Bottle Brush Tree
Bottle Brush Spiritual Meaning
Abundance, laughter, joy, the essence of the kookaburra. The flowers are used to celebrate birth and all that is new and sustaining. The seed pods make excellent pillow filling allowing the head to breathe.
A lot of our streets and backyards in Australia have these plants and it seems it has become so common place that we look, but do not always see the natural wonders that surround us.
One of Australia’s most iconic natural symbols would have to be the Bottle brush or Callistemon. This natural treasure’s name is of Greek origins callis meaning beauty and stemon meaning stamen which is in reference to its thousands of beautiful stamen flowers creating each individual flower.
Bottle Brush Flower
The bottle brush tree is widely used as a landscaping plant due mostly to its adaptability, hardiness and the stunning flowers are a great attraction for native nectar feeding wild life including insects, butterflies and birds.
These vibrant flowers are of cylindrical shape, the color being produced by the filaments, at the end of these is where the pollen is formed adding to the natural beauty of the flower . The color of the flower is a result of the species, ranging from red, yellow, white, pink or even purple. Each flower produces small woody fruits that contain hundreds of tiny seeds. Forming in clusters along the stem these seeds often lay dormant until the time is right or in the case of a fire, where like a lot of its relatives is not only fire tolerant but drop seeds after a fire to help the bush re-germinate.
This extremely hardy plant will grow in most areas of Australia its preferable natural homes are creek beds or areas prone to flood although once established are drought, fire and salt tolerant.
Bottle Brush Growth Rate
The Australian native shrub the bottle brush tree ranges in size from a 0.5 meter woody shrubs to 4 meter woody trees. Belonging to the Callistemon genus in the Myrtaceae family that is closely related to the Melaleuca tree. The callistemon genus has approximately 40 species within it.
The leaves of this evergreen plant are often dark green and pointed. With the new growth in some species being colored and producing fine hairs. Some of the adult leaves develop sharp-pointed tips. The bottle brush tree bark is grey in color with interlacing ridges.
Bottle Brush Health Benefits
Indigenous people of Australia used the bottle brush flowers as a natural energy drink, ingeniously taking full advantage of their natural surroundings. Soaking the flowers in water essentially drinking all the natural goodness. The same method was used for the Banksia flowers. Bottle brush essential oil is used to harmonize a room or house bringing tranquil healing vibrations.
When using this plant for landscaping its best to remember, grow in full sun to produce the most spectacular array of flowers. Very easy to grow from cuttings. Growing from seeds is achievable although a little more patience is required. © Ange Marxsen