Templetonia retusa (Cocky's Tongues)


Templetonia retusa or Cocky's Tongues


Australia has some wild and wonderful members of the pea family and this has to be one of my favorite. Cocky's Tongues, named for its resemblance to a Cockatoos tongue (squint and use your imagination) transforms from a mild-mannered shrub into a riot of red flowers that last for weeks. Peak bloom in late winter when a dose of warm color is needed in the garden.


Cocky's Tongues needs a good pruning after flowering to keep it looking full. Aim for a pruned size of between 4'-5' high and slightly less wide. Soil should be well drained and in full sun for best flowering. Hardy to at least 24f-26f.