Friday, August 31, 2007

Wattle Day - September 1

Along the back fence are growing tall wattle trees. The bane of our lives once the seed pods begin to fall later in summer – and the tiny twigs and leaves are a constant problem in the filter which cleans the pool. The seeds spread everywhere – even between the paving tiles and tiny cracks wherever they can squeeze, only to sprout in abundance all through the year. They were planted by the water utility people after they reclaimed the land at the back of our place. They grow very tall, at least 30 to 35 feet, are not a particularly stable tree and only last perhaps up to 10 years before they topple over, they are a positive pain in the butt!

So why are they planted in the first place? Well I guess mainly because they grow quickly, and to boot, their yellow fluffy flower balls have become the national flower of Australia. It’s adoption as the national flower appears to be confirmed by its introduction into the design of the Australian armorial bearings in 1912. Although its popularity was evident for much of the 20th century, it wasn’t until 1988, the year of Australia’s bicentenary, that it was proclaimed as the national floral emblem. Wattles are always associated here with the coming of Spring and in 1992, the 1 September was formally declared ‘National Wattle Day.’

Australians representing their country in international sporting events usually wear the national colours of green and gold which is said to be based on wattle foliage and flower colour and they are also seen as being symbolic of Australia.

But despite it being 1st of September and therefore Wattle Day here ‘downunder,’ I was just thinking, it will be a great day in my back yard when these particular trees succumb to a really strong wind and turn their roots up towards the heavens!


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