Only a very special plant would be fit to commemorate an occasion such as the Centenary of Canberra, and now, the release of the beautiful correa Canberra Bells means every Australian has the opportunity to share in the celebrations, with a little piece of the Centenary in their very own garden.
Canberra Bells is the official plant commemorating the Centenary of Canberra and now, this hardy but attractive native shrub is available for purchase.
The project to develop a commemorative native plant began several years ago as a result of consultation from the Canberra community.
While a Centenary Rose was initially considered, it was agreed a native plant would be a more appropriate symbol for the 'Bush Capital’.
The decision to cultivate a new type of correa was made by a panel of local experts, including representatives from the ACT branch of the Australian Native Plant Society, the Yarralumla Nursery and the Australian National Botanic Gardens, as well as local media personality and native plant evangelist Ian Warden.
The correa (some varieties of which are referred to as the ‘native fuchsia’) was selected for its drought and frost tolerance, its stunning flowers and because it’s indigenous to the region.
Experienced native plant breeders, Peter and Jennifer Ollerenshaw of Bywong Nursery, were then asked to develop the new hybrid.
The variety that resulted from their work is an attractive, hardy shrub, which features two-tone, red and cream bell-shaped flowers that will attract nectar-feeding birds. Canberra Bells flowers throughout autumn and will thus add a flourish of colour to gardens for Canberra’s birthday in March each year.
Like Canberra itself, the plant is born out of Federation: one of its parent plants is appropriately called Federation Belle, while the other is Correa Mannii.
The common name Canberra Bells was the most popular choice among more than 250 suggestions received from Canberrans and gardening enthusiasts across Australia.
Canberra Bells can already be found growing in excellent company, with plants set to thrive at Government House, the Australian National Botanic Gardens and the National Arboretum.
For plant care information and advice, go to www.pma.com.au/view_plant.asp?plant_id=259
Approximately 20,000 plants have been grown across Australia and will be available in all states. To find stockists in other states go to www.pma.com.au/locate_grower.asp?plant_id=259&submit_state=0
In Canberra, Canberra Bells are sold at the Yarralumla Nursery. Contact details are below.
Regular Opening Hours
Mon - Sun:
9.00am to 5.00pm
Mon - Fri:
7:30 - 16:00
Yarralumla ACT 2600
Garden Centre & Plant Issues:
(02) 6207 2444
(02) 6207 2446
(02) 6207 2455
Canberra Bells was officially named on 12 March 2010 as part of Canberra’s 97th birthday celebrations.