KARRATHA VISITOR CENTRE

Pilbara Wildflowers

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The Pilbara Wildflowers offer a dramatic contrast to our harsh red earth, ranging from blankets of purple Mulla Mulla, Sturt Desert Pea, yellow Wattles and orange Cockroach Bushes. For those following the wildflower trail, the best time to view our magnificent flora on the West Pilbara Coast is generally during the winter months from June to August.

Sturt Desert Pea is the most commonly identified of all the wildflowers on the West Pilbara Coast. The Desert Pea is named after the explorer Charles Sturt, who encountered vast drifts of them while exploring the central regions of South Australia, however the first specimen was actually collected from the Dampier Archipelago (East Lewis Island) by William Dampier in 1699. Four species of the Sturt Desert Peas have been photographed in this area; crimson with red bosses (the raised centres of the flower), crimson with black bosses, a white hybrid variety and a crimson and white variegated (which is less common).

Amongst the vast plains of red rock and hardy spinifex species, the Pilbara is home to a variety of tropical plant life found growing on the fringes of permanent freshwater pools. The Millstream Chichester National Park offers an abundance of tropical plant life ranging from the Millstream Palm (identifiable by its fanned, greyish-green leaves and smooth bark), to its introduced species from early pioneers such as the exotic Date and Cotton Palms found throughout the Millstream Delta.

The following itineraries provide a guide to exploring the Pilbara’a wildflowers:

Pilbara Trail  –  provided courtesy of Tourism Westerna Australia

Pilbara Wildflowers Trail  –  provided courtesy of RAC Travel

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