What to look for
- One flower per spray open;
- Buds should be plump, not shrivelled;
- Avoid bunches with buds or flowers that droop.
- Keep cool at all times.
- Strip leaves from the lower half of each stem and wash the stem ends.
- Cut off all leaves with black marks (ink spot is common in paws).
- Recut at least 2 cm off each stem with sharp secateurs and place in water immediately.
- Preservative is essential.
- To open buds place stems in double strength commercial preservative or mix 3 to 4 teaspoons of sugar per litre of water and place stems in this for 24 hours, then transfer to clean water + a preservative.
- Replace water every day.
- Keep away from sunlight and warm air as these will cause flower fade.
Interesting Facts about this Flower
The French botanist, de Labillardiere, first collected the kangaroo paw, Anigozanthos rufus, near Esperance in 1792. The generic name Anigozanthos is probably derived from the Greek ‘anises’, meaning ‘unequal’ or ‘oblique’, and ‘anthos’, meaning ‘flower’, in reference to the division of the floral extremities into six unequal parts. The red-green A. manglesii is the state emblem of Western Australia.
These flowers are mainly pollinated by birds. The shape of the flowers and the position of the pollen-bearing anthers is a feature which allows pollen to be deposited on the head of feeding birds. This pollen is transferred from flower to flower as the birds feed. Different species usually deposit pollen on different areas of the birds’ head. This means that pollen from one species is unlikely to be deposited in the flowers of another species. For more information visit the Australian National Botanic Gardens website
Botanical Name: Several Anigozanthos (red, green, yellow, pink) or Macropedia (black)
Common Names: Kangaroo Paw
Stem Length: 30 to 90 cm
Country of Origin: Australia
Available Colours: Black, Green, Red, Yellow