Friday, 22 August 2008

Coast Needlebush

...Hakea decurrens

The University of Tasmania's Key to Tasmanian Seed Plants states that Hakea decurrens (formerly H.sericea) is "an uncommon shrub found in Tasmania only in the Furneaux Group (Cape Barren, Clarke and Flinders Islands)". The book 'Living with Plants' by McLeod & Gray says Hakea sericea was was once widespread between Burnie and Devonport but now can only be found at Rocky Cape National Park. I cannot find any other reference to the plant being at Rocky Cape. However, it is not hard to imagine a widespread loss of coastal heath species between Burnie and Devonport as the Bass Highway and the Railway line run right along the coast for much of the route between these towns. In any case, my little bit of north-west coast has three plants which I purchased from a Tasmanian native plant nursery last year. All are doing well. They flowering peaks in July and August so they will provide plenty of winter nectar for the honeyeaters.

Note: This plant is much more widespread in N.S.W & Vic

(Click images for larger versions)

Coast Needlebush - Hakea decurrens - Inflorescence

Coast Needlebush - Hakea decurrens - Fruit

Coast Needlebush - Hakea decurrens - Leaves


  1. We have a similar plant up here - Hakea actites - which has been flowering for a few weeks now. From your pictures the leaves and fruit look very similar but the flowers are white without any hint of pink.

  2. Thanks Mck - This one also comes in a cream flowered form but not white.

  3. Not another name change, haven't these taxonomists got something better to do, like cryptic crosswords for instance!

  4. Great pictures, love them. :-) I am from Sweden and you have much more animals life down there,,,
    Have a nice day (or night, or evening)

  5. Thanks Duncan - it all get a bit confusing at times doesn't it.

    Thanks Anki - Sweden has some great wildlife. When I lived in Scotland there were three countries I wanted to visit (but never got the chance) Norway, Sweden, and Icelenad. Maybe it's genetic as I have a few Norse names in the family tree :-)

  6. Saw one of these at Rocky Cape just last Saturday. They're beautiful. The red stems as well as the pink and cream flowers.
    Love the blog.