Correa baeuerlenii, the Chef’s Cap Correa, is a dense, rounded shrub reaching a height of two metres. We lightly prune our specimens and keep them to a dense 1.5 metres.
Leaves are narrowly ovate, up to seven centimetres long, glossy, with prominent glands on each surface and slightly aromatic when crushed. Tubular flowers are greenish yellow, about three centimetres long, solitary and pendulous. Flowering occurs between March and August with sporadic flowers at other times. The calyx is swollen with a flattened ridge reminiscent of a chef’s cap. The flower shape is unique amongst Correa blooms.
Correa baeuerlenii, occurs in scattered populations on the South Coast of NSW.
The species is regarded as vulnerable with small, scattered populations over an area exceeding 100 kilometres. Some populations are protected in Deua and Mimosa Rocks National Parks.
The survival of Correa baeuerlenii, as with many rare species, will be assisted by gardeners including plants in their domestic landscapes.
Correa baeuerlenii, is a handsome shrub even when not in flower. During the flowering period the unusual, pendulous flowers add interest to this unusual shrub.
We propagate our “Chef’s Caps” from cuttings. They tend to be slower that other Correas to produce roots.
The type specimen was collected by Wilhelm Baeuerlen in southern NSW and named by Ferdinand von Mueller in 1884.
For those interested in Correas we would recommend Correas Australian Plants for Waterwise Gardens by Maria Hitchcock, a life member of APS. This is a splendid publication covering all aspects of the identification, propagation and cultivation of this unique Australian genus.