I’ve only ever worn plain white tee-shirts, but I’m tempted to buy this one with a ‘hairpin’ banksia on it. The correct name is Banksia spinulosa. ‘Spinulosa’ refers to the spiny leaf tips, which are thankfully fairly soft, What a great plant; able to cope with heavy frost and snow. Where I live in the upper Blue Mountains (Blackheath) it flowers all through autumn and winter and into spring, providing nectar for so many birds.

Great tee-shirt featuring the hairpin banksia.

Oddly enough the plant used to be called native honeysuckle.

The hairpin banksia was once called honeysuckle.
Source – Melbourne Herald June 9 1954

If a bossy wattlebird wants to feed on the blooms, nobody else gets a look in. Oh, and I’ve just noticed that the colour matches its beady eye. 😍

Wattlebird feeding on the hairpin banksia.

The crimson rosellas love them too.

Crimson rosella in Banksia spinulosa or Hairpin Banksia.
Spinulosa banksia blooms are full of nectar

And look, a tiny silvereye takes his turn. He is hard to spot among the foliage.


I almost forgot the Eastern Spinebill. He can reach nectar so easily with that amazing beak.

This lovely painting of Banksia is by Julie Hocking. I’m not sure that is the Hairpin variety, but the flowers are the same

Painting of the hairpin banksia.
BANKSIA IN WHTE VASE 2021 (Brickworks Gallery)

And here is a much earlier one (1935) by the wonderful Grace Crossington Smith.

I cut some flowers for the house myself this week.

It was so tempting to pick just a few more, but I didn’t want to deprive the birds of their honey. A pot of them makes a really nice winter table decoration.

Apologies re the poor lighting in our dining area.

A winter dining table with Banksia spinulosa.

Here is a Banksia spinulosa growing outside my upstairs study window. There are lily-of-the-valley ‘pips’ in the white pot. When they flower come October the banksia will still be going strong.

'Hairpin' banksia

Thanks from myself and the birds of the Blue Mountains for the pleasure you give us all beautiful Hairpin Banksia. πŸ’›πŸ’š

The 'Hairpin' Banksia


  1. One of the fascinating discoveries on my first visit to Australia, was the Banksia

    • Pauline

      Yes, there are so many varieties. I love them all.

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