Hairy Bush Pea

Clouds Of Yellow Through The Understorey …

This time of year is a wonderful time to get out to our local bushwalks to enjoy the native wildflowers as they burst into bloom. One of these is the Hairy Bush Pea or Pultenaea villosa, a shrub that in good seasons creates clouds of yellow through the understorey.

Beloved by bees and other pollinators, it is in the pea family and a part of the genus often commonly called “Eggs and Bacon” pea. This references the bright yellow flowers that often have red in the centre.

It can grow two metres tall and three metres across in good conditions and features a lovely weeping habit that makes it an excellent feature plant in the garden. It prefers an open position with well-drained soil that gets at least half a day of sun. The more sun that the plant receives, the denser its habit will be with shaded specimens having a tendency to become spindly.

Frost-hardy, drought tolerant and featuring red new growth, Hairy Bush Pea can also make a great informal hedge that brings in pollinators and offers shelter to small birds.

Hairy Bush Pea plants have a relatively short lifespan of six to eight years but are easy to propagate from seed or softwood cutting. In the past, they have been used as an indicator plant to signal time for a controlled burn of the understorey. 

Hairy Bush Pea (Pultenaea villosa)
Hairy Bush Pea (Pultenaea villosa)

By Jane Frost

Waxing lyrical about building a home for birds, bees, and the rest of my family …