Today just can’t be winter.
There’s a perfect blue sky with a gentle mild breeze. It’s already 10°C/50°F and it’s not even midday!
The bees certainly aren’t complaining. Here they are on my Grevillea ‘Ned Kelly’, a hybrid cross between Grevillia banksii and Grevillia bipinnatifida
Very attractive to bees, wasps and the local wattle bird, but it will also attract other honey eaters.
Hardy to US Zone 8b: it still does need some protection from harder frosts. (It is growing under a few trees – you can see the trees in this post – in my garden which gives some protection).
It is never without flowers, but the main flush is late spring and summer.
Cutting the flowers for the house keeps the plant nice and bushy and under 1.5m tall and is really all the pruning it needs.
I have seen it grown in the UK/Southern Europe and the West Coast of the US (up to Seattle). If you are thinking of growing Australian Natives, just be sure to avoid fertilisers with a high phosphorous content; equally any manure – cow manure is the safest as it contains the fewest nutrients – should be very well rotted before applying.
Also, most Australian native shrubs are part of a forest understorey, so grow in bright, dappled shade for at least 3-4 hours each day.
And, just to keep the Australian theme going, here is a shot my old Eucalyptus piperita against todays’ brilliant blue sky.