Herb: Silky Oak

Latin name: Grevillea robusta

Family: Proteaceae

Edible parts of Silky Oak:

The flowers are one of the richest sources of nectar. This can be sucked directly from the flowers, shaken into a bowl or washed out in a small quantity of water. The nectar falls in showers when the flowers are shaken.

Description of the plant:


30 m
(98 feet)

to May

Habitat of the herb:

Temperate rainforests

Other uses of Silky Oak:

The plant yields small quantities of a gum resin. The leaves contain rutin, though quantities are not specified. Intense yellow and green dyes are obtained from the leaves. This tree is one of the most important reafforestation trees in Nepal. This species is more resistant than other members of the genus to root-rotting fungus, it is sometimes used as a rootstock for the more susceptible species. Wood - strong, silky textured, light, easily split, durable but porous. Used for panelling, joinery, cabinet making etc. A good fuel.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow February in a warm greenhouse. Germination is usually good. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, June/July in a frame.

Cultivation of Silky Oak:

Temperate rainforests

Medicinal use of the herb:

None known

Known hazards of Grevillea robusta:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.