I love Mallees, obviously hence my business name, and Western Australia has an amazing array of these characteristic Eucalypts. As part of my recent trip to WA I stayed in an area called Dryandra, a short drive south east of Perth. We stayed in the Dryandra Forest and within this area there was the iconic Eucalpytus rodantha or Rose Mallee.
I found a stand of these in a arboretum near where we were staying, they varied in colour from deep blood red through to lighter pinks. They were growing in soil that was damp with recent rains and didn’t appear to be draining very well.
Eucalyptus rhodantha grows to about 4 metres tall and has a low spreading habit as you can see above, it grows well in Western Australia with hot dry summers and cool wet winters, not worth even trying here on the east coast of Australia. I love the huge gum nuts it produces.
Another really gorgeous Mallee in the Arboretum was the book leaf Mallee or Eucalyptus kruseana, this Eucalypt has the flowers squeezed in-between the leaves like the pages of a book.
It also produces rather attractive gum nuts, which are showy in their own way.
Eucalyptus kruseana is endemic to only three hilly areas around Kalgoorlie in Western Australia, it will be happy to grow in central and south Australia. This Mallee also has very showy peeling bark and the foliage is popular for florists.
In the images below you can see Eucalyptus orbifolia, this one interests me as there is a new grafted Eucalyptus ‘Coral Princess’ grafted ceasia x orbifolia, that came on the market a couple of years ago.
These specimens were only lightly flowering, but these small numbers of opening buds were already attracting plenty of bees.
And again, very cool gum nuts 😉
The striking leaves are contrast beautifully with the red stems, some of the new leaves are even love heart shaped.
Eucalyptus orbifolia has very similar bark to Eucalyptus ceasia, maybe thats why they crossed them? I am not sure but ‘Coral Princess’ has pink flower in an orbifolia shape, with orbifolia leaves.
And last but not least there was a forest of Eucalyptus caesia, growing in healthy clumps, its just not fair!
So hard to grow here! Seeing all these happy Mallees really did make me realise that one day I will need to have a garden in Western Australia 🙂