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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Banksia seminuda - River Banksia

The River Banksia is one of the largest growing banksias, reaching 50-60 feet tall with a straight trunk. This one has been limbed up, my hunch is to keep people from sleeping under. 

One of many beautiful specimens at UCSC arboretum.

Leaves are evergreen, alternate, simple, 3-5" long, narrow, leathery, dark green upper and white lower surfaces, margins light serrated.

Looks good from underneath.

Flowers in the fall, red/orange flowers in 8" long by 3" wide inflorescences with hundreds of individual flowers in pairs. Flowers can also be yellow, UCSC arboretum was selling some last year.

Fruits are aggregated into woody clusters looking like a cone. Few flowers actually produce fruit. Those that do are larger and when they open remind one of clams. Love the coloration of the "cone".

Remnants of the flowers with no fruit maturing.

Bark is interesting, fissured, orangish and gray.

Other Banksias I guess. I have seen B. integrifolia around quite a bit, but they have smaller clusters of flowers, and not orange.

Santa Cruz
1111A River Street (Highway 9)

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