Deserts

Bumper wildflower season in outback sets deserts blooming

This year’s wildflower season has been one of the best thanks to a good wet season at the end of 2020 and into 2021.

Bryce Shannon from the Alice Springs Desert Park botany section said there was a variety of wildflowers predominantly in the sand country at the park.

“We’ve got Brachyscomes, Davenport daisies, salt spoon daisies, and a few other species that pop up through,” he said.

“The blue pincushions, or Brunonias, are rare due to the fact that they have a blue flower.

blue flower growing from red dirt

Blue pin cushion is a rare flower thanks to its colour.(

ABC Alice Springs: Emma Haskin

)

Mr Shannon said that the wildflowers had responded well to the recent climatic conditions.

“We’ve had self-germination, we’ve had seed scatter, and we’ve had minimal planting from the nursery,” he said.

“We’ve had good coverage. We’ve had a nice diversity of colour, getting right around sand country as well.”

Large white flower with oversized yellow centre

One of the many poached egg daisies growing at the Alice Springs Desert Park.(

ABC Alice Springs: Emma Haskin

)

Seed collection

Mr Shannon said it was important to harvest flower seeds for coming years.

Mr Shannon said he hoped it would rain next year and that the naturally-occurring seeds will grow.

field of flowers with tree and rocky mountain in the background

Alice Springs Desert Park has a field of wildflowers.(

ABC Alice Springs: Emma Haskin

)

“If that [rain] event doesn’t happen we’ll come through and do soil preparation with the seed scatter from the seeds we’ve collected from this season and the previous season or two,” he said.

“Some of the species like the salt spoon daisies and the blue pincushions, along with the Davenport daisy which we can’t get to germinate … we’ll get those growing in our nursery,” he said.

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