Callistemon comboynensis, Cliff Bottlebrush
Callistemon comboynensis is known as the Cliff Bottlebrush and grows into a medium shrub reaching a height of three metres. The leaves are narrow to broad-lanceolate, leathery with numerous oil dots. New growth is pinkish.
The flower spikes are red, five to nine centimetres long and between four to eight centimetres wide. The main flowering period is in summer and autumn with sporadic flowering at other times.
Callistemon comboynensis occurs in the north coastal ranges of New South Wales extending into Queensland and grows on cliff faces and rock crevices above 550 metres. The species name refers to the Comboyne area, west of Taree on the north coast of NSW.
Prune after flowering to maintain a dense and bushy plant.
Callistemon comboynensis is a handsome bottlebrush that could be grown in an informal hedge. The species could be mixed with other bottlebrushes particularly those with different flower colours to give added interest to the garden.
Propagate from seed or cuttings although cuttings are preferable as the species may hybridise with other Callistemons in the garden. This is something to keep in mind when propagating any Callistemons if you have a number of varieties growing.
Warren and Gloria Sheather