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         Kangaroo paw

Anigozanthos spp. (a-nee-go-ZAN-thus)

Kangaroo paw

Kangaroo paws produce clusters of woolly, flattened, tubular blossoms that are 1 to 3 inches long. Their reflexed lips and fuzzy texture give them a resemblance to kangaroo toes. The size of the florets, stem heights and flower colors will vary depending on species and cultivars.


Anigozanthos varieties are available in red, pink, burgundy, orange, yellow, golden yellow, red/green, yellow/green, purple/green, black/green, yellow/orange and red/black.

Kangaroo paws can last for eight to 25 days.

Here are some popular varieties of kangaroo paws.
• ‘Amber Velvet’, large orange flowers
• ‘Big Red’, bright red flowers
• ‘Bush Dawn’, yellow flowers
• ‘Bush Devil’, red flowers on red stems
• ‘Bush Games’, green and red flowers
• ‘Bush Garnet’, burgundy red flowers
• ‘Bush Gold’, golden yellow flowers
• ‘Bush Pearl’, dwarf variety, pink flowers
• ‘Bush Ranger’, dwarf variety, red flowers on red stems
• ‘Bush Sunset’, dark red flowers
• ‘Bush Tango’, golden yellow flowers
• ‘Gold Velvet’, large gold flowers
• ‘Harmony’, yellow flowers with red stems
• ‘Orange Cross’, orange flowers
• ‘Pink Joey’, dwarf variety, pink flowers
• ‘Red Cross’, burgundy red flowers
• ‘Regal Claw’, orange-red flowers
• ‘Regal Velvet’, small green and red flowers

Kangaroo paws are available year-round.

REFRIGERATION Kangaroo paws are somewhat chill sensitive. Store them in floral coolers at 36 F to 38 F. Provide good air circulation, high humidity, light and flower food.
ETHYLENE SENSITIVITY Kangaroo paws are slightly sensitive to ethylene gas.

BLOOMS When choosing kangaroo paws, look to see that the first one or two flowers per stem are open. If flowers are too tight, they may not open completely. Watch for any signs of wilt, blossom drop, rot or mold when making selections.

MEANING Anigozanthos comes from the Greek words “anoigo” (to open) and “anthos” (flower), referring to the widely open flowers.
FAMILY Anigozanthoses are members of the Haemodoraceae, or bloodwort, family. Close relatives include Conostyles, Lachnanthes and Xiphidiums.
ORIGINS Anigozanthoses are natives of Australia, where they inhabit moist areas of open forests in the Southwest.
HISTORY Anigozanthos manglesii is the state floral emblem of Western Australia. The flower appears on the crest of all government departments and many government publications.

DESIGN TIPS Kangaroo paws dry well for use in long-lasting designs. Allow them to dry in the vase gradually, or hang them upside down in a well-ventilated area for about two weeks.

Some information provided by:
San Marcos Growers,
The Chain of Life NetworkÆ,

You may reach “Cut Flower of the Month” writer Steven W. Brown, AIFD, at or by phone at (415) 239-3140.

Images courtesy of the California Cut Flower Commission and the Flower Council of Holland

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