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Bottlebrush - Callistemon - Care Guide

Callistemon! Universally recognised as Bottlebrush, it grows in a wide range of habitats scattered across Australia. They are mostly found in the more temperate regions of Australia, especially along the east coast however two species are found in Tasmania and several others in the southwest of Western Australia. It produces stunning bright red bottle-shaped flowers. These flowers create a great ecosystem for a wide variety of pollinators, including insects as well as many bird species.


You can expect this spectacular native to blossom with its bright red flowers from mid-winter right through until mid-summer.


Quick Care

Botanical Name
Size Plant: Seedling pot, min 20 cm tall
Frost Tolerance: Frost Tolerant.
Drought Tolerance: Drought Tolerant.
Soil Type:
Sun: Full-sun/Part-shade
Size:  8m shrub.
Pots: Does well in pots.
Feeding: Feed a high-quality native plant food every 6 months.



For best results, plant your Bottlebrush in well-drained soils and place your plant in full sun. You can also grow in part shade for reasonable results. This dense, flowering shrub can attain a height of up to 8m. It's great when used as a hedging, screening or feature plant in your garden.


Frost tolerance

Swamp Banksia is able to tolerate frost. However, If you live in a cooler climate like Melbourne you'll want to make sure you offer your plant more protection from the elements in the colder months during its early growth stages.



This lovely species does well in full sun but it can thrive in part sun but with lower flowering amounts.



Watering & Drought Tolerance 

Callistemons are quite tough plants once established and are drought tolerant, able to withstand temperature extremes! Once established, Callistemons dislike being overwatered. So you'll want to water only when the soil is dry at approximately 1cm below the surface. During wintertime, you can hold back on watering.


Fertilising your Bottlebrush

As a low maintenance species, Bottlebrush tree care tends to be minimal. We recommend applying a complete fertiliser designed for Australian natives in the spring months. 


Growing Bottlebrush in pots

Bottlebrush does well in pots. Be sure to keep it in a sunny spot on a balcony or backyard. Use a high-quality potting mix without fillers or additives and add your own plant food for the highest success.