It looks a bit straggly and untidy at some times of the year. The red in the new growth looks attractive but when it starts flowering, it comes into its own.
This hakea has been blooming, with small white flowers reminiscent of grevillea. The fragrance is a mixture of sandalwood and incense, stronger in some plants than others. Flowering in the Reserve started in July this year and will generally finish around September.
The habit of this shrub is columnar in the Reserve – especially around the reservoir – growing to 5m. On the ridges, it tends to branch out a little more.
Its leaves are spiky to the touch – great, though, for small birds. In addition to the protection it represents, it is a butterfly attractant and also provides food for birds.
It relies on fire for regeneration. The lack of ecological fire for some time is reflected in the fact that most of these plants are of a similar height and development. There is some growth, however, in younger plants in small patches.
Sources and further information
Corangamite Region Guidelines (2006) Species notes: Hakea decurrens Bushy Needlewood http://www.florabank.org.au/files/documents/provenance/20070801-15.pdf
Yarra Ranges Shire Council (2010) Hakea decurrens: Yarra Ranges local plant directory. http://www.yarraranges.vic.gov.au/Residents/Yarra_Ranges_Plant_Directory/Middle_Storey/Shrubs_32-10m/Hakea_decurrens