Simpson Shadehouse - Adelaide Botanic Gardens

Simpson Shadehouse - Adelaide Botanic Gardens

28 February 2015

Flaked out!

Has anybody else noticed their Eucalypts shedding huge flakes of bark this year? They generally do shed bark at this time of year but there seems to be much more shedding this year than previous years.  Oh, and that's today's koala flaked out!

23 February 2015

Adelaide Rosella

The Adelaide Rosella is thought to be a result of interbreeding between the Crimson Rosella which is found in much of south eastern Australia and the Yellow Rosella which is found along the River Murray.  The latter is itself now considered to be a subspecies of Crimson Rosella.  This photo was taken from the bedroom window so it's a little grainy.

15 February 2015

Correa decumbens 'Mount Lofty' (Spreading Correa)

This South Australian Correa started flowering before Christmas so it's definitely one of the Summer flowering Correas (most of which flower in Autumn or Spring).  As its species name suggests, Correa decumbens is supposed to be "decumbent" or spreading although I have two other type plants which were sold as spreading but so far are anything but!  However, this selection, often sold just as Correa 'Mount Lofty', does spread and forms a dense small bush that can fill a small, part shaded area in any temperate garden.  It's frost and drought hardy but is happy in moist ground as well so it's quite adaptable.  The flower of Correa decumbens is different from other correas in that it has anthers which protrude quite a long way beyond the petals whereas most other correas have anthers that are completely within or barely protrude from the petals.

14 February 2015

Peach (O'Henry)

Happy Valentines Day!!  I took this photo a couple of weeks ago when the peaches were just beginning to ripen.  This is an O'Henry peach which produces yellow freestone delicious fruit which ripens in early to mid February.  We planted many fruit trees in 2009 and most are just starting to be productive bearers.  This was the first fruit we've picked off the O'Henry.  It's a variety which seems to suffer badly from peach leaf curl (a springtime fungus).  We had some fruit form last year but it was damaged by the peach leaf curl and dropped off.  This year a combination of spraying with Liquid Copper, physically removing leaves that still curled and a dry spring was most beneficial for fruit set.  We can't control the weather and, because copper sprays kill beneficial insects like ladybirds and bees, spraying is limited to before bud burst and after all flowering; however, physical removal of remaining leaves affected seems to be very important.  I did the same on curl leaf affected nectarines as well and all produced fruit with healthy non curled leaves replacing the affected ones.

All the peaches (and nectarines) have now been picked (and most have been eaten, sad to say!).  We had 3.4kg of O'Henry peaches as well as 6kg of nectarines (5kg from a Goldmine and a kilo from 2 younger dwarf nectarines).  We also picked over 4kg of plums and 2.5kg of Stella cherries.  And we have apples and pears still to ripen/pick (first time fruiting for the latter).  Then I hope we'll have winter citrus.  Home grown fruit is SO much more delicious than supermarket varieties and these days there are so many dwarf or even sub dwarf fruit trees which can be grown in pots and which fit into small gardens or balconies quite easily.  Most of them espalier against a wall or trellis if there's very limited space.

11 February 2015

Maybe I Was Wrong!

This morning's young "male" koala just might have been a slight misidentification on my part!

Classic koala pose!

I think this is a young male (there was typical male koala bellowing last night).