by Robert Whyte
I'm sure there are a lot more plants beginning with A than with X or Z. Those poor cousin letters down at the bottom of the alphabet hardly get a mention.
Lets look at the Zeds in Enoggera species. We have Zanthoxylum Brachyacanthum (Thorny yellow-wood) Zehneria Cunninghamii (Slender cucumber) Zieria Smithii (Sandfly zieria) and Zornia Muriculata (Zornia).
I know them all intimately - NOT. I've seen Slender Cucumber in a book once and even thought we had a specimen, but it turned out to be an Einadia. Harumph.
As for Ys - the only Y recorded by Peter Young in Brisbane Forest Park is Youngia (coincidence?) Japonica. Not a forest giant, by any means. In fact it's a daisy. A herb to 60cm. Double harumph. In my photo collection the only Y I have is "Yellow Slime Mould".
Thank goodness for the Xanthorrheas (Grass Trees)! At least everybody knows these icons of the Australian bush.
But lets face it - if you were to pick a letter, you really can't go past A. In the Enoggera catchment there are 109 plants starting with A in Peter Young's list, and even though some of the Austromyrtus species have been renamed in honour of Wayne Goss (Gossia), there are still over 100.
And the A's have some of the biggest and most beautiful. The cream rises to the top, as they say.
Araucaria Cunninghamii (Hoop Pine) for example. At 60m probably our tallest tree. Majestic. And Alectryons - marvellous plants. Edible, and native insects that feed on it might be able to be trained to eat Balloon Vine.
And who can remain unmoved at the beautiful mimic mistletoe Amylotheca Dictyophleba. Just saying the name is pure pleasure.
Aphananthe Philippinensis has been a long time favourite. Tough as old boots, bush tucker, slow growing - a good sign of a quality remnant.
OK, if you're still with me and I haven't given you a case of the Zeds (snore) with all this plant talk, let me confess.
The real reason my favourite plant begins with A is the website. I've just about finished doing up good descriptions of all the Enoggera species beginning with A in our database. Not complete - only the ones with photographs. Still a good number.
Here are links to some of them. Have a squiz. You may be surprised!
- Abutilon Oxycarpum (MALVACEAE) Flannel Weed
- Acacia Irrorata (MIMOSACEAE) Green Wattle, Blueskin
- Acacia Complanata (MIMOSACEAE) Flat-stemmed Wattle
- Acacia Concurrens (MIMOSACEAE) Black Wattle, Curracabah
- Acacia Disparrima - Hickory Wattle
- Acacia Falcata (MIMOSACEAE) Sickle Wattle
- Acacia Fimbriata (MIMOSACEAE) Brisbane Wattle
- Acacia Melanoxylon (MIMOSACEAE) Blackwood
- Acacia Perangusta (MIMOSACEAE) Eprapah Wattle
- Acacia Podalyriifolia (MIMOSACEAE) Silver Wattle, Mt Morgan wattle
- Acacia Ulicifolia (MIMOSACEAE) Prickly Moses, Juniper Wattle
- Acalypha Nemorum (EUPHORBIACEAE) Hairy Acalypha
- Acmena Ingens (MYRTACEAE) Red Apple
- Acmena Smithii (MYRTACEAE) Lilly Pilly
- Acronychia Laevis (RUTACEAE) Glossy Achronychia, hard aspen
- Acronychia Oblongifolia (RUTACEAE) Common Acronychia, white aspen, southern lemon aspen
- Adiantum Atroviride (ADIANTACEAE) Common Maidenhair
- Adiantum Formosum (ADIANTACEAE) Black Stem, Black Stem Maidenhair, Giant Maidenhair
- Adiantum Hispidulum - Rough Maidenhair Fern
- Ailanthus Triphysa (SIMAROUBACEAE) White Bean, White Sirus
- Ajuga Australis (LAMIACEAE) Australian Bugle
- Alchornea Ilicifolia (EUPHORBIACEAE) Native Holly
- Alectryon Subcinereus (SAPINDACEAE) Wild Quince
- Alectryon Tomentosus (SAPINDACEAE) Hairy Alectryon
- Alocasia Brisbanensis (ARACEAE) Cunjevoi
- Alphitonia Excelsa (RHAMNACEAE) Red Ash
- Alpinia Caerulea (ZINGIBERACEAE) Native Ginger, Blue Berry Ginger
- Amylotheca Dictyophleba (LORANTHACEAE) Scrub Mistletoe
- Angophora Subvelutina (MYRTACEAE) Red Apple
- Anthocarapa Nitidula (MELIACEAE) Incensewood
- Aphananthe Philippinensis (ULMACEAE) Rough Leaved Elm, Native Elm
- Aphanopetalum Resinosum (CUNONIACEAE) Shiny Leaved Gum Vine
- Araucaria Bidwillii (ARAUCARIACEAE) Bunya Pine.
- Araucaria Cunninghamii (ARAUCARIACEAE) Hoop Pine
- Archontophoenix Cunninghamiana - Bangalow Palm, Piccabeen Palm
- Argyrodendron Trifoliolatum (STERCULIACEAE) White Booyong
- Arundinella Nepalensis - Reedgrass
- Asplenium Australasicum - Bird's Nest Fern, Crow's Nest Fern
- Auranticarpa Rhombifolia - Diamond-Leaved Pittosporum
- Ausromyrtus Dulcis (MYRTACEAE) - Midgin, Midyim (berry)
- Austrosteenisia Blackii - Blood Vine