How to grow grevilleas

How to grow grevilleas

Grevilleas are such an Australian classic plant.  Grevilleas are fantastic evergreen plants, ranging from small shrubs to large trees. They’re probably the most widely grown group of Australian plants. Grevilleas are incredibly diverse and offer many environmentally friendly planting options. Know for being easy to grow and striking blooms grevilleas make a wonderful addition to any Australian backyard and are a great way to bring a pop of colour to your winter garden.

If you have ever wondered how to grow grevilleas in Perth, Western Australia then look no further. A relatively plant to grow there are a few tricks to successfully growing grevilleas in Perth, but get these right and you will be laughing.

When to plant grevilleas in Perth:
The best time to plant grevilleas in Perth is autumn because the temperature is less extreme than summer. When winter rains come, new plants are assured of adequate moisture which is critical for root growth.  Perth’s relatively mild winters allow for continued root establishment right through spring.

By the time the first summer arrives the new plant has had six plus months to establish before temperatures begin to get hot. Setting new plants up with a very good chance of survival in the hotter summers of Perth

When do grevilleas flower?
Most of them flower from Winter to Spring but some will give you blooms all year round.

Types of grevilleas in Western Australia:
I’m going to breakdown the varieties of grevilleas down into four categories. These are low growing grevilleas, small growing grevilleas (pot plant grevilleas), medium sized grevilleas (shrubs), Tall screener grevilleas (large shrubs).

Low growing grevilleas
These low growing grevillea varieties are both spreaders and mounded Grevilleas. They are ideal for groundcover use, verge planting, and as spillers to cascade over retaining walls. They can also be grown in pots and baskets.

  • Grevillea Sea Spray – Orange-red coloured flower clusters over winter and spring, contrast beautifully with fine silvery foliage. Excellent ground cover spreading to 1m.
  • Grevillea Gin Gin Gem – Ground hugging, spreading plant, forming a dense mat of foliage. Small red flowers over winter-spring. Excellent ground cover and spiller. Capable of spreading several metres wide.
  • Grevillea lanigera Mt. Tamboritha – A lovely low growing ground cover variety with non-prickly foliage. Clusters of reddish-pink and cream flowers in late winter and spring.
  • Grevillea pinaster (Compact Form) – A great ground cover variety with a profusion of showy, red, spider-like flowers over winter and spring. Height to 50cm, width to 2m.

Small growing grevilleas (pot plant grevilleas)
These small varieties make ideal container pot plants and are an excellent choice as feature shrubs, borders or low hedges. Grouping a small cluster of them can make for a nice impact.

  • Grevillea Bonnie Prince Charlie – Lovely rounded small shrub with showy red/yellow flowers. Height 80cm, width to 1.2m.
  • Grevillea Lemon Daze – Compact shrub with bright yellow and pink flowers over autumn, winter and spring. Height to 1-1.5m and 1m across.
  • Grevillea Hills Jubilee – Compact variety to 1-1.5m high and 1m wide. Pink and white flowers.
  • Grevillea Tucker Time Fruit Box – Soft compact shrub with bunches of pink and white nectar-rich flowers from

Medium sized grevilleas (shrubs)
These are your mid-sized grevillea varieties which grow to between 1.5-2m tall. They are particularly attractive to birds and make spectacular feature shrubs. You can even plant them in pots if you prefer!

  • Grevillea Coconut Ice – Medium shrub with deeply divided foliage. Large showy, brushes of pink-red flowers for much of the year. Height and width to 1.5m.
  • Grevillea Deua flame – A beautiful Grevillea with unusual, large, broad leaves and flame-like pendulous clusters of red flowers from winter to early summer. Height to 1.5m, width to 1.3m. Very showy, looks great in a pot.
  • Grevillea Ned Kelly – Large flowered variety with orangered brushes throughout the year. Height 1-2m.
  • Grevillea Robyn Gordon – Popular, large flowered variety with pinkish-red brushes for long periods of the year. Height to 2m, width to 1.5m.
  • Grevillea Superb – Rounded shrub growing to 2m high and wide. Deeply divided foliage, with large red-orange flowers over winter – spring and spot flowering at other times. Similar to Robyn Gordon, wonderful feature plant or hedge.

Tall screener grevilleas (large shrubs)
These upright quick growers are ideal for screen and windbreak planting, or along a fence. These varieties are ideal for protecting your vegetable garden from the extremes of Perth’s summer months. These Grevillea olivacea group varieties are wonderful screening plants, performing particularly well on limestone soils.

  • Grevillea Apricot Glow – Fast growing grevilleas they are an evergreen shrub with deep green olive-shaped leaves. Clusters of apricot coloured spider-like flowers over autumn, winter and spring. Height 2-3m, width 2m.
  • Grevillea Olivacea Red – Olive-like foliage and red spidery flowers from winter to early summer. Height 2.5-4m, width 2.5-4m.
  • Grevillea Winparra Gold – Spectacular two-toned gold and pink bunched blooms. 2m high and wide. Tolerant to coastal conditions and limestone soils.
  • Grevillea moonlight – A wonderful feature plant due to its stunning white flower but also makes an effective informal screen or hedge.  A fantastic grevillea choice, especially for warmer climates like Perth. Check out how to grow grevillea moonlight.

How to grow grevilleas at home:

  1. Choose a  full sun to half shade location to plant. Prepare the planting area well by digging in a Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver and Plant Fertiliser.
  2. Dig the planting hole twice as wide and to the same depth as the root-ball.
  3. Carefully remove the grevillea plant from the pot being careful to disturb the roots as little as possible.
  4. Position your plant in the hole and back-fill with soil, gently firming down.  Form a raised or doughnut shaped ring of soil around the outer edge of the plant’s root zone. This helps keep water where it’s needed.  Always water in well after planting to settle the soil around the roots and keep the soil moist for several weeks while the new plant establishes.
  5. Mulch with woodchips and water in well.
  6. Feed in autumn and spring with Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver and Plant Fertiliser to promote strong root development, healthy leaf growth and lots of flowers.

Growing grevilleas in pots:

  1. Choose a compact grevillea that is suitable for growing in a container. Place the pot in a position that receives full sun to part shade.
  2. Fill the pot with a quality potting mix.
  3. Carefully remove the grevillea plant from the pot disturbing the roots as little as possible.
  4. Position in pot or container and fill with potting mix, gently firming down. Water in well.
  5. Mulch with woodchip and water in well.
  6. Feed in autumn and spring with Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver &andPlant Fertiliser to promote strong root development, healthy leaf growth and lots of flowers.

Growing grevilleas from cuttings:
It is best to take your cuttings from the hardened new growth that arises between during summer to early autumn.

  1. Make cuttings of about 7-10cm in length. Choose firm, semi-ripe shoots. This can be done during summer or early autumn. Keeping the cuttings cool like wrapping them in damp paper if not potting up straight away as they will dry out quickly
  2. Trim the leaves off the lower half of the cutting, ensuring no bark is torn off the stem.
  3. Remove young growing shoots or flowers.
  4. Dip the cut end into a rooting hormone powder to stimulate faster, more reliable root growth. Grevilleas prefer a low nutrient propagation mix, like 1:2 parts peat moss and coarse sand.
  5. Place the entire pot in a plastic bag and seal.
  6. The new cutting will produce roots in about 4 to 8 weeks, and can be potted up once the roots are 3-5cm long.

Growing grevilleas from seed:
Put mature pods in paper bag or place stocking over nearly mature seeds as they explode on opening.

The most usual method of pre-treatment is to ‘nick’ the outer seed coat or soak the seed in boiling water. This needs to be done with care to avoid damage to the embryo. Use the seed within 6 months.
Seed can be sown in normal seed raising mixes and seedlings can germination is from 2-8 weeks.

Should grevilleas be pruned?
Yes, grevilleas should be pruned. Give the bush a light prune back after flowering.

How often should I water grevilleas?
When you first plant your grevilleas you should be watering twice a week for two to three weeks, then once a week for about four weeks. Water more in hot, dry weather and less in winter or cooler, moist conditions. It’s important not to over

Best fertiliser for grevilleas:
Using the right fertiliser for grevilleas can directly improve your flower production. For disease and insect free healthy grevilleas fertiliser is a must.

Now the question; what is the best fertiliser for grevilleas?

Use a low phosphorus native plant fertiliser, because grevilleas are very well adapted to low phosphorus conditions. Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser is my pick in Australia.

When to fertilise grevilleas?
Feed in autumn and spring with a dynamic lifter and soil improver and plant fertiliser product.

Grevilleas companion plants:
Some great companion plants for grevilleas include grass trees, kangaroo paw, lillypilly, native daisy, flame pea,  Banksia and Acacia.

Grevilleas care and common problems:
There are a couple of problems to watch out for with grevilleas.

  1. Fungal pathogen (Phytophthora cinnamomi) attacks the conducting tissues of the plant, causing it to wilt and finally collapse.
  2. Scale – Small white, pink, black or brown patches or raised bumps on leaves and stems.

Leave us some comments about your experience growing grevilleas in Australia.

Check out our other how to grow in Perth guides:

1 thought on “How to grow grevilleas”

  1. I planted my large growing pink grevillea over a year ago here in Wanneroo. It has barely grown in that time and had been fertilised with native fertiliser twice a year along with dynamic lifter and blood and bone while being watered 3 times a week threw the summer. It was planted into native soil conditioner too. What am I doing wrong?


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