As one of the largest countries in the world by land mass, it comes with little surprise that the expansive Australian landscape is home to a lot of native plant species. In fact, there’s more than 30, 000 – making the flora and fauna of Australia some of our most prized assets.
Here, we’ve put together a list of some of the most common Australian native plants and where you can spot them.
Australia is home to more than 1200 species of Acacia, or wattles as they are more commonly known. Australia’s floral emblem can be found in bloom during spring and summer (September – February), with the flora most widespread in Canberra, the Adelaide Hills area, Southern New South Wales and Victoria.
Perhaps the most well-known Australian plant, the Eucalypt (gum tree) is the species of tree that Koalas feed exclusively on. With over 2800 species of Eucalypt, you can spot them around most parts of Australia. However, if you’re seeking diversity, the Blue Mountains in NSW is home to the world’s most diverse range of eucalypts; in fact, the Mountains got their name from the blue haze that’s believed to be created from the oil-bearing trees.
Proteaceae is the family of flowering plants that include banksias, grevilleas and waratahs. The key distinction of this family of flora is that the flower heads are made up of lots of small flowers. You can spot all three of these flowers in various parts of the country, however, for Banksias, southwestern WA has the greatest diversity of species with over 60 recorded; grevilleas can be spotted throughout the country; and waratahs can be spotted along the NSW coastline, where they are widespread.
Known by locals as the paperbark tree, Melaleuca is a genus of approximately 170 species of the Myrtle family which is, for the most part, endemic to Australia. You can spot these trees all around Australia, however, are usually found along watercourses and swamps.
Commonly known as the ‘Emu Bush’, the eremophila family is comprised of more than 200 species of plants which are endemic to Australia. They’re mostly found in Western Australia, where the conditions tend to be more arid. The eremophila species can be identified by their colourful shrubs and fleshy fruits which often attract insects and birds.