Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Egg and bacon anyone?

Every spring I look forward to seeing these shrubs flowering. They're so ungainly, bold, angular, flexible and colourful. The Hop Bitter-pea Daviesia latifolia is a member of the Fabaceae family, the brown and yellow 'egg and bacon' pea plants. Apparently it got its common name because the 'leaves' or phyllodes taste very bitter. Now why would you even try the taste? The 'latifolia' bit describes the broad leaves. That's more like it.


Mosura said...

"why would you even try the taste? "

I believe it was used by brewers in place of hops. Still, I wouldn't like to be the bloke given the job of sucking all the leaves trying to find a suitable plant.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Boobook.
A common plant around here, on the sandstone plateau. Ours are not yet in flower. Strange how much impact altitude has on flowering times of plants - more impact than latitude, it seems.
Thanks to Mosura for the explanation of the name, which had puzzled me too.