Common name: Cranbrook Bell. D. meeboldii is one of several species of Darwinia known collectively as ‘Mountain Bells'.
Family: MYRTACEAE (c. 150 Genera)
Origin of Scientific Name
Darwinia - After Erasmus Darwin (1731 - 1802), English physician and poet, and grandfather of Charles Darwin.
meeboldii - in honour of Alfred Meebold (1863 - 1952) German botanical collector who travelled widely and visited all Australian mainland states between 1928 and 1933.
This species is an erect, spindly, small to medium shrub which may reach 2 to 3 m in height. Like other members of the Mountain Bell group, the 8 (approximate) small flowers are enclosed within large bracts which give the bell shape. Thus the 'flower' is really a cluster of small flowers enclosed within a 'bell' up to 30mm long, which is usually white (often with some green) with bright red tips and displayed prominently at the end of the branches. Leaves are mid to dark green and linear.
Currently found only in an area in the Stirling Ranges in South West Western Australia, this species is declared rare and facing a high risk of extinction in the wild.
August to November.
Like most darwinias, this is not easy to grow from seed. It is best propagated from cuttings, or for optimum results, grafted on to the more robust Darwinia citriodora. If not grafted, they require moist, peaty soils, with excellent drainage, a cool root run (mulch well) and protection from direct sunlight. Though they do require watering through their first summer after planting, do not over-water once established.
Pests and Diseases
In the wild, it is susceptible to fire, grazing by rabbits and exposure from loss of protective canopies due to dieback (Phytophthora cinnamomi). In the home garden, they can suffer from powdery mildew if grown in overly dark or dank conditions.
View In Kings Park
In the Conservation Garden (adjacent to Forrest carpark) and in the Stirling Range Flora garden bed, close to the Acacia Garden. To help locate these sites, you may download the Western Australian Botanic Garden Guide brochure via our brochures page.
A good plant for attracting nectar-feeding birds into your garden.