Bottlebrush Callistemon ‘Harkness’

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In Don’s view, Callistemon ‘Harkness’ is the best of the Australian bottlebrushes.

Plant details

Common name: Bottlebrush

Botanic name: Callistemon ‘Harkness’ (used to be known and sold as ‘Gawler’ or ‘Gawler Hybrid’)

Description: Weeping, hybrid bottlebrush growing to about 6m x 6m (20 x 20′) under good conditions. Bright red flower spikes are produced abundantly in spring and early summer. The new growth is pink.

Best climate:

‘Harkness’ grows well in most areas of Australia, but needs a warm, sheltered position in very cold zones. It thrives in the alkaline soils of Adelaide, where it originated in 1937.

Best look:

street tree informal screen specimen tree native gardens good tree for small gardens

Good points:

beautiful red bottlebrush flowers attracts native nectar feeding birds sterile hybrid so does not produce woody seed capsules very hardy tolerates a wide range of soils and climates




This bottlebrush is very easy to grow. It does best in a full sun position, and tolerates both wet and dry soil conditions.

Getting started:

Callistemon ‘Harkness’ is readily available from nurseries and specialist native nurseries.