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Crotalaria cunninghamii - Green Birdflower

Updated: Jul 6, 2022

This is on my Top 10 list and no wonder! Look at this flower! It is such an unusual shape and a must have for anyone who likes something a little different in their garden.

We've actually just done some propagation tests on our seed and happy to say that they are performing very well and germinating very quickly, so we will have more plants which equals more seeds!

Pre-treatment is essential for faster germination of this species, best done by boiling water and repeated if necessary until seeds have swollen sufficiently and are ready for sowing - propagation notes are available under the Propagation and Cultural Notes tab.

Crotalaria cunninghamii grows as a shrub to about 3 - 4m tall with large oval leaves, the branches and leaves have a hairy or velvety feel to them which also adds interest but the best feature is most definitely the masses of large bright green flowers that are striped with purple or black veins appear on terminal clusters from Winter to Summer - depending where you are situated. Each flower looks like a bird that is attached by its 'beak' to the stem and it's just an amazing looking flower!

Crotalaria has a native distribution in inland areas of northern Australia and it is popular in cultivation in warm climates but will grow in cooler areas but is susceptible to mould and rotting in Winter and is not tolerant of frost.

Grow in a sunny position in well drained sandy soils with a slow release native plant fertiliser.

Spring pruning is helpful to keep a compact shape and will re-shoot readily for the warm season.

This is a great addition to any home garden but is short lived, luckily it seeds well and is easy to propagate by both seed and cuttings.

We have fresh seeds available now so please contact us to secure seed for this season's Crotalaria cunninghamii! Don't miss out!

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