Each year on the 1st September we celebrate Wattles. They are our National Flower and close to the heart of many Australians. This year there’s even a bunch of cities around the country lighting up local bridges, monuments, fountains and sculptures on Wednesday…including the Story Bridge in Brisbane.
In 1988 the Gold Wattle Acacia pycnatha, was officially gazette as the National Floral Emblem, but the celebration of the wattle day begain in NSW in 1910, and springs were sold throughout the first World War to raise money for troops overseas.
Closer to home, you can celebrate Wattle Day by planting your very own plant floral emblem. Alternatively go for a walk through the bush – they are looking wonderful now and grow everywhere across Australia including your local LGA.
Top Tips for Wattles
- Plant them where you need instant screening – they are fabulous and fast growing and can block out those neighbours’ in no time.
- Wattles help fix and store nitrogen in the soil as the are members of the pea family and have this unique ability to feed the soil.
- Many wattles have symbiotic relationships with insects and butterflies, others are wonderful food sources for birds. When you plant a wattle, you plant habitat.
- Potted dwarf wattles and grafted weeping wattles are perfect for pots. Check out Acacia cognata ‘Limelight’, Acacia baileyana ‘Prostrata’ as a spillover plant.
- Wattles can be beautiful foliage plants as well as flowering plants. Acacia baileyana ‘Purpurea’ has gorgeous plum foliage and other varieties have gold or silver leaves.
DID YOU KNOW? Wattle and Daub, which was a building material during the colonial times, was not actually made from Wattle – it was Callicoma sp.
By: Meredith Kirton