Telopea speciosissima ~ The Waratah, one of the oddest flowers to ever bloom. This is the floral emblem of N.S.W ~ my home state ~ & the waratah blooms there in its National Parks. It is related to the South African Protea, likes nutrient deficient, sandy soil , regenerates from the root stock after a bushfire, blooming again within 2 years & it won't grow up here.
I haven't even tried to grow it. I hate killing plants & I've done a fair bit of it in my time. I insist on trying to grow things where I know they won't be happy. They reward me as I deserve by curling up their toes & dying a lingering death. Worse I want a white waratah, which are unusual & rarer & therefore, I supposse expensive & thus beyond my purse. Probably a good thing.
I have managed to grow a N.S.W Christmas Bush up here in solid clay & what's more, it blooms each year in time for Christmas. Hm. How to explain we all grow this beauty for the bright red husks that remain after the flowers have fallen! It's not just our animals that are more than a little peculiar. The flora is weird too. It has a beauty all its own.