Week 4 October 2001: This week there was great rejoicing at Yallaroo. We have a Braidwood Brilliant hybrid in a large pot and it has presented us with a small flower. Braidwood Brilliant is a hybrid whose parents are Telopea speciosissima the Sydney Waratah and Telopea mongaensis, a species from Southern NSW. We now expect great things of this plant.
A pair of Crimson Rosellas may be using one of our parrot nesting boxes. Two fledgling Blue Wrens have left their nest in one of our saltbushes (Rhagodia sp).
We have had a problem with one of our Banksia serrata. This 2 metre high plant has developed yellow leaves. This indicates a nutrient deficiency. The prescribed method, of treatment, is to use Iron Chelates. We have found, through bitter experience, that Iron Chelates kills more plants than it cures. We have used soluble fertiliser, such as Thrive or Aquasol, to cure the problem. We have also had success using lawn food. This fertiliser has high nitrogen, low phosphorus and all the trace elements. We used lawn food on our Banksia and after a couple of weeks the plant is looking a lot less jaundiced.
This week we visited friends in Tamworth. They have an interesting mix of natives and exotics in their garden. A number of Western Australian eucalypts are surviving and thriving, a splendid Eremophila with yellow buds that change to pink as the flowers open and a large Grevillea shiressii. This is a rare species from the Central Coast of NSW with attractive bronze-green leaves and inky-blue flowers. This is the only Grevillea with blue flowers. We also swapped some native shrubs for three Eucalyptus pumila. This is a rare mallee for the Hunter Valley of NSW. NSW State Forests are now propagating this beautiful Eucalypt for sale in their nurseries.

Garden Diary