Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Banksia Flowers & Fruit

Did you know there are about 173 species of banksia, and all but one occur naturally only in Australia? Banksias have distinctive cone-shaped blooms that are made up of hundreds (sometimes thousands) of tiny flowers grouped together in pairs that are open from the base, giving them a fluffy-like appearance. The color of these amazing flowers ranges from yellow and green to red and even silver, purple and black.

The fruits of banksias also called 'follicles' are hard and woody, and are often grouped together to resemble cones. The fruits protect the seeds from hungry animals and from fire. In many species the fruits will not open until they have been burnt or are completely dried out.

Banksias have definitely become very popular cut flowers due to their unique shape and extremely long vase life. Many varieties can be dried successfully and have no scent. Banksia cones 'fruit' are also used in floral designs because of their unusual shape and wonderful texture.

Banksia Care Tips: 

1. Keep cool when possible. 
2. Strip leaves from the bottom half of each stem 
3. Re-cut at least 1/2” off each stem and place in cold water 
4. Replace vase water every day as Banksia are very thirsty flowers. 
5. Never mist banksias as this could cause black marks to appear.

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