Leaves more typical of the intergrade between H. horrida and H. ilicifolia . Photo  G.Watton

Leaves more typical of the intergrade between H. horrida and H. ilicifolia . Photo  I.Holliday

Leaves are correct for H. ilicifolia but this may also be H. florida . Photo  W.R.Barker

H. intermedia (synonym) from Hooker's Icones Plantarum t. 445 (1842).


Hakea ilicifolia R.Br., Trans. Linn. Soc. London 10: 184 (1810)

T: South Coast, Bay I, [Lucky Bay, Western Australia], Jan. 1802, R.Brown Iter Austral. 21; syn: B, BM, K p.p.

Hakea ilicifolia var. minor Meisn., in A.L.P.P. de Candolle, Prodr. 14: 406 (1856). T: without locality, Western Australia, without date, J.Drummond 299; syn: BM, CGE, G, TCD; Cape Riche, Western Australia, 19 Nov. 1840, L.Preiss 561; syn: G-DC (microfiche seen), NY.

An image of the NY type specimen of Preiss 561 can be seen on the New York Botanical Garden site.

Hakea ilicifolia var. major Meisn., in A.L.P.P. de Candolle, Prodr. 14: 406 (1856). T: without locality, Western Australia, without date, J.Drummond 173; ?syn: K, not annotated.

Hakea intermedia Hook., Icon. Pl. 5: t. 445 (1842). T: King George Sound, [Western Australia], without date, W.Baxter s.n.; holo: not located. Illustration reproduced here.


Shrub, 1–3 m tall; branching 'corymbose', with foliage most dense at apex, ?lignotuberous. Branchlets ferruginous to white woolly-tomentose. Leaves subpetiolate, rigid, flat, elliptic, 1.5–5 cm long, 5–20 mm wide, attenuate or cuneate, coarsely dentate with teeth 1–2.5 mm long, acute, tomentose, ferruginous, glabrescent; mucro 1–2.5 mm long.

Inflorescence with c. 16 flowers; involucre 6 mm long; bracts appressed-pubescent in upper half; rachis 2.5–4 mm long, villous; pedicels 3.5–6.5 mm long. Perianth 3–3.5 mm long, cream or yellow. Pistil 7.5–8.5 mm long; ovary glandular-pubescent; gland absent.

Fruit obliquely ovate, 2–2.2 cm long, 1.5–1.6 cm wide, black-pusticulate, pubescent; horns 3.5–4.5 mm long. Seed obliquely obovate, 11–12 mm long; wing partly down one side of seed body only.

Distribution and ecology

Occurs in south-western Western Australia from Cape Riche to north-east of Ravensthorpe and inland to near Lake Grace.

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 Aug.–Oct.

Derivation of name

From ilex, a genus of holly and folius, Latin for leaf, a reference to the holly-like shape of the leaf of this species.



Previously treated as Series Enerves of Sect. Conogynoides of Bentham. Sect. Conogynoides is characterised by a conical pollen presenter, veined leaves, glabrous perianth and fruits lacking horns. Series Enerves members lack an obvious venation in the leaves.


Because of the lack of leaf venation, but also because the fruits have very distinctive horns and the conical pollen presenter is somewhat obliquely placed, this group was removed from Sect. Conogynoides by Barker et al. (1999) and treated as the informal Varia group. Probably close to Bentham's Section Manglesiodes (the Lissocarpha group of Barker et al., 1999) but differing by the curved buds of the Varia group as opposed to the straight buds of the Lissocarpha group.


Members of the group are H. florida, H. horrida, H. ilicifolia, H. lasiocarpha, H. oleifolia, H. tuberculata and H. varia and the more recently described, H. chromatropa . All are from SW WA.


The leaves of H. florida and H. ilicifolia can be indistinguishable in the areas where the two species overlap, at the eastern end of the H. florida range. While those of H. ilicifolia tend to be thicker and much more rigid and the teeth are usually somewhat longer, it is usually necessary to confirm the differences by the presence (H. ilicifolia) or absence (H. florida ) of glandular hairs on the ovary or by the differences in the size of the fruit. Hakea florida flowers later than H. ilicifolia in November to January, rarely as late as April.

Hakea ilicifolia appears to intergrade into H. horrida with the obovate and prickly toothed leaves of the Cape Riche area gradually converting to the pinnatisect leaves of H. horrida in the Lake King area. Specimens from the Pingrup, Ongerup and Fitzgerald R. area all exhibit leaves of an intermediate type, eg. H.Demarz 482 (PERTH) and W.E.Blackall 3089 (PERTH). Field studies may well show that it would be better to treat these species at an infraspecific level.

Groom & Lamont (1996) record H. ilicifolia as suckering from the roots while H. horrida is recorded as a nonsprouter (i.e. fire-killed).

Representative specimens

Western Australia: Cape Riche, C.A.Gardner 2160 (PERTH); near Twertup Ck, Fitzgerald River National Park, A.S.George 10932 (PERTH).


Link to FloraBase treatment of this species for WA.

Further illustrations

J.A..Young, Hakeas of Western Australia. A Field and Identification Guide 34 (2006)