Plant of the Week

Banksia grandis

This large shrub to small tree has a thick grey wrinkly bark and spreading branches that form a rounded crown. It has glossy dark green lobed leaves and the pale yellow flowers appear in a cylindrical spike amongst the foliage from late spring to early summer.

Banksia grandis Willd. is naturally found in south-west Western Australia from Mt Lesueur to Cape Leeuwin and inland to Wooddanilling. It grows in coastal heath and woodlands and commonly seen in the Jarrah forests of the Darling Plateau, appearing from sea level to an altitude of 250 m (820 ft) or more. It grows in poor to moderately fertile white or grey sandy-stony and light loamy soil that is tending acidic with a pH range from 5.5 to 6.5.  It prefers an open sunny position but will tolerate some shade and is drought and light frost tolerant once established with a preferred minimum winter temperature of 7.2ºC (45ºF). It re-shoots after fire from epicormic buds.

The Bull Banksia is grown for its yellow flower heads and its toothed foliage. It is planted in parks and botanical collections as a specimen or in group plantings along borders to attract birds. It is also used in woodland settings or coastal positions preferring a Mediterranean climate (low humidity). It is suitable for inland regions and has a moderate growth rate establishing in 3-5 years and as a long-lived. Once established it has a low water requirement (Scale: 1-drop from 3), preferring to have dry surface soil before watering and the plant rots easily in wet soils.

ID 13.

UK hardiness zone H2
Climate zones 15 - 24, H1 

USDA Zone 9-10


Banksia (BANK-see-a) grandis (GRAN-dees)


Etymology

Genus:-  -         Banksia – Named after Sir Joseph Banks

Species:  Latin - grandis –“ great”  – referring to the large leaves



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