Dryandra is closely related to Banksia, and the flowers do look like small Banksia flowers. Each flower is very small, and many make up each cone-shaped flower-head, which are surrounded by bracts. Flowers in all 3 species are yellow or sometimes orange in colour. Leaves are spiky and look very like Banksia leaves.
D. polycephala flowers are bright yellow and dome-shaped with spiky anthers poking out. Each flower is ringed at the base by several thin spiky light-green leaves. D. formosa flowers are larger, darker yellow to orange and more tulip or cup-shaped, with narrow, fern-like leaves. D. quercifolia are more pointed when half open, and the centre of each flower can appear green. Fully open flowers are more rounded and spiky and are a light yellow colour. Leaves are sharp, and look like pointed oak leaves, hence the name.
Dryandra are grown in plantations and some may still be bush-picked. Most are grown in WA, SA, NSW or Victoria.
Types: Dryandra formosa, D. polycephala and D. quercifolia
What to look for
- Buy when the flowers are just starting to open, that is, when the spiky stamens have just started to pop out;
- Avoid bunches with brown leaf tips – yellow leaves are OK.
- Keep cool at all times.
- Wear gloves as Dryandra are prickly.
- Strip leaves from the bottom half of each stem and wash thoroughly.
- Recut at least 2 cm off each stem and place in water immediately.
- Do not bash or split stems.
- Always use a preservative as this will help buds to open and keep open flowers looking fresh.
- Replace vase water with fresh preservative every 2 to 3 days.
Interesting Facts about this Flower
Seeds are only released during a bushfire or when the plant dies.
There is an excellent website on Dryandra at the Australian Society for Growing Australian Plants
Botanical Name: Dryandra formosa, D. polycephala, D. quercifolia
Common Names: Bush Rose, Dryandra
Stem Length: 30 to 60 cm
Country of Origin: Australia: WA
Available Colours: Orange, Yellow