Thursday, 28 February 2013


The golden pendas (Xanthostemum chrysantha) are about to flower. The one in front of the office window is covered in yellow buds and a lot of impatient insects. They won't have long to wait.

Golden penda is native to NE Queensland. A popular street tree, it is often mixed with South American tibouchina, which flowers at the same time. The combination of gold and purple is something to behold and rivals the spectacular red and mauve of flame trees and jacarandas at Christmas.

Most of the native pendas are lowland species, among them the stunning crimson penda (X. youngii), which is restricted to coastal sand on Cape York Peninsula, and the ice-green X. formosus of the Daintree region. I have no hope of growing the crimson penda here, but other species might be suitable. All of them are beautiful plants.

(I think I hid my enthusiasm well.)

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