South African Flora
|The Flora of South Africa is popular all around the world and these South African plants -- Leucospermums, Proteas, Aloes and Strelitzias were a feature of the original design of the Botanic Garden in Kings Park, Perth, Western Australia. Nine additional photos taken in the African Savannah Area of Perth Zoo added to album.
|One species of prickly pear was first brought to Australia with the First Fleet to help establish an industry in cochineal – the red dye used to colour the coats of the British soldiers. The dye was extracted from the cochineal beetle, which lives and feeds on prickly pear. By the late 19th century a different species of prickly pear had spread out of control in New South Wales and Queensland, and by the 1920s covered more than 25 million hectares. The spiky cactus formed dense stands that made the areas it infested nearly impossible to raise animals on, driving many farmers from their land. Various methods of chemical and physical control of the cactus were tried without much success. In 1926, the caterpillars of the Argentinian Cactoblastis moth were first released into affected areas. The moth larvae burrow into and eat the cactus, eventually killing it. Cactoblastis was a great success, and in less than 10 years after its introduction the prickly pear population had been brought largely under control. Prickly Pear is a Noxious Weed in Australia.
Queen Of The Night Cactus
|Epiphyllum oxypetalum is an erect, then pendent, periennial cactus which produces freely branching, flattened stems. It bears nocturnal, tubular, white flowers which are magnificently perfumed. Each of the beautiful flowers only lasts just one night.
The popular Hibiscus is a member of the mallow (Malvaceae) family and this genus contains over 200 annual or perennial herbs, shrubs, or trees. They are widely distributed throughout warm temperate, subtropical, and tropical regions of the world. The epitome of tropical plants, they feature lush foliage and large flamboyant blooms in vibrant colors. In their native regions, these plants were grown not only for their great beauty, but also for their edible leaves and flowers. Hibiscus species are relatively easy to grow, and while often used as a colorful stand-alone feature in the garden, some species can be trimmed to shape and make effective hedging or screening plants. Enjoy this colourful collection of Hibiscus blooms.