Native Cherry Exocarpos cupressiformis which is a local species semi-parasitic on the roots of other plants is proving very difficult to propagate from seed or from cuttings. In February 2004 I set cuttings from actively growing suckers found where a grader had damaged the roots of a roadside Native Cherry, and although one of the cuttings struck roots that same year the resultant plant wasn’t strong enough to plant out until November 2010! I planted it 1m away from the mature Yellow Gum tree favoured by the Tawny Frogmouth pair who are familiar to readers of this blog. Close to it I planted 4 or 5 small local species including Wattle Mat-rush and Chocolate lily for it to latch onto until it found the Yellow Gum roots.
Six years after planting it out the Native Cherry has only reached knee high, and is so spindly you can’t even see it in the centre of this photo. Today I have planted some extra companions around it: Sticky Everlasting Daisies, Running Postman, Nodding Saltbush, Small-flowered Mat-rush, Gold-dust Wattle and Wallaby Grass. The soil was very dry despite a rainy winter so perhaps it just needs more regular watering? I am interested to hear from anyone else who has successfully propagated and grown on this species. It is frustrating not being able to include it in local revegetation projects when it is obviously an important component of local ecosystems: providing shade for resting roos, food for larvae of butterflies, and yummy berries for many species including humans.