A 15-day adventure exploring Western Australia from Perth to Shark Bay with Dr Peter Weston
Have you heard of an orchid called the “Queen of Sheba”? This name belongs to a spectacular
group of Western Australian species of Thelymitra, the most vividly coloured of which is T.
pulcherrima. Its flowers could be used to define the word “gaudy”. Their combination of red
and bright yellow, striped and blotched with purple, would be condemned as “over the top”
if reproduced in high fashion. But “over the top” could be used to describe the flora of south
western Western Australia in general. It is one of those rare centres in which bizarre botanical
novelties are concentrated in impressive numbers.
On this exclusive Foundation & Friends tour, Dr Peter Weston will be leading members to the
home of Thelymitra pulcherrima, at Mt Lesueur, on the way from Perth to Shark Bay and back.
This region includes the “northern sandplains”, an area of extraordinary botanical diversity and
the habitat of some of Australia’s most spectacular native plants. We hope to see the rare Queen
of Sheba but we also expect to see flowers of the black kangaroo paw (Macropidia fuliginosa),
the wreath lechenaultia, (Lechenaultia macrantha), the scarlet featherflower (Verticordia
grandis), the huge blossoms and gumnuts of the mottlecah (Eucalyptus macrantha), and
massed displays of pink everlasting daisies (Rhodanthe chlorocephala), to name a few of the
hundreds of species that will be blooming when we will be there, at the peak of the wildflower
season. We will also walk amongst the extraordinary limestone pinnacles of Nambung National
Park, visit the magnificent Murchison River gorge, see the fascinating stromatolites of Hamelin
Pool, a reminder of Earth’s earliest lifeforms, and enjoy the aquamarine waters of Jurien Bay,
Dongara and Francois Peron National Park.
The best part is that when you travel with Foundation & Friends, a portion of your tour fee benefits the Gardens' conservation, science, education, and horticulture efforts.
About your Leader: Dr Peter Weston
Your tour will be accompanied by Dr Peter Weston, former Senior Principal Research Scientist
with the National Herbarium of NSW. Peter’s special interests are the Proteaceae and
Orchidaceae families, both of which are spectacularly diverse in the area we will be visiting.
Peter’s botanical expertise and enthusiasm will only serve to enhance this unique adventure.
Peter has taken trips to Madagascar (twice) and South Africa with Foundation and Friends as
well as New Caledonia and Vietnam & Cambodia. Peter Escorted a trip to the SW of Western
Australia in Sept 2019, and this journey north of Perth is Part 2 of this incredible exploration.
-Visit King’s Park ‑ one of Australia’s largest and most fascinating inner city parks
-Visit the northern sandplains ‑ an area of extraordinary botanical diversity and the habitat of some of Australia’s most spectacular native plants.
-Visit the magnificent Murchison River gorge
-Incredible rock formations at Kalbarri National Park
-Walk amongst the bizarre limestone Pinnacles at Nambung National Park
-Looking for the incredible Queen of Sheba orchid
-Enjoy the aquamarine waters of Jurien Bay, Dongara and Francois Peron National Park
-Trip escorted by Dr Peter Weston
Click on the links for the full itinerary
and booking form