Vickie and Murray were visiting from Queensland and wanted to get out to see some of Perth’s wildflower and parklands. They booked on a 4 hour Wildflower, Waterfall and Wildlife tour which was a shortened version of the one advertised on the tours page. The shortening of the tour meant that the Zig Zag Scenic drive was taken out of the 5 hour tour package as Vickie was keen to see Wildflowers and the two waterfalls as they were flowing well and Queensland is in the middle of a terrible drought.
First stop was the Wildflowers in the Ellis Brook Valley which is part of Banyowla Regional Park. On the drive into the park we saw a large group of Western Grey Kangaroos, Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos and Baudin’s Black-Cockatoos. The wildflowers are not at their peak yet in August but there were still a lot of wildflowers blooming beautifully. Parts of the distant hillside at Ellis Brook were whitened with the many white flowering hakeas (Hakea Trifurcata and Hakea lissocarpha).
But there was a lot of other colourful blooms. Yellow was well represented with Buttercups (Hibbertia hypericoides), Golden Hibbertia (Hibbertia aurea), Many-flowered Honeysuckle (Lambertia multiflora) and Prickly Moses (Acacia pulchella), all covered in bright yellow flowers. The dense purple flowerings of Prickly Hovea (Hovea pungens) and Native Wisteria (Hardenbergia comptoniana) are always hard to ignore! There were stunning red flowers on the Candle Cranberry (Astroloma filiosum), Moss-leaved Heath (Astroloma ciliatum) and Fushia Grevillea (Grevillea bipinnatifida). Vickie was taken with the beautiful soft pink grey flowers of Granite Petrophile (Petrophile biloba) and we found one bush of Pincushion Coneflower (Isopogon dubius) covered in bright pink flowers. Many other Pincushion coneflowers were covered in buds as were the Verticordia acerosa indicating we are weeks away from the hillside being covered in yellow with dots of bright pink. We found several orchids out including the Bluebeards (Cyanicula deformis), Midge Orchid (Cyrtostylis huegelii) and Common Donkey Orchid (Diuris corymbosa).
We went to the Sixty Foot Falls in Banyowla Regional park and walked up to the first lookout. The falls are flowing well and were lit in beautiful sunshine while we were there. We were very lucky too that there was only one group of other people in the area so virtually had the place to ourselves! This enabled us to relax and enjoy the sights, sounds and atmosphere to the fullest!
Next we had afternoon tea at Bickley Brook Reservoir and on the way there saw another much larger group of Western Grey Kangaroos! At Bickley Brook the water was flowing well and it was nice to hear its cascade as we enjoyed out drinks and snacks while be entertained by some caroling Australian Magpies!
Our final stop was the Lesmurdie Falls in Lesmurdie National Park. The Falls are just in spectacular form this year as there has been good rains. The tracks to the waterfall were surrounded with flowering Hakeas and Karri Hazel (Trymalium odoratissimum). These falls are the best in Perth and it was surprising that there were only a few people there enjoying the spectacular scenary. Thanks to Vickie and Murray for their wonderful company and for booking on this new nature tour being offered by Perth Birds and Bush!