Plants of
South Australia
Grevillea quinquenervis
Five-veined Grevillea
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Critically endangered
Data deficient
Coober Pedy
Mount Gambier
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 2


Grevillea after Charles Francis Greville (1749-1809), a co-founder of the Royal Horticultural Society. Quinquenervis from the Latin 'quinque' meaning five and 'nervus' meaning a nerve or vein, referring to the often 5-veined leaves.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and found only on the western parts of Kangaroo Island, growing on lateritic and grey sandy soils in sclerophyllous shrubland and open woodland. Native. Common in South Australia.
Herbarium region: Kangaroo Island
NRM region: Kangaroo Island
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Bushy shrub 1 m high, branchlets with woolly hairs. Leaves ascending, rigid, shortly petiolate, narrow-oblong to obovate, to 5.5 cm long and 8 mm wide, the upper side appressed-pubescent, quickly glabrescent, with a prominent midrib and 2 or 3 parallel veins inside each margin, the lower side appressed-tomentose between the prominent midrib and the recurved margins below, the apex obtuse to truncate. Inflorescence a small cluster of 4-8 pink flowers on short axillary shoots. Flowering between June and October. Fruits are dark brown to black capsule to 13 mm long, smooth with a usually persistent terminal curved style. Seeds are narrow-oblong, with a longitudinally groove on one side and a blunt aril-like body at one end. Seed embryo type is linear fully developed.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between December and January. Collect mature capsules, those that are turning brown but have not split, by hands or place small breathable bags over immature capsules or branchlets to collect maturing seed. Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for a weeks or two for them to split naturally. Use a sieve to separate the unwanted material. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. This species has morphophysiological dormancy and can be difficult to germinate.

Fire response

Obligate re-seeder, numerous seedlings observed.

Longevity: 10–15 years.

Time to flowering: 3–4 years

Recovery work

In 2020 populations of this species were assessed in the first year post-fire. A total of 210 seeds were collected from of an unburnt population. Further populations will be assessed and seeds collected on Kangaroo Island in 2021–2022. Germination screening testing the response to fire cues will be undertaken in 2021. This project was supported by the Emergency Seed Collecting Fund, a grant awarded to the Australian Seed Bank Partnership by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew on behalf of the UK Government..