Photo  W.R.Barker

Photo  W.R.Barker


Hakea constablei L.A.S.Johnson, Contr. New South Wales Natl. Herb. 3: 94 (1962)

T: Bowens Ck, Bilpin–Mt Irvine road, 1750 ft [533 m], N.S.W., 6th Oct. 1950, E.F.Constable NSW16415; holo: NSW; iso: ?AD, K, MEL, PERTH.


Slender to bushy shrub or small tree, 1.8–6 m high, not resprouting. Branchlets densely tomentose or appressed-pubescent, persistent until flowering. Leaves not widely divergent, terete, not grooved, 3–11 cm long, 1–1.6 mm wide, sparsely to densely appressed-sericeous, quickly glabrescent or persistent; apex porrect with mucro 1–2.5 mm long.

Inflorescence of 6–12 flowers; rachis simple, 0.8–4 mm long, densely white-tomentose; pedicels 3.8–6.7 mm long, hairs white-appressed, sericeous or not. Perianth 3–4.2 mm long, cream-white, with white appressed-sericeous hairs, soon glabrescent. Pistil 8.2–12 mm long.

Fruit obliquely elliptic, 4.3–5.5 cm long, 3–3.5 cm wide, coarsely rugose, often also verrucose or pusticulate; beak tiny, with similar surface to rest of fruit; horns 0.5–1.8 mm long, often broken. Seed 27–37 mm long; wing decurrent fully down one side of seed-body only, dark brown.

Distribution and ecology

Confined to the Blue Mtns and the Wollondilly catchment, N.S.W., where it occurs on rocky sandstone outcrops in dry sclerophyll forest, at altitudes of 500–1100 m.

To plot an up to date distribution map based on herbarium collections for this species see Australia's Virtual Herbarium. Localities outside the native range may represent cultivated or naturalised records.

Flowering time

Flowers Sept.–Nov.

Derivation of name

Named after the collector of the type, E.F. (Ernie) Constable (1903-1986). Constable collected widely, mostly inNew South Wales , for the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney .



Part of Section Hakea of Bentham (as Euhakea) and characterised by a non-conical pollen presenter, leaves without obvious venation, perianths with or without hairs and fruits with or without horns. Barker et al. (1999) recognised a number of informal morphological groups within the section.

H. constablei was treated as part of the Sericea group, a predominantly eastern states group characterised by their simple terete leaves, few-flowered inflorescences, hairy pedicels and solitary, prominently woody fruits, these often markedly verrucose or pusticulate and usually with horns.

Other members of the group are H. actites, H. decurrens, H. gibbosa, H. kippistiana, H. leucoptera, H. lissosperma, H. macraeana, H. macrorrhyncha, H. ochroptera, H. sericea and H. tephrosperma, predominantly from the eastern states. 

Conservation status

This species was treated as 'Rare' in J.D.Briggs & J.H.Leigh, Rare or Threatened Australian Plants (1995).

Representative specimens

N.S.W.: Du Faurs Rocks, Blue Mtns Natl Park, W.R.Barker 3669 (AD); Kings Tableland (Blue Mtns), 26 Oct. 1962, C.Burgess s.n. (CANB); 1.5 km S of Bulli, 24 Aug. 1952, L.A.S.Johnson & T.Clifford s.n. (MEL); c. 4 km N of 'Ben Hur' property, Wanganderry Rd, off Wombeyan Caves Rd, M.Kennedy et al. 446 (NSW); Mount Wilson, Oct. 1899, J.H.Maiden s.n. (AD, B, BM, NSW).


Link to PlantNET treatment for NSW.


More photographs of this species can be seen on the Australian National Botanic Gardens site.

Further illustrations

J.W.Wrigley & M.Fagg, Banksias, Waratahs & Grevilleas 366 (1989)

I. Holliday, Hakeas. A Field and Garden Guide 46-47 (2005).