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New South Wales is home to a diverse wealth of plant life including the prehistoric Wollemi Pine that shared the land with the now extinct Australian megafauna. Other plants are celebrated for their spectacular floral displays, such as the unique flowering cones of the Banksia, the coarse whorls of the Bottlebrush, along with the Waratah which was chosen for the floral emblem of New South Wales.
Indigenous Australians have always harvested plant products to treat common ailments, such as colds and flu remedies made available from the oil of the Eucalyptus tree. Today, a growing cottage industry encourages the use of native, locally grown ingredients as an alternative to imported products with many now enjoying the Native Hibiscus Flower with a glass of champagne or the Desert Lime replacing other species of lime for cooking.
Native plants are often celebrated in artistic life and many have grown up with May Gibb’s delightful children’s book characters, including the Wattle and Gumnut ‘babies’.