Native Frangipanis was a popular flower in Australia during the early 2000s. Stickers were used to decorate our cars and bedroom furniture. We also decorated our bed covers, jewellery boxes and picture frames with stickers. We also filled every room with scented candles. We even embellished our necklaces, bracelets, and earrings with tiny yellow flowers.
The Australian frangipanis are a staple in Australian backyards. They bloom in summer and give off their distinctive scent in spring. The most popular frangipanis cultivars are yellow and light pink.
Did you know that Australia has its own frangipani native? Hymenosporum flavum. Russell Barrett, a botanist at The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, says it has been grown all over the world because of its sweet fragrance and attractiveness. Russell says that the bark of this tree is also very fibrous and was used by Aboriginal Australians to make string and rope for weaving, and other tools.
Although they share the same name, there are very few similarities between the native frangipanis and other frangipanis species in the Pacific and Americas. Their scent is the only thing they have in common. Russell says that native frangipani has strong perfumed flowers that smell just like the frangipanis we are all familiar with.
The frangipanis native to Australia is not the same as the ones you are familiar with. The yellow flowers of the native frangipanis are smaller than those from exotic cultivars. Russell claims that these flowers still display a spectacular display because they grow in clusters and have a strong perfume.
Hymenosporum Flavum / Native Frangipani’s Advantages
Russell says that native frangipani has many advantages over non-native varieties. First, the native frangipani are evergreen while the non-native varieties are deciduous. They can remain leafless for up to several months in certain regions. Russell describes it as “thick white sap”, which is a liquid that non-natives produce when a branch or leaf breaks off. This can irritate the skin and be potentially fatal.
Non-native frangipanis may be deceiving when it comes to the delicious scent. Russell states that typical frangipanis do not offer nectar or scent so they don’t provide any sugar rewards to insects. Russell says that insects and birds may be attracted to the sweet scent, in the hope of finding food. Native frangipani, on the other side, provides nectar for birds or insects in addition to its sweet smell.” This means that there will be more garden visitors.
- Flowers that are fragrant in spring-summer
- A great choice to attract native birds
- Attractive foliage that is suitable for screen or hedging
- Fast growing native evergreen tree
- In 5 years, they can reach 3 to 5 m in height, but can get larger with age, especially in the tropics.
- For a large screen, it is advisable to plant at least 2m from each other.
- Full sun is preferred, but can tolerate partial shade
- Pot-friendly and can be grown in most parts of Australia, but it is best to avoid frosts.
- Hardy evergreen Australian native tree
Hymenopsporum Flavum (or native frangipani), is a beautiful tree from the rainforest that is found in coastal Queensland and northern New South Wales. It is also native to New Guinea.
It can be grown in many home gardens, in warm and frost-free areas. The flowers produce masses of sweetly scented blooms from mid spring through early summer. The flowers are creamy white when they emerge and then age to buttery yellow. There will be beautiful combinations of yellow and white flowers covering the tree.
Native frangipanis are a bright green plant with glossy leaves. They can grow up to 20m high in a protected area, but will reach around 10m height and 5m width in areas that are more exposed. Both bees and nectar-feeding birds find the flowers attractive, as they both have a valuable source for food.
Scale insects can attack native frangipanis (pictured above), and can infest the leaves as well as the stems. This can cause yellowing of the leaves and sooty mold, which are black, ash-like fungus, to develop. The tree can look absolutely miserable due to scale.
Pest Oil, an oil-based spray that can control scale insects, is a good option. If the tree is very large, a ladder may be useful. Cover the stems, as well as both the upper and lower leaves. It may be necessary to spray several times a week. Dead scale can stay on the plant for up to a couple of weeks. Any sooty mold will slowly disappear once the scale have been controlled.
Native Australian plants such as native frangipani need to be fed with Yates’ Dynamic Lifter Soil Enhancer & Plant Fertilizer each spring and fall. It is a rich organic food that can be used to feed native Australian plants.
Hymenosporum flavum Care
These plants will thrive in humus rich, well-drained, moist soil.
In cooler climates, where they might struggle in shaded areas, full sun is the best.
Fertilize your plants with a native fertilizer in spring, and again in the early summer. Water well before and after fertilizing.
To ensure good upright growth, you should stake young plants.
Native frangipani can be pruned after flowering. This keeps the plant at an ideal size and encourages bushy growth that will produce more flowers.
Hard pruning is generally not recommended for older plants. If necessary, you can trim back old wood to reshape and reinvigorate the tree.
Scientific Name: Hymenosporum flavum
Common Name: Native Frangipani
Type of plant: Small tree
Height: 4 ~ 15 metres
Width: 3 ~ 7 metres
Flowers Colours: Yellow, White
Flowering Season: Spring and Summer
Ph Level: Acid, Neutral
Type of soil: Sandy, Clay and Loamy, Sandy loam and Clay loam
Environment for Plants: Low maintenance, Poolside, Flower Garden
Climate Zone: Subtropical, Warm temperate and Cool temperate. Mediterranean
Light: Sunny, Light shade
Growth Habit: Evergreen, Spreading
Soil Moisture: Well-drained, Moist moderate drainage
Propagation Method/ Frangipani Cuttings : Seed, Softwood cutting, Semihardwood cutting
Frost Tolerance: Can tolerate light frost
Use of plants: Screen, Hedge, and Fragrant
Other Uses: Street tree, Fragrant oils. Erosion control. Fast growing. Playground friendly.
Attracts Wildlife: Butterflies, Bees, and Other Insects.
This plant is unique in that it is the only one of its kind. It is not related to the Other’ frangipani. Keep visiting Architecture’s Idea for more updates.