Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world.
Through my blog I am
seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.
I am a Freelance Journalist and Photographer based in Bunbury, Western Australia. My published work specialises in Western Australian travel articles and stories about inspiring everyday people. My passion is photography, writing, travel, wildflower and food photography.
I hope you enjoy scrolling through my blog. To visit other pages, please click on the tabs above, or go to my Blog Archive on the side bar. Please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of any of my posts. I value your messages and look forward to hearing from you.If you like my work, and would like to buy a print, or commission me for some work, please go to my "contact me" tab.
Thank you for visiting my blog and helping me "step into the light".

Welcome!

Welcome!
Please click on the image to go to my Red Bubble Store.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Once in 40 years wildflower extravaganza - visiting Lesueur National Park

They say that this year's Western Australian wildflower bloom is the best seen in 40 years. Favourable weather conditions - rain and sun - have brought on a brilliant wildflower extravaganza spreading across our state.  

Western Australia boasts up to 12,000 known species and the Western Australian wildflower season spreads over several months starting from July in the north’s Kimberley region till November in the south. Walking through the bush during spring you will see the browns and greens of the bush erupt in a dazzling display of vibrant colour. Everlasting magic

One of the Australian wattles - genus Acacia
Over the last ten or so years I've been blessed with the opportunity to travel across much of our state and touring, whether it be only a few days or a couple of weeks, during our wildflower season has a big attraction for me, especially since I discovered digital photography and my love for wildflower photography.

You don't need to go far, even a small bush block in suburbia can reveal hidden treasures in spring. Photographing wildflowers    

 In July we discovered the magic of the Kimberley wildflowers - oh the brilliance of those reds, yellows and oranges against those vast Kimberley blue skys and red earth. I blogged about them here - The wildflowers are blooming in the Kimberley

 As we travelled south during August the changing variety of wildflowers followed us. I was hard pressed to not keep saying "stop the car", as I know that walking only a few metres into this wonderland of flowers would reveal hidden treasures I couldn't see from the highway. But I also knew that my travelling companions didn't want to always be "stopping the car".... so sometimes I had to be content with "drive-by shots". 

These yellows and whites are yellow and white everlastings. The whites looked like snow across the ground spreading as far as you could see through the scrub. 


We did however decide to extend our trip by another day and night just so that I could visit Lesueur National Park. 

Named after Charles-Alexandre Lesueur, a natural history artist aboard the French ship Naturaliste during its 1801 expedition, Lesueur National Park covers 26,987 hectares and has a wide range of geological formations, landscapes and soil types. It is a biodiversity hotspot boasting an exceptionally diverse range of flora, with more than 900 species, comprising 10 per cent of the state's known flora, including seven species of declared rare flora, making it an important reserve for flora conservation. Much of Lesueur is covered by low heath, known as Kwongan by Aboriginal people - low scrub that a man can see over.

We approached Lesueur from  the north via the Coorow-Greenhead Road east off the Indian Ocean Drive just north of Greenhead, and then turning south onto Cockleshell Gully Road, or you can approach it from the south via Jurien and the Jurien East Road. The first part of our drive took us along a ridgeline with view of the coast and the Indian Ocean to the west.



From here you turn onto a 18.5 kilometre one-way bitumen road which takes you through the park. There are regular pull-over places where you can park and enjoy the scenery and take photos. The one-way road make these pull-overs very convenient as you don't have to worry about oncoming traffic.

Please note there is a $12 day entry vehicle pass payable by self-registration at the entrance or you can pre-purchase a 12 month WA Parks pass.



About a third of the way along the trail you will come to a day-use area where there is a 400 metre return wheelchair-friendly bitumen path where those less able can enjoy the wildflowers. You can also learn more about Lesueur on the information boards. 

From here you can follow the 2.5km Gardner circuit trail or the more challenging 4km Mt Lesueur walk trail to the summit of Mt Lesueur. Please allow approximately half a day to complete this moderate, at times challenging, walk which requires a good degree of fitness. Bring your own food, water, sun cream, wear a hat, good walking boots and take away your rubbish.


Please make sure you help prevent Dieback (Phytophthora spp.), which can be spread through the transfer of infected soil on your boots,  by cleaning your boots at the boot cleaning station. 



 Even if you decide you don't want to tackle the Mt Lesueur walk there will be plenty to see especially during wildflower time. Below you will see just a small selection.

Please note: I am not a botanist so I can't accurately name these flowers, but I will do my best. Some of them I will just give a family name, whereas others where I have given a botanic name I am fairly sure of their identification. 

 Banksias.... clockwise - Firewood Banksia (Banksia menziesii), either the Hooker's or Acorn Banksia, Violet Banksia (Banksia violacea)



 Coneflowers....

  
Blue Leschenaultia (Lechenaultia biloba), Free-flowering Leschenaultia (Lechanaultia floribunda),  Catspaw, and Mangles Kangaroo Paw (Anigozanthos manglesii)


Reds - left to right from top left - Fringed Bell (Darwinia neildiana), Pink Poker, Grevillea, Bottlebrush, Clawflower, Cockies Tongues (Templetonia retusa), Scarlet Runner or Running Postman (Kennedia prostrata), Murchison Darwinia (Darwinia virescens), and Scarlet Featherflower (Verticordia grandis).



Pinks and purples - Hovea, Purple Tassels (Sowerbaea laxiflora), Blue Tinsel Lily (Calectasia cyanea), Veined Hakea (Hakea neurophylla), Coneflower, Myrtle, Pepper and Salt, Pipe Lilly, Starflower.


Creamy whites - I can't identify the first and last one on the top line, but the middle one is Smokebush, I think the first one on the second line is a Coneflower, White plume Grevillea (Grevillea leucopteris), Clematis, Hakea, Long-Eared Petrophile, Ribbed Hakea


I love the way that Clematis drapes over the bushes. 
 
Clematis


 Petrophile, Dryandra, unknown (bottom left) and Banjine. 



Yellows - Horned Poison Bush (Gastrolobium polystachyum), Chittick, Catspaw, Wattle, Cottonheads, Hibbertia, Pea family, Spiny Synaphea (Synaphea spinulosa), Tailflower.


And maybe even orchids hiding in the undergrowth



And this one below which I promised last week to identify? This is Murchison Darwinia (Darwinea virescens), listed as uncommon in my Wildflower identification book, although as not threatened on DEPAW-Florabase. Grows in white or yellow sand in heathlands, August to December or January. Kalbarri to Northampton and Murchison. A prostrate shrub, 0.05-0.3 m high, Round red to pink flowers 25-40mm across.

It is truly magical when I find a wildflower I have never seen before.


Murchison Darwinia (Darwinea virescens)
 Lesueur is also the home to 52 species of reptiles, 122 species of birds (You might see a wedge-tailed eagle, one of Australia's largest birds of prey, whilst on the Mount Lesueur walk trail), 15 species of native mammals, and 29 species of jewel beetles - all of which are protected, like the one you see below - 


Jewel beetle on Dryandra at Lesueur National Park
Further along the one-way drive you come to Cockleshell Gully picnic area. Picnic benches, shaded by the surrounding tree canopy, and disabled-access toilets are provided. No fires are permitted as this park is extremely susceptible to fire. A walk trail leads 
 down into Cockleshell Gully. The first few hundred metres of the walk trail is wheelchair accessible.

From Lesueur it is only about 30 kilometres to Jurien. We chose to camp just north of Jurien at Sandy Cape (but that will be in another post).


Lesueur National Park is approximately 30 kilometres from Jurien Bay, a three hour drive north of Perth, Western Australia. 

For more information:
Starflower
 Lesueur National Park downloadable brochure - DPAW-Lesueur
 Jurien Bay Tourism - Visit Jurien Bay

You might also like - 

Midwest, Western Australia
How to take great flower photos



Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

 

Mosaic Monday 
Life Thru the Lens 

Lifestyle Fifty Monday Linkup 
Our World Tuesday

Through My Lens 
Image-in-ing
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Worth Casing Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

The Weekly Postcard

26 comments:

  1. Hello, Jill! Your wildflower walk looks beautiful. Lovely images and beautiful flowers. It is great they have the boot cleaning station, I have never seen one around here. Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I really enjoyed walking through this amazing scenery with you today. Thank you for taking us along and showcasing the different flower species in your colour themed mosaics.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, Jill! How marvelous! So many different wildflowers. In my neck of the woods, we go crazy during bluebonnet season. Thank you so much for the tour. I saw flowers I've never seen before. Happy Monday! Have a great week.

    ReplyDelete
  4. So many different shapes and colors-what fun!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for the tour. I loved the variety of flowers.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow! that is a lot of wildflowers in one area. Bet it looks even better in real life!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Stunning images - wonderful flowers, I really don't know which one I like best. I have been to Australia many times, but didn't see all the flowers in real, only some of them. Thank you, Jill, for giving such a great overview on the beauty of Australian flowers.
    Moni xx

    ReplyDelete
  8. The wildflowers are just stunning this year, aren't they? Your photos are lovely and it's great to get an insight into their names, and also the nature of the trails you went on. We went on a walk in the Perth Hills yesterday and saw some beautiful swathes of colour along with some tiny orchids hiding in the undergrowth. I kept on saying, "Wish Jill was with us as she could tell us the names." Hmm, I really should invest in a handbook ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How lovely. There are so many varieties of wildflowers in WA Jo. We are so lucky. Many are so similar it becomes difficult to identify them accurately. Enjoy spring!

      Delete
  9. I started to make a list of my favourite photos and flowers to thank you but my list is way too long. Rae xxx

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hello Jill,
    What beautiful and exotic-looking flowers grow in the Australian wild. Most of them are so different from anything I've seen. A wonderful post!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Goodness me I am completely blown away by this show of beautiful wildflower blooms! I will have to time my return to The West in Spring next time! Lovely photos Jill :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hi, Jill I really enjoyed your visit with wildflowers. Thanks. Sylvia D.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Glad you explained what's going on at the boot cleaning station. I was wondering.
    Great shots, and the wattle is strikingly beautiful.

    Thanks for joining us at http://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2016/09/up-up-away.html

    ReplyDelete
  14. Such a lovely collection of wildflowers you've put together for us! There's something 'un-contrived' about wildflowers that I love.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Love the white scenery one. How fun to see all the wildflowers that you share.

    visiting from LTTL

    ReplyDelete
  16. Wonderful photo presentation and so well done ~ very creative!

    Wishing you a wonderful week ~ ^_^

    ReplyDelete
  17. Blown away by your photos! I was missing your photos posts already. I think i have mentioned this before but it is my opportunity to enjoy these gifts of nature.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Great flower photos and fields!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Que preciosidad de flores silvestres, un buen lugar para pasear...
    saludos

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Translated from Spanish - That preciousness of wild flowers, a good place to walk ... greetings

      Delete
  20. Such wonderful, amazing beauty in all of these brilliant floral image shares. I have several favorites...in the hues of the second, third, fifth and sixth of the floral mosaics. They all make me smile...those are my garden colours~ Hugs

    ReplyDelete
  21. It was the same for Death Valley this year. I missed it :-(.

    I'm so glad your didn't miss your once in a lifetime moment, and that you shared it with us. Beautiful.

    Lisa @ LTTL

    ReplyDelete
  22. Bloody beautiful. Thought I should use a suitably Aussie comment lol. I had a surge of home-sickness for W.A. when I saw your first collage.

    ReplyDelete

I hope you have enjoyed your visit to my blog. Thank you for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. I read and very much appreciate every comment and love hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return.