A Tale Of A Tailflower

Gee – I missed a Willingkinswinkins post this week – manyana!  Today I’ll tell you the tale of the Sticky Tailflower that is native to the south coast of Western Australia and knows how to make the best of a sticky situation.

Anthocercis Viscosa, Albany, WA

Anthocercis Viscosa, Albany, WA

I took these photos of a clump of Sticky Tailflower bushes in the coastal ranges of the beautiful Albany region.  The bushes are growing in the elevated granite outcrops where there is good drainage but little soil.  The benefits of such a harsh environment are restricted competition and moisture  well into dry periods, as their roots penetrate fissures deep into the rocks.  The benefit to me is the beautiful flowers:

Sticky Tailflower Bush, Albany, WA

Sticky Tailflower Bush, Albany, WA

The ‘sticky’ part of their name relates to the leaves.  The slightly sticky foliage helps to protect the plant from the salt in the air.  I’ve yet to discover the ‘tail’ of the flower!  I examined it closely when I painted it in coloured pencils as the green part of my WA Rainbow series.

WA Rainbow - Green

WA Rainbow – Green

Maybe it’s because the flower buds can be seen to represent a flared tail end?

The flowers are about 5cm / 2 inches in diameter with large, waxy petals.

The bush can be cultivated but it is thought to be toxic to stock – another way for it to beat adversity!

I’ll leave you today to ponder a quote on adversity from Mark Twain:

By trying we can easily endure adversity.  Another man’s I mean.


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