Monday, 10 September 2007
Monday, 3 September 2007
Spring has arrived in Shenton Bushland.
Brian and I were working in Shenton Bushland today. We came across lots of Leafy Sundew (Drosera stolonifera). The sticky droplets glistened in the sun. I couldn't resist taking a photo. Looking at the photo later, I discovered lots of (out of focus) black shapes of insects stuck in the foliage of the plant. Looking up my reference (The Bushland Plants of Kings Park, Western Australia, by Eleanor Bennett, and Patrica Dundas, 1988) I discover that Drosera plants rely on trapped insects to supplement the meagre diet supplied by Western Australia's impoverished soils. The sticky droplets catch unwary insects, and then dissolve the soft parts of the insect, allowing the plant to absorb its nutrients.
We also came across some Blue Lechanaultia (Lechanaultia biloba). This plant is not native to Shenton Bushland, but was introduced with gravel brought in for the Prisoner of War transfer station built in this bushland during WWII. This plant is all that remains of that time, other than a few mounds left when the camp was bulldozed.