Banksia grandis

bull banksia
Bull banksia sports cream yellow flower clusters that fade to tan at branch tips. Large shrub prefers sandy soils, low water. Thick serrated leaves add interest.
Banksia grandisBanksia grandisBanksia grandis
height 8–12ft
width 5–7ft
tolerates Coast, Drought, Fog, Pots, Rooftops, Neglect, Salt, Wind
Low – Moderate
Banksia are from mediterranean climates of Australia and adapt well to California, particularly along the coast. They appreciate good drainage, but are somewhat adaptable to heavier soil as long as watering is infrequent (once established) and they are in a sunny spot. Once established they will grow and look their best with deep watering every other week to once a month during summer. If they have sharp drainage they will tolerate even more water.
exposure Part Shade – Full Sun
drainage In Ground: Cactus Mix, In Pots: Cactus Mix, Tolerates Sandy Soil
fertilizing Bloodmeal, Fish Emulsion, Low Needs, No Phosphorus
origin SW Australia

Sunset Zones Map

Outdoor Exposure Guide


Full Sun
Six or more hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Shade
Three to five hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Sun
One to two hours of sun beams directly landing on the plants leaves.

Full Shade
The plant is never fully lit by sun beams, but is in a bright spot or has dappled sunbeams playing over the leaves throughout the day.

Deep Shade
The plant never has dappled light on the leaves, and is in a place that feels dim, even on a nice sunny day.


Growing Notes

This banksia has a thick bushy form, but can be kept smaller by pruning. Don’t prune more than two years of growth or you risk the plant not budding back. Though many banksia are known to burn to the ground in fire, and then regrow. You can also prune them up to force a more treelike form, this is best started early.
Banksia prefer mildly acidic soil, and if your PH is on the high side you can add cottonseed meal or other mild acidifying fertilizer to lower it. They appreciate nitrogen in the form of fish emulsion or blood meal, but never give them any significant phosphorus and avoid potassium.

Special Interest

Long lasting cut flowers are followed by decorative cones.