Mount Barker is incredibly rich and diverse in wildflower species and is recognised as one of Australia's premier locations to view orchids and other spectacular flowers. From the rugged peaks, towering forests and lush rolling granite flats of the Stirling Range and Porongurup National Parks, Mount Barker is an ideal place to experience some of the world's biodiversity hotspots.
The springtime wildflower display from late August to November is justifiably famous. There are over 1500 species of plants in the Stirling Ranges alone with over 80 species being endemic including the famous mountain bells (Darwinias). Hundreds of orchid species reside around Mount Barker and the Porongurups and Stirling Range National Parks also share over 148 bird species including bright coloured parrots and majestic wedge-tailed eagles.
The orchid- and species-rich bush remnants around Mount Barker, Narrikup, and Kendenup are ablaze with colour throughout the year, while nearby Tenterden and Cranbrook also provide great orchid spotting locations. The Fitzgerald River National Park and the rich coastal heath from Walpole to Bremer Bay are full of wildflower surprises for enthusiasts willing to explore.
Wildflower walk trails are marked at Mount Barker (Reservoir Loop Trail) and Porongurup (Twin Creeks Reserve). Maps and expert advice are available respectively from the Banksia Farm and the Porongurup Shop and Tearooms. A portion of North Woogenilup Rd (gravel) is also gazetted as a “flora drive”.
One of Mount Barker's leading wildflower attractions, the Banksia Farm is renowned for having the only complete collection of Banksia species in the world and has been regularly featured on ABC's Gardening Australia programmes.
This attractive 5ha garden boasts a thriving ecosystem and the proprietors welcome bird, nature and wildflower lovers. It is one of only a few locations in WA where you get first hand knowledge of the best seasonal flowering locations and the opportunity to learn about our fascinating native plants. They conduct guided Banksia, bird and nature bush walks.