Kunzea ambigua

A first-time appearance of a photograph from silverbanksia@Flickr aka Jonathan Esling of Australia on BPotD (original | via the Botany Photo of the Day Flickr Pool). Thank you!

Kunzea consists of 36 species of woody shrubs, all endemic to Australia with the exception of Kunzea ericoides (an Australian native also found in New Zealand). Kunzea ambigua is native to southeastern Australia (including a bit of Tasmania), associated with sandy-soiled heath and open forest. Generally, the species is white-flowered (one of its common names is white kunzea), but today’s photograph shows a pink-flowered selection.

Other common names for this species include poverty bush and tick bush (as Mabberley states in The Plant Book, “allegedly found only in tick-infested areas near Sydney”). It is certainly anything but impoverished regarding how much it flowers: Kunzea ambigua.

Kunzea ambigua is a useful species for attracting insect pollinators and for sand-dune stabilization. The properties associated with the latter benefit, though–for example, tolerating poor soils–also give it potential as a weedy invader in non-native ecosystems. Indeed, some Kunzea species are invasives in South Africa’s biodiverse fynbos.

Kunzea ambigua

5 responses to “Kunzea ambigua”

  1. Kate

    Botanical Fireworks!

  2. Melissa Bowen

    My Wallpaper ASAP. This Is Beautiful. Thanks, Jonathan!

  3. SandyinZ4

    Wow! It looks like fireworks. I am saving this one, too!

  4. Murry Gans

    Amazing! I actually gasped when the photo loaded. This is new background for my computers at home and work. Many thanks!

  5. elizabeth a airhart

    beauty is excrescence,super abundance
    ramdom ebulience,and sheer delightful
    waste to be enjoyed in it’s own right
    david c peattie
    thank you daniel and mr esling please come again
    i am florida usa

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