Habit. Photo Ivan Holliday.

Habit, leaves and flowers, taken N of Alice Springs. Photo Ivan Holliday .

Leaves, buds and flower. Photo Ivan Holliday.


Hakea macrocarpa A.Cunn. ex R.Br., Suppl. Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holl. 30 (1830)

T: Cygnet Bay, Point Cunningham, NW Australia [W.A.], 4th Voy., 9 July 1822, A.Cunningham 83; syn: BM, K.

Grevillea alphonsiana F.Muell., Hooker's J. Bot. Kew Gard. Misc. 9: 22 (1857). T: Sturts Ck, March 1856, F.Mueller s.n.; syn: MEL 1537914, K; Australia subcentralis, s.d., Dr M[ueller] s.n.; syn: G-DC.

Hakea morrisoniana W.Fitzg., J. & Proc. Roy. Soc. W. Australia 3: 134 (1918). T: Hann River near junction of MacNamara Creek, W.A., June 1905, W.V.Fitzgerald 1153; syn: NSW, PERTH.


Tree or shrub, 1–6 m high, resprouting from base; bark brown-black, furrowed. Branchlets densely appressed- to woolly-tomentose, finally glabrescent. Leaves: petiole c. 1–5 mm long; lamina narrowly linear, flat to concave above, straight to variously curved, thick, 5–35 cm long, 3–15 mm wide, narrowly attenuate, acute to obtuse, densely appressed-tomentose, glabrescent.

Inflorescence with c. 40–200 flowers; rachis (30–) 60–200 mm long, densely appressed to woolly cream- or white-tomentose, rarely glandular-pubescent throughout, with similar indumentum on pedicels and perianth. Flowers cream to green-yellow; pedicels 4–10 mm long. Perianth 7–9 mm long. Pistil 18–26 (–30) mm long; style straight or curved; pollen presenter oblique.

Fruit 2.2–4 cm long; valves 1.2–1.7 cm wide; beak curved. Seed occupying c. half valve, 1.8–3.7 cm long, 0.9–1.4 cm wide; wing c. 1/2–2/3 down one side only.

Distribution and ecology

Occurs in semi-arid to arid northern W.A. and N.T. and western Qld; found in red sandplain, often with hummock grasses, sometimes also in woodland, less commonly in heavier soil.

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 late May–Aug. (–Oct. in the Kimberley).

Derivation of name

From macro-, Greek for long and carpa, Greek for fruit.



Part of the group referred to as the Corkwoods (Grevilleoides p.p. of Bentham, Lorea group of Barker et al. 1999) because the bark of these plants is usually corky. Pollen presenters are usually not conical (except in H. ednieana ), leaf venation is obscure, inflorescences are long and floriferous and mostly pendent and many fruits are formed. These fruits are not particularly woody, are usually obscurely horned, not usually retained for a long time on the plant and the seed occupies most of the valve face.

Members of this group include H. chordophylla, H. divaricata, H. ednieana, H. eyreana, H. fraseri, H. ivoryi, H. lorea, H. macrocarpa and H. pulvinifera . They tend to occur in drier areas of Australia.


Distinctive within the group for its flat leaves. Occasional very narrow-leaved specimens occur, which were given the name H. morrisoniana. There is no basis for considering these specimens as a separate taxon.

Developing fruits are glabrous after anthesis but, by the time they are over about 1 cm long, are often densely appressed-tomentose with apparently simple eglandular hairs. Rarely some specimens (e.g. Blake 16019 and Guppy Q6) have the rachis, pedicels and outside of the perianth densely glandular-pubescent, the hairs simple and sometimes mixed with 2-armed appressed eglandular hairs. The developing ovaries may also be glandular-pubescent.

Representative specimens

W.A.: Fitzroy Crossing, Mrs Guppy Q6 (PERTH). N.T.: near (S of) Newcastle Waters, S.T.Blake 16019 (BRI); 69 km SW of Barrow Creek township, M.Lazarides 5803 (AD, BRI, DNA, NSW). Qld: 29 km E of Urandangie, L.Pedley 2024 (BRI).


Link to FloraBase treatment of this species.

Further illustrations

W.R.Elliot & D.L.Jones, Encycl. Austral. Pl. 5: 215 (1990).

I. Holliday, Hakeas. A Field and Garden Guide 118-19 (2005)

J.A..Young, Hakeas of Western Australia. A Field and Identification Guide 68 (2006)