At this time of the year, I really feel like I am giving back to nature, more than any other time of the year. I pull my car into the carport and am greeted by the noisy Willy Wag tails, these cheeky little black and white birds, that dart in and out of my garden shrubs collecting flying insects and aphids on the roses.
There’s a very loud humming coming from the three Dombeya burgessiae, that I planted about 4 years ago. In a few short years, they have grown, to create a wonderful dense screen to hide the less than attractive house next door.
This is a South African plant, which was named after the French botanist Joseph Dombey, who collected plants in South America and that blooms in abundance in Perth at this time of the year. Apparently, the leaves and stems are a favourite food of the Black Rhino which as you can imagine we do not see frequently in suburban Perth.
It is just outside our bedroom window and right now is in full bloom and there are so many bees it is moving and there’s no breeze!
The large matt dark green, “grape leaf shaped” leaves provide a lush backdrop to the clusters of heavily scented white flowers.
In Summer, it shelters the front of our house from the hot rising sun coming up from the east and in Autumn thanks us for the extra water it received during the hot months and rewards us with the stunning white blooms and food for an entire hive of bees.
At the end of the flowering season, the white flowers turn to a rust shade of brown and are attractive in their own right.
It is very easy to prune and keep tidy, grows fast, requires little or no care and provides a wonderful habitat for small birds and bees-I really don’t know why we don’t see more of these in Perth gardens.