Habit and habitat. Photo W.R.Barker

Leaves and inflorescences. Photo W.R.Barker

Inflorescences; note the very diagnostic lateral pollen presenter. Photo W.R.Barker

Inflorescences; note the hairs on the tepals and the very diagnostic lateral pollen presenter. Photo W.R.Barker

Leaves and fruits. Photo W.R.Barker


Hakea eriantha R.Br., Suppl. Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holl. 29 (1830)

T: prope fl. Hastings (Oxley's 2nd expedition), N.S.W., 1818, C.Fraser 40; syn: B, BM; prope fl. Hastings (Oxley's 2nd expedition), N.S.W., 1818, C.Fraser 47; syn: BM; prope fl. Hastings (Oxley's 2nd expedition), N.S.W., 1818, C.Fraser s.n.; syn: K p.p.

Hakea glaucina Gand., Bull. Soc. Bot. France 66: 230 (1919). T: near Buchan, Vic., Sept. 1910, J.W.Audas s.n.; holo: LY.

Hakea cymbaecarpa Gand., Bull. Soc. Bot. France 66: 230 (1919). T: near Harrietville, Vic., 31 May 1910, J.W.Audas s.n.; holo: LY.

Hakea eucalyptiformis Gand., Bull. Soc. Bot. France 66: 230 (1919). T: Sydney, N.S.W., June 1893, R.T.Baker s.n.; holo: LY.

Hakea recondita Gand., Bull. Soc. Bot. France 66: 230 (1919). T: Queensland, 1902, C.Walter s.n.; holo: LY.

Hakea betchei Gand., Bull. Soc. Bot. France 66: 230 (1919). T: Tenterfield, N.S.W., Oct. 1886, E.Betche s.n.; holo: LY; iso: NSW.


Small tree or dense shrub, 1–5 m tall, ?lignotuberous. Branchlets and young leaves appressed-pubescent, glabrescent. Leaves linear, narrowly elliptic or obovate, 8–18.5 cm long, 1–30 mm wide, attenuate, acute; mucro 0.5–1.5 mm long.

Inflorescence axillary with 6–10 flowers; involucre c. 2.5–3.5 mm long; pedicels 2.5–6 mm long, densely pubescent with hairs white, extending onto perianth. Perianth 3.5–6.5 mm long, white. Pistil 7–8.5 mm long; pollen presenter lateral below style apex, 1.2–1.5 mm long; gland 0.2 mm high.

Fruit obovate, somewhat sigmoidal, 1.9–3.2 cm long, 1.2–1.6 cm wide, smooth, brown-pusticulate; apiculum 3.5–4.5 mm long. Seed obliquely narrowly obovate, 19.5–20.5 mm long; wing apical only.

Distribution and ecology

Occurs along the east coast of Australia from Gladstone, Qld, to Gippsland, Vic., with an apparent disjunction in the Central Coast region of N.S.W. Found at altitudes up to 1300 m in wet or sclerophyll Eucalyptus woodland or forest, edges of beech forest and rainforest.

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 (July–) Aug.–Nov.

Derivation of name

From erion, Greek for woolly and anthos, Greek for flower, a reference to the hairy flowers of this species.



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. eriantha is somewhat difficult to place since it shares characteristics with a number of groups. The flat entire leaves, pubescent pedicel and perianth and the somewhat sigmoid fruits suggest a possible relationship with the Rostrata group or H. candolleana of the Incrassata group, but the uniquely shaped lateral pollen presenter is not found in either of these groups.


Easily confused with H. florulenta which has similarly shaped fruit. However H. eriantha has pubescent flowers while H. florulenta has glabrous flowers. Some variation in flower size is encountered, but this is apparently not linked with any other factor.

W.M.Molyneux has sent specimens from Yambulla Peak track on the upper reaches of the Genoa R., Vic., which have leaves that are consistently up to 30 mm wide. I [RMB] have seen no other specimens in which the leaves are consistently as wide as this, the usual width being between 10 and 20 mm, rather than the extremes given in the description. Lignotubers have been recorded on some collections e.g. Ballingall 2546, but Molyneux notes that neither the broad-leaved form from Yambulla Peak nor the more usual narrow-leaved form, which also occurs there, is lignotuberous. Molyneux has also documented the following differences between the two forms. The narrow-leaved form is a larger plant with a neat semi-weeping habit and brown plating bark, vigorous and free-fruiting in cultivation and is not predated by parrots. The broad-leaved form is an upright untidily open plant with smooth grey bark, setting few fruit in cultivation, and is predated by parrots.

The distinct gap between northern and southern populations of this species meant that it was investigated closely to see if the two had diverged. Unfortunately there was insufficient flowering material of the northern population (the southern population on the other hand was represented by copious flowering material) to detect whether there were any real differences. There is a tendency for the northern populations to have smaller flowers and it is possible that the flowering time is different, but better material and field observations are needed.

Representative specimens

Qld: Mt Byron, D'Aguilar Ra., 9 km WSW of Mt Mee, P.Young 786 & J.Elsol (BRI). N.S.W.: slopes of Mt Budawang, near Mongarlowe, L.G.Adams 1411 (CANB, G, NY); Parkers Gap, 8 km SE of Captains Flat on the Captains Flat–Majors Creek road, M.Evans 2643 (AD, BRI, CANB, MEL); Palerang R., c. 16 km SE of Hoskintown, R.Pullen 3875 (AD, BRI, CANB, MEL, NSW). Vic.: Snowy River Track, 3.2 km NNW of Armstrong Track junction, N.G.Walsh 271 (AD, MEL).


Link to PlantNET treatment for NSW.


Link to Maiden’s Forest Flora of New South Wales vol. 5, pl. 175 for an account and image of this species.


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

Further illustrations

I. Holliday, Hakeas. A Field and Garden Guide 78-9 (2005)