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Swamp Banksia - Banksia robur - Care Guide

Banksia robur! More frequently referred to as Swamp Banksia, it grows in a wide range of coastal habitats across the east coast of Australia, ranging from Cooktown in north Queensland to the Illawarra region on the New South Wales south coast. You'll often find this shrub along the sand or peaty sand in coastal areas. It produces stunning large metallic green flowers that become cream-yellow and fade to golden-brown. Like other banksias, Swamp Banksia creates a great ecosystem for a wide variety of pollinators, including insects such as butterflies, moths, bees, wasps, and ants as well as many bird species.


You can expect this spectacular native to blossom with its large and eccentric flowers anywhere between Spring, Summer and Autumn, with plants from different areas seeming to flower at different times.


Quick Care

Botanical Name
Banksia robur
Size Plant: Seedling pot, min 20 cm tall
Frost Tolerance: Tolerates light frost
Drought Tolerance: Not Drought Tolerant
Soil Type:
Well-drained, Moist moderate drainage
Sun: Full-sun/Part-shade
Size:  2m shrub.
Pots: Does well in pots.
Feeding: Feed a high-quality native plant food every 6 months.



For best results, plant your Swamp Banksia in well-drained, moist soils with moderate drainage 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 2m. It's great when used as a hedging, screening or feature plant in your garden.


Frost tolerance

Swamp Banksia is only able to tolerate light frost. If you live in a cooler climate like Melbourne you'll want to make sure you offer your plant more protection from the elements.



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



Watering & Drought Tolerance 

Swamp Banksia can survive the western sun and be tolerant of part shade conditions but it prefers full sun positions with a constant source of moisture. This plant is not considered drought tolerant however is extremely adaptable to a variety of soil conditions ranging from sandy to clay. During wintertime, you can hold back on watering but as the temperature increases ensure that you're keeping it well watered. When too dry, it will wilt which is a good indication of when to water.


Fertilising your Swamp Banksia 

Like all banksias, Swamp Banksia is phosphorus sensitive, so a good native fertiliser is best when it comes to feeding. 


Growing Swamp Banksia in pots

Swamp Banksia 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.