Carolyn’s Corner – December 2014

What does success look like? We know we are making a difference when the plants survive (big tick), and an even bigger tick when the seedlings we plant flower and spread their seed allowing for natural recruitment. Nature (birds, wind and water) help us out, as long as we keep the weeds down, to prevent competition.  Examples of plants that are flowering and have set seed on site include Goodenia amplexans, Vittidinia sp, Lotus australis, Dianella, Scaevola and all of the grasses (wallaby, kangaroo, spear grass, poa).

Those passing by the plantings near the ferry terminal will notice the area has been slashed & weeded to help out the new plants.

Photos Liz Cousins, Cape Jervis (Goodenia, Lotus, Dianella)


Next get together, Sat 6 (10am-4pm)  & Sun 7 Dec (9am-12noon)

  • Seed collecting & weeding.

We welcome new volunteers, even an hour or two is a big help.

Training & cake provided. Contact Carolyn Schultz 0423 213 481.

Plant of the Month – December 2014


(Hakea vittata)

(Photos: E. Cousins; habit; close-up of flowering stem; Cape Jervis)

Another spring flowering shrub, good for sandy or limestone soils. It can look a bit sprawly, but can also grow up to head high. From August to November, spider-like white flowers occur in clusters along the stems, at the base of the leaves. Hakeas can be distinguished from grevilleas, which they are very much like, by their woody seed pods. The seed pods of the striped hakea have two little horns, and lengthwise markings (vittatus means ‘longitudinally striped’ in Latin). Leaves are thin cylinders, no more than 1.5mm wide, and appear alternately on the stems. What look like clusters of tiny leaves on those stems might be ‘witches broom’ galls instead…these are caused when branches are infected by a rust fungus.

Weed of the Month – December 2014


(Coprosma repens)


(Photos: E. Cousins & C. Schultz; growth habit, close-up of glossy leaves, female flower, male flower; Cape Jervis)

There are many lovely Coprosma cultivars sold at garden centres, and they make very attractive garden plants. The one pictured here though, Coprosma repens, with its big, oval, glossy green leaves, is prohibited from sale.  It is not one of the major “declared weeds” but it has naturalized in coastal areas of southern and south eastern Australia. There are several 2 metre tall specimens of this spreading shrub on the coastal reserve at Cape Jervis. Infestations often start under trees, from birds dropping seeds. There are distinct male/female forms of the small flowers, normally occurring on separate plants. In December, have a gander: work out if the flowers you see are lads or lasses!

(Hint: the female flowers have a ‘style’ with 2 thick branches; see photo above.)