Grevillea, also known as the Spider Flower, is in the family Proteaceae and native almost exclusively to Australia (with a few exceptions found in New Caledonia, New Guniea and Indonesia). There are about 360 species of this evergreen species and are great for attracting birds, honeyeaters and bees. They recently have gained attention with Pacific Northwest gardeners because of their ability to tolerate summer drought and are hardy for cold, frosty conditions. They’re also easy to culture and offer an extremely long flowering season with diverse foliage, unusual flower forms and fragrance. Many are shunned by deer.
Traditionally, the flowers were used by Aborgines for their sweet nectar, which could be shaken in one hand or into a little water for a sweet drink. Drinking nectar directly from the flower should be avoided as some Grevillea produce flowers containing toxic cyanide!
I believe this particular species is the Grevillea Canberra Gem. We actually have the Wooly Grevillea, Grevillea lanigera, planned for part of the border along the fire road in our landscape plan. I'm excited to see what kinds of insects they will draw!
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