Australian Silver Oak - Grevillea Robusta

The Australian Silver-oak tree (Grevillea robusta) is, as you can infer from its name, native to Australia. Although it is called by term "Oak" it is not really a true Oak in that it is not a member of the quercus genus. Or put more simply it is not a tree that produces acorns.

It is, none the less, a very beautiful and interesting tree in its own right. There are three things about this tree that really stand out to me; its bright yellow and red flowers, its dramatic leaves and it curious little seed pods. The images above and below were taken of a tree not far from my home in Malaga, Spain just when the flowers were beginning to unfold.

On some of the trees the branches have so many flowers that the tree itself takes on a yellow and red flame color.
The little black seed capsules are about 1cm in size and split open along one side when they are ready to release their seeds.
The leaf of the Australian Silver Oak is alternately compound and the individual leaflets have a dramatic "flame-like" shape.

24 comments:

  1. Unless the tree is on the street in front of your house where it drops sap on the vehicles below and enough leaves to cover the roof and fill the gutters. I think it should be removed from any city street!

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  2. May be this guy should go live on Juliter where there are no trees :|

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  3. what about its commercial uses how it can be cultivated

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  4. I've got one in Santa Cruz CA, and it has stood for 25 years, but the top 10 ft broke off and
    is mostly covered with green spanish moss on
    top half, so not really doing too well here.
    A pretty tree, but without pruning it developed
    really long branches (20 ft) that can break
    easily. Although evergreen, it drops plenty of leaves, and is susceptable to wind damage (can loose a LOT of leaves and break branches).
    Nevertheless, I like it, and the flowers are pretty (pretty strange too). Full size is probably 35-40 feet, fast growing and reaching that size in 20 years or so.

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  5. I have this tree in Hollywood Florida - it drops leaves about 3 times a year and it is a constant mess for about 1 month and the dried leaves cut your hands when you pick them up to bag. Not good for yards!

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  6. famously grown on coffee estates in India for its semishade giving canopy and ability to withstand the fiercest winds

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  7. I just had my tree removed yesterday. It was a mess and nobody really liked it. Dry leaves all year round But the tree trunk was solid and straight though.

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  8. I wonder what happened to the anoymous june mans tree? did he cut his down too? Dont forget without our trees we have no oxygen and without oxygen!! no man......

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  9. We know this tree as a Silky Oak or sometimes a Queensland Maple. is native here isnt it ? Queensland Australia. We have made furniture from it for a very long time. lots of antiques are Silky Oak

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  10. Can anyone confirm that this tree repells mosquitos? In such a case, then it can be used as effective mosquito repellent.

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  11. thiss guy is sooooooooooooooooooooooooo cool leave him alone dude ur awsomeeeeeeeeeee

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  12. I live in Los Angeles and I have seven of these trees up to 80 ft high in my back yard. Although they are very nice looking and offer a lot of shade, they drop debris about 9 months out of the year. They also seem to be toxic as most tree trimmers do not want to trim them. The flowers and seeds contain "hydrogen cyanide" know to cause dermatitis in children. It was also used as rat (and human) poison. My kids all have severe dermatitis and I never knew why until now. I wish I could afford to have them all removed.

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  13. I live in central Florida and we had one in our front yard 40 years ago. One of my current neighbors down the street has one. It is a messy tree but beautiful in its own way and very unique. It is May and is in bloom. Luckily it is near the street and where no one parks or has to sit under it. My mother told me it was an oak so I persued that to find out what it was really called and now it all makes sense.

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  14. I call it the "Syrup Tree". It literally rains down sugar. But it rinses off easily with water and does no damage to the car. Other down sides...constantly producing trash...leaves...pods...barrels of it. The leaves will stain the car if they sit on it wet for a time.

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  15. the silver oak winery makes great wine too

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  16. I live in Adelaide, South Australia and we have one growing in our back yard. Still deciding if I like this tree to be honest- it does drop a lot of debris which is a lot of work to sweep up. It does however have the most amazing sweet maple smell to it, which warms the soul and the native birds here seem to love it.

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  17. is the honey editable

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  18. I have heard that if this tree is growing anywhere near a concrete driveway or a house or garage on a concrete slab, it's roots will likely heave and crack the concrete.
    We are on the Big Island of Hawaii and are experiencing some heaving and cracking of our concrete driveway which is adjacent to 4 or 5 Silver Oaks and wonder if this is the cause?

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  19. This tree (we call it Silky Oak colloquially) is native to the area I live in South East Queensland, Australia. I love it but my neighbors hate the mess. If it wasn't growing naturally here already I probably wouldn't grow it for that reason. Benefits from sympathetic pruning. Ours has been known to drop large limbs in severe storms but that is not uncommon for Australian native trees. The timber is beautifully fiqured.

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  20. I think it is a beautiful tree. I had to cut one down and I milled the wood and used it in the construction of my house. The wood is very, very
    nice. and luckily the sawdust didn't bother me.

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  21. I live in L.A. and have one in front of my house, I am trying to get rid of it but it is owned by the city. It drops debris most of the year and it is just not worth the fight to have it for shade.

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  22. It is a dead giveaway when something drops off and stains what it falls on. This tree has fabulous dyeing qualities! So use the leaves for dyeing and poisoning your next door neighbour if you don't like him.It can cause an itchy dermatitis like rash in some people. Don't brush up against it will cure that.Hopefully it will kill all your mosquito's.If you live in Hawaii your drive way will lift and crack from volcano eruptions dont worry about Aussie tree roots.

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  23. The silver oak above us drops huge 10-30 ft. branches in the wind, very dangerous if you happen to be under it. San Francisco is a windy place sometimes. The leaves drop constantly, but we use them for compost, so that's no problem, they break down easily. It provides nice shade and good vibes instead. Ours doesn't have many flowers at all.
    It's too tall and top heavy, DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW THESE TREES SHOULD BE TRIMMED SO THEY DON'T DROP SUCH BIG LIMBS?? TOPPED?.......(I've seen shorter ones that flower with beautiful orange ringlets, unusual...) From what I read here and my experience, this tree tends to shed big limbs in the wind.

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