Monday, August 27

Yarra Wattle




At the time of Federation in Australia in 1901, the wattle was considered the national flower as it was found in all states and territories. Its golden colour was linked to prosperity and the spirit of the emerging nation. Golden Wattle Acacia pycnantha became our national floral emblem in 1988 and floral tributes are often seen at funerals and were evident at those of the Bali bombings.

Walter Withers was a famous Australian landscape painter who in his later years owned a property in Eltham. He painted many scenes at that time in history. Several of his paintings were of scenes similar to the above photos taken recently of wattle flowering on the banks of the Yarra at nearby Warrandyte. Prints of his pictures and history are interspersed along its banks which add interest for walkers. The Yarra is often said to be flowing upside down because of its muddy appearances as it carries suspended silt.

With these facts in mind I have composed some verse

River you reflect our first spring rays
Wattle symbol our first nations praise
Withers surveyed in morning haze
Wattle blooms a picture to gaze

Withers heeded nature’s spring call
Mixed vibrant colours for us to adore
Painted a picture of natures embrace
Paintings resplendent of new nations place

The rivers currents still flow upside down
From mountain streams to city, ocean bound
Withers pictures now prints on the banks
Landscapes he painted put spring in our steps
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11 comments:

Val said...

Hi Lindsay!
Love the photos of wattles along the Yarra. I must get to Westerfolds to do a walk soon.

Regards to Ann!

laura said...

I had never heard of wattles and never an ode to wattles. Very nice.

The tree in the third picture looks absolutely majestic.

Josie said...

Oh, that's lovely. You're quite the poet.

And what GORGEOUS pictures. For some reason, I particularly love rivers. I learned to swim in a river that looks very much like the one in your photographs.

Rachael Byrnes said...

beautiful pictures and a splendid poem to go with them. Happy fathers day! Hope your having a fabulous day.

lindsaylobe said...

Hi Val,Laura,Josie, & Rachael~
We went on a short bushwalk recently and the Wattles were in full bloom. It's been exceptionally good weather of late. In summer when hot it's not unusual to see folk cooling down in the river near Warrandtye.
Best wishes

Gina E. said...

Hi Lindsay,
These are excellent photos of a beautiful part of Melbourne - our own muddy but lovely Yarra! I'm about to post some photos at Patra's Other Place of my Aussie Wattle which has just started flowering - it was only planted last year!
Thank you for your comments about my job situation, and yes please - I would love any support, especially from another local! Can you email me direct? I don't have your email addy, but mine is on my profile.
Cheers.

lindsaylobe said...

Hi Gina
I have emailed you ~in case of any mix up my email is rach3095@ozemail.com.au
~l look forward to hearing from you and would be pleased to assist.

Best wishes

Lee said...

Lovely post, Lindsay...makes me feel homesick, even though I am "home". :)

Thanks....:)

grannyfiddler said...

so, was the original wattle fence actually made with wattles? around here, willows are used. it'll be warming up round you, as we cool off here on the other side of the globe. our willows are beginning to change color with the first of the fall frosts.

lindsaylobe said...

Hi Le & Granny F ~Wattle fencing is used for enclosures for orchards and animals as live wattle fences can be seen in paddocks, cemeteries, public parks, reserves, sports grounds, railway stations, besides roads and practically anywhere. Live wattle fences are useful on river banks to curtail erosion and give excellent protection against fires.

grannyfiddler said...

LIVE wattle fences.... ooooooh! now you've really got my imagination going full speed! what i've seen called wattle locally, was willow twigs woven in kind of a fence-mat. there was a restaurant in Edmonton or Calgary that had one around the outdoor patio for a few years. sadly,it seemed to be a favorite target for vandals.