A few weeks ago now I ordered some Silver Wattle seeds.
Silver Wattle - Acacia dealbata - is a plant of our local forest. It is very pretty, especially when in flower with masses of yellow puff ball flowers against grey-green delicate fern-like foliage. But best of all it is somewhat fire retardant and that is the main reason I decided to put more in - as a native buffer between our house and the Eucalyptus forest part of our property to the south and west of the house.
Contrary to the label, I found that the seeds popped up much more quickly than 10-21 days once they had been successfully heat treated. There hasn't been a great germination rate - probably less than 50%.
I also collected some seeds from the trees nearby but most of our Silver Wattles are quite immature and many didn't have seed pods so ordering them in was the way to go. The seeds collected locally have actually been harder to raise than those I bought. Odd hey? Shouldn't the local ones be better suited to local conditions?
Their baby leaves are so pretty and delicate.
A few weeks on and they look like this. They have been coping very well with the very hot weather and dry conditions - they close up their leaves to protect themselves when they get dry.
It feels good to sow the seeds of our own protection - that they are local natives and that they are nitrogen fixers as well is an added bonus. It wont take long before they are put to work protecting us - they grow so fast. I am planning to mix them with another local native fire retarder - the kurrajong. I think it will be a very pretty forest to have at our backs.
Do you know of other fire retarders? I know that any deciduous plant is somewhat fire retarding so the fruit trees I am planning will be part of our fire protection plan as well.
Stay safe and fire-proof everyone. And thanks everyone for your thoughts and best wishes yesterday, they were really appreciated!