Ovens & Murray Advertiser - North East Regional Extra

YOUR GARDEN

- with HELEN

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The colours of Australia, proudly worn by our national sporting teams, and fittingly festooning the PʺDJBM "VTUSBMJBO $PBU PG "SNT

September 1 is Wattle Day across Australia.

There is a chequered history to arrive at an agreed date for the celebratio­n of Wattle Day.

The first Wattle Day was on September 1, 1910 in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide.

This was re-branded as 1st August in 1916 in NSW.

With various other attempts in between, it was re-introduced in the 1980s as September 1 in the eastern states.

Finally, after much to-ing and fro-ing, September 1, 1988 was declared Australia’s national Wattle Day, in time to celebrate the nation’s bi-centenary.

At the same time, the Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha) was officially declared Australia’s national emblem, and Australia’s national colours of green and gold became PʺDJBM

There are about 750 species of acacia.

5IFSF XJMM CF TQFDJFT JO nPXFS BU any time of the year.

In the eastern states there is prolific blooming in August and September.

Aside from these ‘in-your-face’ golden beauties, there are many more lesser-known, interestin­g species.

Many acacias don’t have actual leaves.

5IFZ IBWF NPEJmFE nBUUFOFE leaf stalks called phyllodes which function like leaves.

4PNF QIZMMPEFT BSF nBU TPNF long, some rounded.

Some are tiny, and some look like scales or spines.

0UIFS BDBDJBT IBWF GFSOZ ASFBM leaves.

5IF nPXFST PG BDBDJBT BSF NJOJT cule individual blooms, clustered together in balls or rods. Flowers may be in multiples or borne singly.

Flower colours mostly range from white through various creams, yellows and golden tones.

There are literally hundreds of acacias suitable as garden specimens.

Acacia aphylla MFBnFTT SPDL XBUUMF JT B TQSJOH nPXFSJOH TQF cies which is different from those usually seen in gardens.

The species originates from near Perth, WA, and is classified as ‘threatened’.

It grows on hills amongst granite outcrops.

A. aphylla has grey intricate, intertwini­ng stems and bears sinHMF HPMEFO nPXFST JO FBSMZ TQSJOH Its delicate, architectu­ral form is a great conversati­on-starter.

The foliage is greyish and soft to the touch.

It requires well-drained soils and full or part sun.

Mature plants may reach up to three metres and can be pruned to shape.

They will re-sprout from older wood. There’s a whole universe of diversity out there in the acacia genus, just waiting to be discovered or planted in your own patch.

An on-line comprehens­ive guide can be found at ANPSA Guide to Acacia. Australian Native Plants Society.

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 ?? 1)050 )FMFO 7BO 3JFU ?? NATIONAL DAY: September 1 is Wattle Day across Australia.
1)050 )FMFO 7BO 3JFU NATIONAL DAY: September 1 is Wattle Day across Australia.

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