Grevillea ‘Evelyn’s Coronet’ is a rounded shrub to 2 metres tall by 2 metres wide.
It is a hybrid whose parents are thought to be Grevillea buxifolia and Grevillea lavandulacea. The hybrid arose in a Lane Cove, Sydney, garden in 1972 and was registered in 1976.
The narrow-oblong leaves are about 20 mm long with turned-down (recurved) margins and pointy ends.
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 mostly produce the inflorescences at the terminals, beyond the foliage, which differs to the closely related Hakea.
This cultivar has spider-racemes (crown-like), carried upright on the ends of branches. They are woolly, greyish-pink with bright pink styles.
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 to 4 cm long; red to pink-red. The perianths have a very interesting combination of red and grey to dark grey – hairy. The flower shape and to a certain extent the colour are reminiscent of Grevillea buxifolia blooms. Flowers are carried through spring and summer.
We find this hybrid to be hardy, free flowering and certainly easier to grow than Grevillea buxifolia in our cold climate garden. Pruning keeps our plants compact and blooming bounteously.
It is reported to be reliable and hardy, even in the subtropics and will tolerate frost. It grows best in full sun and can tolerate a range of soils. It may be short-lived but can be used as a screening plant for several years. Great for creating density and filling gaps in the garden.
Must be propagated from cuttings to retain ‘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”.
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.
‘Evelyn’s Coronet’ – named for Evelyn Hickey in whose garden it arosed in Lane Cove, Sydney and the inflorscence resembling coronets or crowns.
Australian National Herbarium – Grevillea ‘Evelyn’s Coronet’ profile page https://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/gnp12/grevillea-evelyns.html
Oz Native Plants – Grevillea ‘Evelyn’s Coronet’ profile page https://www.oznativeplants.com/plantdetail/zz/Grevillea/zz/cv-Evelyns-Coronet.html
Wrigley, J.W. & Fagg, M.I. (2001). Australian Native Plants – Propagation, cultivation and use in landscaping. 4th edition. New Holland Publishers, Pty. Ltd. Australia.