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Wildflowers of Western Australia

Red and Green Kangaroo Paw

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Red and Green Kangaroo Paw Anigozanthos manglesii

The most attractive and well known of the Kangaroo Paws and an Australian icon.

It is one of eleven species of the genus Anigozanthos which is only found in the south-west of Western Australia.

The generic name is derived from the Greek anisos, meaning unequal or oblique, and anthos, meaning flower.

Flower Bird

Honeyeaters and Wattlebirds, pollinators of the plant, are often seen perched on the sturdy metre high stems drinking the plant's nectar from the green hermaphrodite flowers.
The large sticky pollen is deposited on the birds head.

Kangaroo paws are also pollinated by the tiny nectar-feeding honey possums.

Paws

Birds and bees.

Kangaroo paws have evolved to avoid bees.

Generally, bird pollinated flowers are red (bees can't see red) and produce abundant dilute nectar (bees need strong nectar).

Kangaroo paws are unscented - flower pollinating birds have a poor sense of smell. Flowers with a fragrance are usually insect-pollinated.

Anigozanthos Anigozanthos

The ten or more hairy flowers on a plant open one at a time and can be seen unfolding from August to October. (winter/spring)

Manglesii Thumbs Up

The specific name manglesii honours Capt. Robert Mangles, horticultural enthusiast, who propigated the plant from seed in his English garden, 1839.

This perennial plant cultivates well in sandy soil but should be treated as an annual for the ultimate display in your garden to attract honey eating birds.

The golden rule for growing kangaroo paws is full sun and good drainage. The floral stems make excellent cut flowers and are grown commercially around the world.

Kangaroo Paw Floral Emblem

Proclaimed the floral emblem of Western Australia in 1960.
Classed as protected flora and is seen on uniforms and vehicles of the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife.

Stamps
1962 - 5 pence
1968 - 6 cents
1981 - 24 cents
1984 - 27 cents

Coins
1997 - $100 and $150

Darling Ranges Manglesii Budling Vivid
Mt Lesueur Roo Paw

Anigozanthos manglesii

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