It was such a lovely, sunny day today, I couldn’t resist stopping by the roadside to photograph this seemingly early flush of Spring. Lots of wattles are flowering, as well as grevilleas and lilies. Interestingly, as the road climbs off the plains and the environment changes, the wattles change. At lower altitude you find the Hedge Wattle (Acacia paradoxa) and the Early Black Wattle (A. decurrens, introduced in this area). Then as you start climbing (the long hill) you see Varnish Wattle (A. verniciflua), Cat’s Claw Grevillea (G. alpina) and Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca) on the drier, west facing escarpment.
Once up top, about 2-300 m above the plain, the vegetation is completely different. The road passes alongside a wet gully where Blackwood (A. melanoxylon) stands are laden with their very pale-yellow flowers. At this point I spied a pair of Wedgetail Eagles being harassed by Magpies and Ravens. A little further along, the Purple Coral Pea (Hardenbergia violacea) flourishes on a rocky roadside cutting. Also known as Native sarsaparilla, this is one of the showiest, best known and most widespread of our local peas.
Silver Wattle (A. dealbata) and Ovens Wattle (A. pravissima) round out the wattles you can see on this short drive. And if you take the time to stop and look, there are plenty more treasures in the bush, especially where the road cuts through the Garden Range Flora & Fauna Reserve, below the Waterhouse Reservoir.
It turned out to be a long trip home and included a young Echidna and a dead Red Fox. All the shots are are in the slide show, below, and they are in the order you’d see them when you drive up the hill from Euroa. Use the right, left & pause buttons in the slideshow window to adjust viewing.