The Mullewa District comes alive in late winter and spring each year, when dramatic displays of wildflowers brighten the bushland and road verges. Everlastings form vivid swaying carpets across expansive plains, especially in pastoral areas, while shrubs and small trees spring to life in a blaze of colour. And, of course, the wreath flower is the star attraction.
Lechenaultia macrantha is known as the wreath flower because of its unusual circular shape. It grows well in disturbed areas, and so is commonly found on road verges, gravel pits or areas that have been recently burnt. The wreath flower’s growth patterns are very mysterious, the colours vary each year from almost pure white, to pink, orange and red and nobody really understands why they grow where they grow. Most year’s they flower between August and October, but this is determined by seasonal rainfall and other climatic events out of our control. Areas east of Mullewa, around Pindar (mainly on the Pindar-Beringarra Road) and through the farming country around Tardun and Canna often have excellent displays – but it’s best to ask at the Visitor Centre for up-to-date information.
The Mullewa region is so rich in wildflower species because it straddles both geological and climatic transition zones. This produces great diversity across varying soil types and rainfall/temperature zones. Mullewa also contains both farmland, where human activity provides the “disturbance” favoured by many species, and vast pastoral properties, where nature remains little changed.
Plants of the Asteraceae or daisy family are short-lived annual herbs with soft papery flowers. Most everlastings fall into this family. Star species in the Mullewa area include the pink star everlasting (Schoenia cassiniana), the pom-pom everlasting (Cephalipterum drummondii), the splendid everlasting (Rhodanthe chlorocephalum splendida) and the pink sunray (Rhodanthe manglesii). The country east to Yalgoo and south-east to Payne’s Find is renowned for its everlastings – but again, ask at the Visitor Centre for current information.
Please remember, do not pick the wildflowers, they are protected.