G. ‘Austraflora Canterbury Gold’ is a low growing shrub reaching 1.5 metres in height and potentially spreading to 4 metres wide.
Grevillea ‘Austraflora Canterbury Gold’ is said to be a hybrid between G. juniperina (prostrate yellow form) and a variety of G. victoriae. The hybrid was developed by Austraflora Nursery, Victoria. The hybrid arose in a garden in Canterbury Road, Blackburn, Victoria in 1971 (hence the hybrid name) and was registered in the late 1970s.
Leaves are lanceolate to elliptic, about 40 millimetres long by 5 mm wide; with a grey-green colour above and much paler below. The large, nectar-rich flower clusters are yellow to gold in colour.
A grevillea inflorescence is technically a cluster of paired flowers, termed a conflorescence with the overall structure forming a raceme-like appearance. Grevillea species exhibit 3 main inflorescence structures:
1. A cylindrical to ovoid raceme (with flowers emerging around a 360° radius)
2. A single-sided raceme (with flowers produced on only one side, resembling a tooth-brush)
3. A condensed or clustered raceme (usually as long as it is wide, with species referred to as the “spider-flowers”)
Grevillea produce the inflorescences at the terminals, beyond the foliage, which differs to the closely related Hakea.
This cultivar is a spider-flower type. The inflorescences are golden-yellow in colour, to about 3 cm wide by 2 cm long. Plants become covered in flowers from late winter through spring and can flower sporadically at other times.
Individual flowers are composed of 1 carpel (female part) where the style and stigma protrude out; 4 stamens hidden away in the perianth; and the perianth (petals and sepals collectively) which connects to a pedicel. Proteaceae flowers do not have any discernible petals or sepals (having only one whorl) and so these are referred to as “tepals” of which there are 4.
In this cultivar, the carpels are golden-yellow to about 25 mm long. The perianths are also golden yellow, to about 10 mm long.
Grevillea ‘Austraflora Canterbury Gold’ has proved to be very hardy, drought and frost tolerant with eye catching, bird attracting flowers. Many of our specimens are well over ten years old. Tip prune occasionally to keep plants compact.
In our cold climate garden (near Armidale, NSW) plants reach a height of about 1.5 metres with a similar spread.
Unfortunately, this hybrid appears to have gone out of “horticultural fashion”. We rarely see plants for sale in nurseries.
It grows well in full sun on a reasonably-drained soil.
All cultivars must be propagated by cuttings to maintain “true-to-type” form.
Grevillea is a diverse genus of about 360 species of evergreen flowering plants native to rainforest and more open habitats in Australia, New Guinea, New Caledonia, Sulawesi and other Indonesian islands east of the Wallace Line. NSW currently has about 85 species although with a lot of subspecies and some informal taxa recognised.
Grevillea flowers were a traditional favourite among First Nations Peoples for their sweet nectar. This could be shaken onto the hand to enjoy, or into a coolamon with a little water to make a sweet drink. They might be referred to as the original “bush lollies”.
Most Grevillea species will regenerate from seed after fire but can produce coppicing shoots.
Grevillea – was named in honour of Charles Francis Greville (1749-1809), an 18th-century patron of botany and co-founder of the Royal Horticultural Society. He was also a British antiquarian, collector and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1774 to 1790.
‘Austraflora Canterbury Gold’ – developed by AustraFlora Nusery from a plant which came from Canterbury Road, Blackburn, Victoria.
Wrigley, J.W. & Fagg, M.I. (2001). Australian Native Plants – Propagation, cultivation and use in landscaping. 4th edition. New Holland Publishers, Pty. Ltd. Australia.