The indigenous season of Bunuru, also known as "Second Summer", falls in February - March and is the hottest time of the year with little to no rain. Hot easterly winds continue with a cooling sea breeze most afternoons if you're lucky enough to be close to the coast.
Traditionally for the Noongar people this was, and still is, a great time for living and fishing by the coast, rivers and estuaries. Because of this, freshwater foods and seafood made up major parts of the diet during this time of year. In late summer and autumn of each year, families would traditionally get together in large numbers around freshwater sources along the coast, to hold their annual meetings and gatherings.
Bunuru is also a time of the white flowers with lots of white flowering gums in full bloom, including Jarrah, Marri and Ghost Gums. Noongar people may make a sweet drink by pulling the blossoms off flowering gum trees, steeping them in water, and drinking the water.
White gum flowers in Bunuru
Another striking flower in bloom in Bunuru is the female Zamia (Macrozamia riedlei). Much larger than its male counterpart, the huge cones emerge from the centre of the plant with masses of a cotton wool like substance.
As the hot, dry weather continues, the seed upon the cones change from green to bright red, indicating they're ripening and becoming more attractive to animals, particularly the emu, that will eat the toxic fleshy outer.
What to Plant in Perth in Bunuru (February-March)
February is the last month to sow many of the warm weather crops and also time to start sowing to be ready for Autumn plantings. February may be a little early yet but some people will be thinking about starting off their brassica seeds - this includes veggies like cauliflower, broccoli and cabbage. Here are the other seeds which can be planted in Perth in Bunuru:
When germinating seeds in hot weather, it is important to keep them moist (but not wet) by misting regularly with water. For more tips on growing from seed check out our article for our top tips for growing vegies from seed.
Bunuru is a good time to think about putting in a green manure crop in preparation for autumn/winter crops. A green manure crop can help to replenish the soil after heavy feeding summer crops have depleted the nutrients. Bunuru is also a time to keep feeding summer crops to get the most out of their growing season. With hot days still to come, apply some seaweed tonic to reduce stress on plants as stressed plants are more susceptible to attack from pests.