Banksia is a large genus of over 200 species in the Protea family, having been increased in size through the transfer of species in the former genus Dryandra to Banksia (see footnote box). The genus is almost exclusively Australian, being found in all States and Territories. A single species (B.dentata) is found in islands to Australia’s north as well as in tropical Australia.
Banksia proteoides is a small to medium shrub to about 1- 2 metres high by a similar width. The leaves are long and narrow, being up to 25 cm long with prickly, triangular teeth along each side. Very large flower heads up to 100mm in diameter are formed in spring. These are brownish-yellow in colour with pinkish brown bracts. The flowers tend to form on older branches and are often concealed within the foliage.
B.proteoides is one of the more difficult species to grow but has been successful in sandy soils in inland areas and other locations of low summer humidity. It prefers full sun or partial shade and is tolerant of at least moderate frost.
Propagation from seed is relatively easy and cuttings are also successful but may not give a high percentage strike.
* EPBC Act = Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999
ROTAP = Rare or Threatened Australian Plants (Briggs and Leigh, 1988)
For further information refer the Australian Plants at Risk page
[su_box title=”Transfer of Dryandra to Banksia” style=”default” box_color=”#efefef” title_color=”#808080″ radius=”3″]A paper published in 2007 proposed that the genus Dryandra be subsumed into Banksia. This revised classification has been accepted by the Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria and the new Banksia names now appear on Florabase (the website for the Western Australian Herbarium) and in the Australian Plant Census.
The new classification has come in for some criticism but, as the Austraian Plant Census has been adopted as the authority on plant names by ANPSA, the revised classication has been accepted on the ANPSA website. The previous Dryandra names will also be mentioned where appropriate. For further information refer to our Banksia page.[/su_box]
Banksia proteoides (syn. Dryandra proteoides)
Photo: Margaret Pieroni