This popular walk organised by the Friends every spring always attracts a large group of interested people and this year was no exception.
The weather was cool and sunny, and a record number of 40 people, including children, met at the Fifth Avenue entrance to O’Donohue’s heathland for a circuit walk of 1.5 kms.
The heathlands were just a mass of colour.
Because of the larger number of participants, it was decided to divide into four groups each with a leader, to enable orderly access along the walking track.
It was great to see so many children in the group who showed an obvious interest in the flowers and were also keen to identify them from the field guides.
There were so many Trigger Plants flowering and Margaret demonstrated the mechanism this special plant has for pollination.
Trigger demonstration by Margaret
The choice of venue was an excellent one. The profusion of flowering plants throughout the heathland provided an extremely colourful display including Showy Parrot-pea, Dwarf Bush Pea, Pink Bells, Guinea-flowers, Cypress Daisy-bush, Common and Woolly Rice-flowers, Trigger Plants, Twining Fringed Lilies, Sundews and many more.
Twining Fringed Lilies
There was insufficient sun and warmth for the flowers on the magnificent large Sun Orchid to open up, but the stalks and buds were impressive. Large numbers of Donkey and Waxlip Orchids were spread throughout.
Rabbit Ears and Twisted Sun Orchids were also plentiful but not prepared to open in the cooler conditions We were able to view some Angahook Caledenias near the final section of the wildflower walk.
Following lunch at the ANGAIR office, for those who wanted more, a short trip out to Forest Road gave people an opportunity to walk among the different species of orchids.
Looking at orchies at Forest Road
Large White spiders, Small Green-combs, Heart-lipped, Eastern Mantis Spider Orchids and Tall Leek Orchids.
Large White Spiders
Tall Leek Orchid
Considering the unpredictable Spring weather this year, we were fortunate to be able to spend a fine day in the heathland with so many interested and enthusiastic people. Many expressed appreciation for the opportunity to learn more about our special local flowers.
Report by Kaye Traynor.