The plant of the month for November is Grevillea robusta, known widely as the Silky Oak.
It can grow quite large depending on the environment where it is grown. Along gullies and watercourses it can grow upwards of 35 metres but in a suburban environment growth up to 15 metres over 25 years could be expected. It has dark grey bark, dark green lobed foliage and stunning golden-orange flowers. Leaves are long and hairless on top with a fine covering of silky hairs below. Flowers are orange-yellow, toothbrush-like branched racemes in spring, . Seed capsules are woody and brown-grey to about 20mm.
This tree is used widely in gardens but is also very useful to control erosion around stream and river banks, and to reclaim old pasture land. The Silky Oak is one of the most popular ornamental native trees in Australia, and are widely grown here and also overseas as shade-trees and for their ability to adapt. These trees are renowned for the quality of the wood which is used for cabinet making.
This species occurs naturally in south-eastern Queensland and north-eastern New South Wales and is now cultivated around the world for the stunning display of orange flowers which attract birds and for its ease of culture and adaptability. The Jacaranda and the Illawarra Flame tree flower at the same time which makes a spectacular colourful display.
Available now in the Nursery