Grevilleas are a diverse group of plants. Look around and you’re likely to find everything from ground-hugging evergreen shrubs to stately trees. These plants are related to dramatic proteas and are similarly loved for their intricate and spidery blooms that have a pleasing, sweet fragrance.
Grevilleas are subtropical and tropical shrubs and trees that sport a variety of types of foliage. Species with needlelike foliage are especially useful for adding interest to a planting of palms or other tropical plants with big leaves. Broad-leaf grevilleas are a welcome addition to any planting area. Grevillea foliage color ranges from yellow-green to medium and dark green. Bloom colors include white, pink, yellow, and orange.
With such a wide range of plants, there are countless ways you can utilize and enjoy the beauty of grevilleas in your yard. Use the larger-growing tree types to cast shade or act as a windbreak—and do so with beauty and grace. Shrubby types can be used as hedges and privacy screens or planted to provide an extra dose of color and texture in the back of garden beds and borders.
Compact types grow well in large containers, so you can enjoy these varieties on your deck or patio, even if you don't have a yard to plant them in. And because most types like hot weather, they're good choices for containers on driveways and other paved spots.
If you don't live in the subtropics, you don't have to feel left out. If you have a high-light spot inside, you can even grow these beauties as dramatic houseplants.
Most grevilleas come from Australia and islands in Southeast Asia. As such, they tend to appreciate warm temperatures and long growing seasons. Most varieties will not survive frosty or freezing temperatures. If you live in an area that only occasionally sees frosts, plant grevillea in a protected spot, such as near a building for protection, or grow them in containers so you can move them into a garage or shed overnight when it gets too cold for them outside.
These trees and shrubs grow best in a spot that sees full sun (at least 8 hours of direct sun per day) with well-drained soil. Once established, they tend to be drought tolerant—so you can practically plant them and forget them. That said, be careful not to overwater—most are sensitive to root rot. The plants don't usually thrive in a spot that sees regular irrigation or regularly sees standing water.
Indoors, grow grevillea in a spot with bright light. Select a container with drainage holes and pot them in a mix formulated for cacti and succulents. Take care never to overwater them.
More Varieties of Grevillea
'Long John' grevillea
This selection features deep rose-and-orange flower clusters in spring. It shows off soft, needlelike foliage and grows 10 feet tall and 12 feet wide. Zone 10
'Moonlight' is a fast-growing shrub that offers ivory white flowers. It grows 12 feet tall and 8 feet wide. Zone 10
'Penola' has gray-green, fine-textured foliage reminiscent of lavender plant. It shows off rose-pink flowers and grows 5 feet tall and 8 feet wide. Zone 10
'Poorinda Queen' grevillea
This selection boasts attractive apricot-pink flowers on its dense branches. It grows 6 feet tall and wide. Zone 10
This fast-growing tree is one of the easiest species to grow. It offers golden-orange flowers in spring and grows 60 feet tall. Zones 9-10
Spider net grevillea
Grevillea fililoba has fine, needlelike foliage and spidery clusters of reddish-pink flowers at the ends of the branches. This graceful shrub blooms through out the year. It grows 5 feet tall and wide. Zones 10-11
'White Wings' grevillea
Showing off pure white flowers on and off all year, this shrubby selection grows 10 feet tall and wide. Zone 10
'Winpara Gem' grevillea
Grevillea 'Winpara Gem' has soft, fernlike silvery gray-green leaves that make this cultivar a stellar plant year-round. It has striking red flower clusters in fall and winter. It grows 8 feet tall and wide. Zones 10-11
One of the hardiest and easiest-to-grow grevilleas, this variety has a neat and tidy growth habit, reaching about 5 feet tall and wide. Woolly grevillea has bright salmon pink flowers in late winter and spring. Zones 9-11
More varieties for grevillea
Grvillea 'Moonlight' grevillea
Grevillea 'Moonlight' is a large, fast-growing shrub that reaches 12 feet tall and 8 feet wide in short order. Aptly named, 'Moonlight' has a brilliant ivory-color, frilly flower spike. Zones 10-11