South West Plant Diversity

Dr Neville Marchant

Fri. 10.30am – 12 noon
Please note this course has two sessions over three weeks

May 24 and June 7

Dr Neville Marchant is an internationally renowned botanist and a former Director of the Western Australian Herbarium for which he worked for fifty years. This semester, Neville is offering two illustrated sessions for U3A on the plants of the south west.

Session 1. Strategies plants have developed to meet changes since Gondwana
This session will describe the key features of our flora that evolved while Australia moved northwards to a drier climate after the break-up of Gondwana. Our species-rich assemblage of flowering plants – sundews, trigger plants, parasitic plants and many hundreds of shrubby species – thrive under a harsh climate and poor soils. These have developed an intriguing array of incredible survival and pollination mechanisms.

Session 2. Why the south west is a global flowering plant hotspot.
Insect, bird and mammal pollination have been key driving forces in developing the floral features of familiar wildflowers that define our plant families and our many genera. Characteristic plants of the south west flora hotspot such as kangaroo paws, bottlebrushes, bell-shaped flowers, bacon and eggs peas, and bizarre orchids produce an amazing floral display each year. These and many others, less familiar, contribute to our remarkable plant diversity.

Min 8 – max 35

Cost: $10

Venue: Main Meeting Room, Margaret River Community Centre,33 Tunbridge St