5 Reasons to Celebrate Wattle DayAugust 27, 2014

"I love the spring. It means the wattle comes out again. It is a symbol of everything one loves about Australia and the ideal of the uniqueness of Australia. To me every spring holds out the hope that it won't be long before Australia is completely independent [but I also] share Henry Lawson's view that blood should never stain the wattle."

- Manning Clark

Make no mistake that wattle isn't endemic in Australia. This flower also grows in other parts, but our forefathers have fond memories of it.

The early settlers pinned a wattle to remind them of the land. They found out that this flower could lived in favourable - and unfavourable - conditions. The resilience they could identified with, as they tried to cope with isolation. They must also lived with the land, which could be inhospitable at times. The learned that the wattle was the first to bloom during the first days of spring. It was also the first to regenerate after a bushfire.

It was fitting that the wattle was included in Australia's coat of arms, along with the country's other iconic figures. But this took years. (There was a long process to go through before this was approved.) It was the same thing with National Wattle Day, which was being observed on September 1. There are many reasons not to let this occasion pass by.

Here they are:

Wattle lets us welcome the spring. We know that winter in this part of the world is not that bitter and harsh. Nonetheless, there is something to celebrate when we see the plants and flowers in bloom. The wattle, all gold and green, is the most striking of the lot. This calls for a party, an outdoor gathering with barbeque and a game of cricket. It doesn't have to be formal, but this can be an option.

Wattle celebrates our diversity. Many don't know that wattle has six hundred species, one different from the other. It's not all gold and green as you think. This reminds us of our community, a melting pot full of energy. Artwork is what reminds us of this. Folk dancing is another thing. You can count the ways, but the thought remains the same.

Wattle makes us appreciative of our past. Behind the story of how the flower becomes a symbol of Australia is how our country undergone a transition. It has been a long journey, but every moment counts. One event is no less than memorable than the other. Decorating the classroom with wattle can be fun. Readig poetry and staging plays complete the set-up.

Wattle is the perfect time to wear gold and green. If you can't find anything golden, then look for bright yellow. We are talking about schools.

Wattle is a good excuse to go online. Why not tell your mates here - and abroad - about the good ol' wattle? Foreigners will like to take a closer look after posting on social media about its important role in the environment. Australia's equivalent to cherry blossoms? A good comparison, if you ask some.

We might miss something, so let us know your thoughts on this special flower.

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