort we have implemented across 400 hectares of the northern portion of Monjebup North.