Photo taken with permission
Westfield Parramatta Flower Shop
28 September 2012
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Waratah (Telopea) is an endemic, Australian genus of five species of large shrubs or small trees, native to the southeastern parts of Australia (New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania). The most well-known species in this genus is Telopea speciosissima, which has bright red flowers and is the NSW state emblem. The waratah is a member of the plant family Proteaceae, a family of flowering plants distributed in the Southern Hemisphere. The key diagnostic feature of Proteaceae is the inflorescence which is often very large and showy, bright colours and consisting of many small flowers densely packed into a compact head or spike. Species of waratah boast such inflorescences ranging from 6-15 cm in diameter with a basal ring of coloured bracts. The leaves are spirally arranged, 10-20 cm long and 2-3 cm broad with entire or serrated margins. The name waratah comes from the Eora Aboriginal people, the original inhabitants of the Sydney area.