Saturday, August 10, 2013

Lance-leafed Hovea

Hovea lanceolata
August is purple and gold time, for our local wildflowers. Wattles are everywhere, and the hovea are painting the countryside with patches of purple. I found these growing on a hillside at Gowrie Junction.

The flowers are tiny, but so many are produced that they make a great show.

Despite its name,  this plant’s leaves are often strap-shaped (lorate) rather than lanceolate (a word which means shaped like a lance – wider near the base of the leaf and coming to a point at the tip).
They have the rusty-furry backs which are found in so many species of hovea.

Like most hoveas, they are rather wispy plants, looking their best if grouped in multiples. For gardeners, more plants are easy to create from seed collected in early summer. It needs pre-sowing treatment to break the hard seedcoats. Putting the seeds in a coffee cup and pouring boiling water over them, then leaving them to soak overnight usually does the trick.


J Gray said...

Beautiful! Are these the same as the ones growing on Kingsthorpe Mountain on the lookout walking track at the base of the mountain? I photographed them in August last year and they were beautiful.

Patricia Gardner said...

It's been a while since I've been up Kingsthorpe Hill, so I can't remember. You'd expect they would be the same, though, as it's not too far from the site where I took these photos.
They're lovely plants, aren't they? Such brilliant colour!. I'm going to plant more of them, but will group them closer together, I think, for a more intense display.