Six on Saturday – W42/2020 – A Topknot

Our sad news is that on Monday, Teacup departed for the Happy Hunting Ground. The antibiotics we were giving her did not work, and she succumbed to a form of wasting disease.

This week has been full of visits to Mr S’s daughter, partner and grandchildren who are holidaying close by, interspersed with lots of work, so any chance of trying the Nasturtium Pesto mentioned last week has fallen by the wayside. Hopefully we will get a chance to test the recipe this week.

And now it’s time for us to get started on this week’s Six on Saturday.

Firstly, two online plant orders arrived at the same time in the post on Monday, one from Tasmania and the other from Victoria. I ordered a variety of plants not available locally, such as Philadelphus mexicanus and P. grandaflorus, Vigna caracalla (Snail Vine), Artemesia Lambrook Silver, Cornus sericea flaviramea (yellow stem dogwood), and Viburnum plicatum lanarth. All these tiny plants have been potted up into larger pots to allow them to acclimatize and put on some new growth before being planted outside in the garden.

2. We have an abundance of Borage at the moment, but one plant in the back garden has a single pink flower along with the usual sky blue coloured flowers. Isn’t that unusual?

3. This is the first time I have seen a Topknot pigeon, and we managed to get one fairly clear photo of it as it feasted on the palm fruits in a neighbour’s garden. The birds are quite large, grey in colour and have a prominent rusty coloured crest. They are fruit eaters and inhabitants of rainforests.

As Monday is the start of the week long annual country wide Aussie Backyard Bird Count, we are hoping that the topknots are still around to be counted this year. The Aussie Backyard Bird Count is now into it’s 7th year. Participants have to register before the Bird Count, and can submit counts via the website or via the App. Each count period is only 20 minutes, with no limitation on the number of counts per day.

4. The flowers on the Kangaroo Paw, Anigozanthos manglesii, have finally opened! They are so unusual.

5. Last year I planted out many foxglove seedlings, some of which flowered in spring of that year. The few seedlings that remained and did not flower have just started flowering now.

6. The final one for the week is the lovely display of Queen Anne Lace and Dill flowers. The plants are almost 2 metres in height and give a lovely bold display. They are all nearing the end of their flowering life. These plants grew from a pollinator mix of seeds I grew in Autumn, but I found them to be remarkably free of any insects. Recently though I have noticed that a few small beetles have been visiting the flowers.

As usual, a special thank you is sent to The Propagator for allowing us to share our weekly Six on Saturdays. To find out more, please visit his blog!


  1. One of the things I like about this SOS is the unknown plants I see in several southern-hemisphere gardens. Your kangaroo paw is striking.
    Very sorry to hear of your Teacup.

    • And likewise, for me learning about all the northern hemisphere plants and gardens! And I have definitely learnt a lot! I thoroughly enjoy the Sixes on Saturday.
      I have recently purchased a second Kangaroo paw! More in this week’s Six.
      Thanks for the thoughts on Teacup. Luckily little Specks seems to have settled down and accepted the fact that her friend is no longer around.

  2. A lovely collection, those are unusual flowers on the Kangaroo paw, my favourite is the Queen Ann lace. Condolences on the loss of Teacup, so sad.

  3. Sorry to hear that little teacup didn’t make it. ☹️

    The Queen Anne Lace and Dill flowers look fabulous together, and they’re so tall. The Kangaroo Paw is so unusual – and lovely. I have never heard of a Topknot pigeon – I can see why they got their name! It’s a nice looking pigeon, so different from those we have here.

    Have fun planting out all your new plants when they’ve acclimatised, and I hope the bird count goes well for you.

  4. You are so good to pot up your new arrivals right away! I’m afraid I have work to do. I’ll need to take a hard look at my borage after seeing that unusual one.

    • I have learnt the hard way that if I leave them too long then they will probably succumb. The borage is really strange. It is the only pink flower there out of all the plants I have. A real fluke!

    • Borage is a great plant. I see it seeding in the most unusual places. I think the seed must be very wind-assisted?

  5. I used to do the RSPB bird count in the UK every year when my daughter was young. It’s so disappointing when the birds don’t arrive at the time you’ve chosen to count. I love the closeups of the Kangaroo paws.

    • We have done the bird count for a number of years now, and it never ceases to amaze us how the birds ‘disappear’ during the count! It is frustrating! It will be interesting to see how we do this year. The kangaroo paws are unusual and delightful! I purchased a new beautiful pink one on Friday.

  6. That is fabulous Queen Anne’s Lace! I have never seen it so tall. But, then again, most of what I see is growing wild along road side ditches!

    • I’m thrilled with it, and did not realise how tall it grew! I had to prop it up against some supports so that it did not flop over. I will definitely grow it again!

  7. Lots of new plants! The Queen Anne Lace and Dill flowers are a show. I’ve bought some Borage seeds to sow next year as their flowers are supposed to be a good source of nectar for the bees. Sorry to hear about Teacup.

    • We do miss Teacup! Specks seems to have adjusted to being the only chicken around at the moment. We’re still deciding whether we shall get more chickens or not. I like the Borage, but it does get a little untidy when it matures, but I think it is well worth it for the sake of the bees! That is the first time I have successfully grown Queen Anne Lace and Dill. They are definitely going to be grown again!

  8. Living at your place always seems so exotic to me! I loved the kangaroo paw and the topknot parrot too. I even like the names of things in your garden! It it so nice to see gardens from across the world!

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