FOR OUTBACK HISTORY, HOSPITALITY & NATURE
PHONE (08) 99 635827
TWO SPECIAL PLANTS:
Banksia rosserae (G. Williamson).
In the early 1990's, Ann Pilkington had commenced germination trials on plants growing on Kirkalocka Station in an effort to identify those most suited to the cut flower market. She shared her knowledge with many botanists and plant enthusiasts over the years, until finally in 2002, Olde & Marriott formally described and named two new plants- Grevillea kirkalocka and Banksia rosserae. Ann meanwhile had extracted the seed after burning the pod in a fire and managed to successfully germinate the banksia.
Grevillea enthusiast John Cullen had visited Kirkalocka during his search for an undescribed grevillea listed in the writings of government botanist Charles Gardner. It was fitting then, that both John and WA native plant authority George Lullfitz, (a protégé of Charles Gardner) were the first to view the banksias in flower at the remote site on Kirkalocka in May 2006. Rain bearing depressions which followed tropical Cyclones Clare, Emma and Glenda prompted the flowering, when a total of 290.6 mls of rain was recorded in the first four months of that year.
World renouned botanical artist Celia Rosser after whom the plant is named, visited soon after and was finally able to complete her illustration of the banksia's flowering habit, thus ending four years of intense speculation regarding the colour. A botanists' stampede to Kirkalocka resulted!
People continue to be intrigued by this rare & ancient plant, which is so geographically isolated from all the other "coastal" banksias in WA.
The grevillea is an amazing plant, too. It is low growing & extremely prickly. The brilliant red flower drips with nectar, attracting ants & birds when in bloom.
Grevillia kirkalocka (T. Smith).
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Website : www.kirkalocka.com
Telephone : (08) 99 635 827
PO Box 218, MOUNT MAGNET WA 6638