Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world.
I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist. Through my blog I am
seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Monday, 15 April 2019

The Mottlecah - Eucalyptus macrocarpa

The Mottlecah - Eucalyptus macrocarpa - is a mallee eucalypt and one of my favourite Western Australian native plants. There are over 900 species of eucalypts in Australia, which have adapted to nearly every kind of environment. I am always excited if we come across a Mottlecah on our travels through the Western Australian wheatbelt. 

Please note: Since I wrote this post I have done some more investigation as there are several types of Macrocarpa. You might also like to read my more recent post - August 2020 - Is it Eucalyptus macrocarpa or a rose mallee

I believe this variety here is the Small leaved mottlecah - Eucalyptus Macrocarpa subsp elachantha

The name Mottlecah is the Aboriginal name given to the species.

August 2020 - I believe the flower bottom left is a relative of the Macrocarpa - Eucaluptus rhodantha - rose mallee

The Mottlecah is easily identified in the bush. It is a straggly sprawling bush/tree which grows to between 1-5 metres tall with thick, flat, silvery-grey leaves 5-8cm long and 3-6cm wide. 

The red flowers are 5-8cm across, with a silvery cap before flowering which occurs in early spring to summer and from late autumn to early winter. The colour comes from the stamens alone, as the flower does not have "petals".  
Below here you can see the flower starting to push off its cap.

The flowers are followed by large bowl-shaped "gumnuts" which give rise to the Greek-derived specific name macrocarpa – "makros" (large) and "karpos" (fruit). 
You can see the various stages in the image below.  

August 2020 - Can you see the difference in the leaves of these two images below - I believe the top image to be the small-leaves mottlecah, and the one below the larger leaved eucalyptus macrocarpa.

  Found in the wheatbelt of Western Australia, we saw them at Western Flora and also in the Corrigin region of the central wheatbelt. North of Enneabba, Western Flora is a great place to stay for a few days if you are interested in wildflowers as they have several wildflower walks you can explore.  

If you are visiting Perth and don't have time to travel afar, then you can see the Mottlecah in Kings Park Botanic Garden right in the centre of Perth.  

Western Australia boasts up to 12,000 known species and the Western Australian wildflower season spreads over several months starting from July in the north’s Kimberley region till November in the south.

For more information on the Mottlecah:

Flora Base - Euc Macrocarpa
Euclid - Eucalpts of Australia

You might also like:
Once in 40 year wildflower extravaganza 
Hunting for wild orchids in Western Australia's midwest 
Photographing wildflowers 

Do you have a favourite wildflower? Perhaps you would like to tell us about it in your comments. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Hello there! I love reading your comments. If you scroll down to the bottom you can comment too! I would love to hear from you.


  1. WOW what a gorgeous flower. Happy Mosaic Monday Jill

    much love...

  2. Jill - the mottlecah is an intriguing plant. Both the flowers and the gumnuts are attractive. Can you eat the nuts? My favorite wildflower is bear grass. The individual plant is gorgeous in its own right; when you have a slope full of them it is nothing short of stunning. Thanks for linking up to Mosaic Monday!

  3. We see these here in California too, but I never saw the caps. Love that you give the process from bud to flowers. Such a beautiful and luxurious looking flower! Great contribution to All Seasons, Jill! Have a marvelous week:)
    About your reply: Now we're living on the country side, I have severely slowed down on traveling for special purchases (even though I miss these outings), since our weekly grocery trip takes 5-7 hours.

    1. 5-7 hours to do grocery! gosh! a once a month trip?

  4. Those are just amazing blooms! They don't even look real! BUT...there is nothing more beautiful than what we find in nature!

  5. Wonderful... Happy MosaicMonday... I enjoyed your Post.

  6. "A" favourite flower, Jill????
    Who could manage to have only one?�� Even more difficult in Australia! ���� That's exactly the ones I have on my WhatsApp profile photo��

  7. Jill, Thanks for sharing this great flower. It is amazing as it comes from its hard shell. Thanks for sharing and have a great week. Sylvia D.

  8. The Mottlecah is so beautiful. It's a gorgeous splash of colour, and the silvery leaves give a really nice relief in an often otherwise olive green environment of natives. I love the flowers - isn't nature amazing? Great shots as always :)

    1. and so lucky in the south west with these amazing unique wildfloers!

  9. Exquisite captures Jill. Thank you for sharing.

  10. I loved this blog post Jill. Your posts are always very interesting and informative, thank you

  11. Replies
    1. we have many eucalypts whose flowers look similar, but this is certainly one of the largest. Truly exquisite.

  12. Hi Jill,
    Love the photos! I'm am aussie too, living on the east coast.
    We are page buddies at Random-osity this week.

    You're most welcome to join me in a cuppa,

  13. Such a beautiful flower. Thanks for sharing! You always post such interesting things. I love it! Have a great weekend. Can't wait to see what you post next week.

  14. Beautiful pics. My fave is easily the photo of the gumnut emreging. Interesting as well as beautiful.

  15. Hello , I have recently planted x2 of these pretty trees. Yesterday I saw some at kings park and this gave me second thoughts ? They were very scraggly and I began to wonder if they would work in my yard ? The ticket says 4x4 meters and that pruning and trimming is recommended? I'm hoping that the kings park ones are more free range and that with trimming i can control mine a little more ?also I'm interested In how much growth per year I can expect from them ? And what I can give to increase growth?

    1. I have no idea. All the ones I have seen are very scraggly, though in the wild or Kings Park. Best ask King Park or a nursery. I hope you have success with them. They really are beautiful.


I hope you have enjoyed your visit to my blog. Thank you for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. I read and very much appreciate every comment and love hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return.