Native arrivals

One of the advantages of having an informal sprawling garden area with a rough mainly native “lawn” is that occasionally native plants will pop up unexpectedly, the seeds having either blown in or been brought in by birds. One such plant close to our house, as well as on our roadside, is Sweet Hound’s-tongue, Cynoglossum suaveolens, pictured left.

As with many small native herbs, it can be quite unobtrusive with its wavy-edged hairy leaves and tiny white flowers. But what distinguishes this dainty perennial plant, and what we love about it, is that its flowers have an exquisite fragrance. Mind you, it is usually necessary to get down on hands and knees to really appreciate it. Its flowering period has been extended this year due to the unusually wet January.
 
 
 
 
 

Another unexpected arrival this summer in a pebbled area around our house is Mat Spurge, Euphorbia dallachyana, a prostrate perennial herb with tiny reddish flowers. Actually the flowers of Euphorbia species are unique and have a special name: cyathia. While resembling single flowers, they are actually a solitary female flower surrounded by a cluster of male flowers.

 
 
So before ripping out new arrivals as weeds, it’s worth checking if they are in fact natives adding a touch of variety to your garden area!

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