Melaleucas smell good in November

Melaleucas smell good in November

JUNE 2015 | Nell Carr

VISITORS TO the Tamar Wetlands reserve will have their attention drawn to a few remnant clumps of Swamp Paperbarks (Melaleuca ericifolia), as they are considered to be one of our many threatened native species.

So many of our farmland creeks have been stripped of their riparian vegetation, often to be replaced by the invasive crack willow.

Paperbark flowers have a delightful perfume in November, and are worth growing just for that. They do not have a long life, but rely on perennial regrowth from suckers and seedlings.

Stock should be excluded from creeks where remnants of these threatened native understorey species remain.

Paperbarks are of course, not suitable for suburban gardens, because of their shade, an inconvenience for neighbours.

Our native Leptospermums, such as L. lanigerum (Woolly Tea Tree), for wet areas, and L. scoparium (Manuka), for drier areas, should find a place in the native garden in suburbia.

These are easily propagated from seed, and there is an exclusively native plant nursery in Northern Tasmania.

Seeds can also be saved from the cones of the Yellow Bottlebrush (Callistemon pallidus), and the Silver Banksia (B.Marginata).

In the Vegetable garden.
The gardening books say that garden peas, both dwarf and climbing, may be sown in June. However, they should be sown in a bed which does not get the early morning sun, to avoid being cut when in flower by a late frost. When the fronds of asparagus turn yellow, it is time to cut them down to ground level. These can be placed in the compost.