Grevillea 'Lady O'


Family: Proteaceae

A shrub reaching 1.5 metres tall and spreading to 1 metre wide.

Grevillea ‘Lady O’ is a hybrid whose parents are a Grevillea victoriae hybrid and Grevillea rhyolitica.

The glossy leaves are about 3 cm long, to 1 cm wide and carried on slightly pendulous branches.

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 a mostly ovoid to cylindrical raceme (wider at the base), to about 7 cm long by 5 cm, bright red in colour.

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 25 mm long, bright red with red tips. The perianths are bright red with hints of yellow at the tips.

Plants can carry blooms for many months. In more temperate areas you could expect plants to be constantly in bloom.

In the garden

Author’s notes:

The flowers are rich in nectar and are a magnet for honeyeaters.

Both foliage and flowers are attractive features. Light pruning is appreciated.

Grevillea ‘Lady O’ is a very hardy hybrid and has proved to be frost tolerant and once established has low water requirements. It is a product of the Bywong Nursery, in southern New South Wales. This nursery is producing a wide range of interesting native plant cultivars and hybrids.

This hybrid would be an ideal addition, as a foreground shrub, in native garden beds.

Grow in an open sunny spot with good drainage.


Must be propagated from cuttings to retain ‘true-to-type’ form.

Other information

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.

‘Lady-O’ – reason for name is unknown.

Gardening with Angus – Grevillea ‘Lady-O’ profile page       https://www.gardeningwithangus.com.au/grevillea-lady-o-grevillea/

Australian Native Plants Society – Australia – Grevillea ‘Lady-O’ profile page https://anpsa.org.au/plant_profiles/grevillea-lady-o/

By Warren and Gloria Sheather. Editing and additional text by Dan Clarke