Grevillea ‘Splendour’ reaches a height of 2 metres with a spread of 1 metre.
The narrow, lanceolate leaves are blue-green, to six centimetres long and to 1 cm wide.
Grevillea ‘Splendour’ is a hardy, colourful hybrid whose parentage is a trifle confused. One parent is reputed to be G. shiressii whilst the other may be G. speciosa, G. oleoides or a G. victoriae hybrid. Regardless of this confusion, Grevillea ‘Splendour’ is well worth cultivating. The appearance of the leaves is reminiscent of G. shiressii, one of the parents.
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, with inflorescences to about 4 cm long by 8 cm wide. They are bright pink-red, and can be produced profusely over most of the year.
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 40 mm long, red-pink, with yellow-tips.
Author’s note: We have a number of specimens in our garden and they have proved to be drought resistant, frost tolerant and free flowering.
To maintain dense growth, regular pruning is appreciated.
Hardy once established, in a sunny site on well-drained soil. Large clusters of bright red flowers are carried for most of the year. Honeyeaters are fond of the blooms. Both foliage and flowers are attractive features.
Must be propagated from cuttings to retain true-to-type form.
The hybrid arose as a chance seedling in a Melbourne Garden in 1976. The cultivar was first registered in November 1988.
Grevillea ‘Ruby Clusters’ appears to be an alternative name.
Editor’s note: It seems there are the registered cultivars ‘Splendour’ and ‘Poorinda Splendour’ which are reported to come from different parents respectively. It seems that some online nursery websites are confusing the two, based on posted photographs.
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.
‘Splendour’ – likely a simple name based on the showy red inflorescences.
Windyridge Nursery – Grevillea ‘Splendour’ profile page https://www.grevilleas.com.au/grev44.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.