We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Banksia?

Niki Acker
Updated May 16, 2024
Our promise to you
HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At HomeQuestionsAnswered, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Banksia is a genus of wildflowers native to Australia, many of which are also cultivated as garden plants. There are about 170 species, some of which are threatened or endangered by loss of habitat, fire, and the water mold Phytophthora cinnamomi, commonly called dieback. Banksia grows in a variety of Australian climates, though no species grow in the desert. It produces abundant nectar and serves as a food source for bees and other insects, bats, birds, pygmy possums, and rats.

Plants in this genus are either shrubs or trees, the largest species reaching 100 feet (30 meters) in height. Perhaps the most notable feature of Banksia is the flower spike, a woody structure covered with hundreds or thousands of small flowers, which may be red, orange, yellow, pink, or violet. Some species do not have a flower spike, however. B. dentata, or tropical banksia, is the only species that grows outside of Australia, with a range encompassing northern Australia, Papua New Guinea, and the Aru Islands. Over 90 percent of species grow only in southwest Western Australia.

Banksia has adapted to survive bushfires by producing seeds that are stimulated by fire. Though fires kill many of the living plants, they also lead to new growth. Species that do not produce such seeds have either fire-resistant bark or lignotubers, structures that store nutrients and sprout new stems following fire. Despite these adaptations, Banksia is threatened by excessive bushfires that do not allow them time to regrow.

Another threat to the plants, Phytophthora cinnamomi or dieback, attacks the roots, causing them to rot and preventing them from absorbing water and nutrients. Infected plants die within a few years, and the disease is very difficult to treat. The dieback fungus thrives in moist soil, so over watering in gardens often leaves plants vulnerable.

Banksia species are popular as cut flowers and garden plants, though they are sometimes difficult to grow. The largest varieties are popularly planted in parks, streets, and gardens. The plant is also used by beekeepers as a source of abundant nectar, though it does not produce the best honey.

Another important product is the wood, which is used for ornamental purposes and to make small boats. The dried out flower spikes, often called cones, are also used to make decorative products, such as vessels and drink coasters. Australian Aborigines traditionally sucked on the flower spikes for their sweet nectar, or soaked them in water to make a sweet drink.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Niki Acker
By Niki Acker
"In addition to her role as a HomeQuestionsAnswered editor, Niki Foster is passionate about educating herself on a wide range of interesting and unusual topics to gather ideas for her own articles. A graduate of UCLA with a double major in Linguistics and Anthropology, Niki's diverse academic background and curiosity make her well-suited to create engaging content for WiseGeekreaders. "
Discussion Comments
Niki Acker
Niki Acker
"In addition to her role as a HomeQuestionsAnswered editor, Niki Foster is passionate about educating herself on a wide...
Learn more
HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.