During summer when the temperatures are soaring it is most surprising to observe splashes of white blossom in the roadside vegetation.
On further inspection we find the blossom is a twining shrub Marianthus bicolour, commonly named Painted Marianthus due to the wonderful burgundy stripes on the petals.
Marianthus are members of the Pittosporaceae Family and are mostly twining climbing shrubs. If no support is available Marianthus will form dense shrubs to 1 metre.
Marianthus bicolor’s usual habitat is sand-over-gravel in open woodland which is generally found on hillsides. Flowering is from December to March, and the fruit is a fleshy capsule.
Author: Bev Lockley
Bev is an Australian native plants specialist, with a particular focus on the unique flora of the arid region of the Great Southern and Wheatbelt. Bev is a community activist, amazing teacher, and the initiator and driving force behind the Friends of Piesse Lake and the Katanning Propagators Group.