Banksia elatior R.Br.
Banksia serratifolia Salisb.
Banksia aemula is an evergreen shrub or a small tree growing up to 8 metres tall[
The plant can be harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of wood. It is often grown as an ornamental, especially in Australia.
Australia - New South Wales, Queensland
Near-coastal consolidated sand dunes, in swales, on flats and sometimes on sandstone, in low woodland or tall shrubland[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Banksia aemula is found in the warm temperate and sub tropical zones of eastern Australia, where it also just enteres into the tropical zone. It can tolerate short-lived frosts, possibly to as low as -5°c[
Requires a sunny position and a light, well-drained soil[
]. Tolerant of salt-laden winds[
The plant grows in areas where bushfires naturally occur at fairly frequent intervals. It has evolved mechanisms to allow it to survive this. Firstly, it has a thick bark that can insulate it from less intense fires; it can regrow from epicormic shoots, developing along the trunk about a week after the fire[
]. In addition, the heat of a fire stimulates the seeds to be shed from the 'cone', allowing the seeds to germinate and become established in the newly cleared soil[
The flowers are rich in nectar and this is sometimes harvested as a food[
]. It is best harvested in the morning before birds and evaporation deplete the yields[
]. The flowers can be sucked or soaked in water in order to obtain the nectar[
Wood deep red, coarse-grained, prettily marked, shrinks unequally in drying ; an excellent wood for the cabinetmaker[
Seed - surface sow in an ericaceous compost as soon as the seed is ripe or as soon as it is obtained and do not exclude light. Seal the pot in a plastic bag until germination takes place, which can take 1 - 3 months or more at 20°c[
]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, mid summer in sand in a frame[