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Doryanthes palmeri

In New South Wales it is listed as a Vulnerable species where it is threatened in the wild by weed invasion, frequent fires and illegal seed harvesting.

Roasted Doryanthes flower spikes were used as a food source for Indigenous Australians and the roots were mashed into a pulp and made into cakes.

If you have a large garden, this plant will add structure and colour - the foliage in particular being extremely architectural when planted singly. In cultivation it is an adaptable plant which prefers well drained soils.

Common namegiant spear lily
Scientific nameDoryanthes palmeri W. Hill ex Benth.

Genus: From Greek, doratos, spear; and anthos, flower.

Species: After Sir Arthur Hunter Palmer (1819 - 1898), pastoralist and Queensland politician.

DistributionOccurs in south-east Queensland and far north-east New South Wales.
Native habitatOn exposed rocky outcrops on infertile soils or on bare rock.
DescriptionClumping lily to 3 m x 3 m with massive red arching flower spikes.
Flowering/fruitingFlowers in spring and summer.
Location in gardenYou can have a closer look at this giant in Bed 3 in the Connections Garden and in the Lakeside beds.
Garden ExplorerView Doryanthes palmeri on Garden Explorer