After a tumultuous 2020 business-wise, I prioritised some quality time off with my family over Christmas in the beautiful Noosa region. We’ve been visiting for years and it never ceases to amaze me how calming, lush and plentiful the protected environs are.

Before I was a florist, I certainly noticed the beauty of the place, but my appreciation is amplified now that I can identify much of the flora and know their wholesale costs. I’m accustomed to seeing my favourite varieties bunched up in buckets at the market and ready for delivery to Bardon, so seeing them at the source, growing wild and free sets my heart racing.

Compared to much of South-East Queensland’s coastline, the Noosa Council has gone to great lengths to preserve its biodiversity. If you take the time to explore, you’ll find large sections of undeveloped, protected land that is lush with native and exotic plants and wildlife. Here are a few of my favourite finds from my walks there-many of which you will find in my arrangements!

The gloriosa lily, a bright creeper that’s technically a weed but is loved all the same. I see it as a festive flower because the bold colour and form is so celebratory.

Rhipsalis, a sculptural trailing cactus that is epiphytic in the wild. 

I recently discovered that the yucca plant is part of the lily family (always learning in this job!). Check out its gorgeous clustered white florettes which are a definite contrast to its spiky leaves.

Banana leaves are among my favourite tropical leaves to use in tall feature arrangements for their firm yet flexible nature. 

Bankias-my absolute go-to when I want to create something textural and punchy, either fresh or dried. Here are just two incredible (and huge) varieties I found close by. Did you know that 173 species exist in Australia? 

Pandanus trees that produce beautiful, broad canopies with stilt-like roots are quintessential to the east coast of Australia.

Various eucalyptus types can be found within close proximity in this region-I adore the foliage in trailing arrangements and when the budded variety starts to bloom in the warmer months.

Bougainvillea-the papery, brightly-coloured creeping flower native to South America is drought-tolerant which is part of the reason why they’ve grown so prolifically here in Australia. 

I hope you enjoy discovering these beauties as much as I do!