Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of various evergreen shrubs or trees of the genus Banksia of Australia and New Guinea, having dense spikes of usually yellowish or reddish flowers and fruits in conelike clusters.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A genus of shrubs or trees, for the most part of small size, of the natural order Proteaceæ, natives of western extra-tropical Australia and Tasmania, where with other shrubs of the same order they constitute most of the so-called “scrub.”

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • proper noun A plant belonging to the genus Banksia.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun any shrub or tree of the genus Banksia having alternate leathery leaves apetalous yellow flowers often in showy heads and conelike fruit with winged seeds

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[After Sir Joseph Banks.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From the genus name Banksia.

Examples

  • The banksia is a paltry tree, about the size of an apple-tree in an English or French orchard, perfectly useless as timber, but affording an inexhaustible supply of firewood.

    The Bushman — Life in a New Country

  • We had different kinds of encounters with four or five different types of treesome we gently brushed againstand then there was a more coercive meeting with a big banksia whose scaly, knobbly bark left a passage of black scales on the paper as if a huge reptile had passed over it.

    Wildwood

  • We had different kinds of encounters with four or five different types of treesome we gently brushed againstand then there was a more coercive meeting with a big banksia whose scaly, knobbly bark left a passage of black scales on the paper as if a huge reptile had passed over it.

    Wildwood

  • Comprises seven main vegetation types: closed forest including rain forest and tall eucalypt forest dominated by satinay and brushwood; blackbutt forest; scribbly gum and wallum banksia communities; communities of wet sites often dominated by Melaleuca spp.; coastal communities; Callitris forest and woodlands; and mangrove and salt marsh.

    Fraser Island, Australia

  • The blackened remains of a banksia tree begins to sprout at the base of the trunk.

    Tropic Temper

  • I am glad the banksia tree is sprouting and that you saw its new growth.

    Tropic Temper

  • The windows of his new room were fitted with green venetians; round the verandah-posts twined respectively a banksia and a Japanese honey-suckle, which further damped the glare; while on the patch of buffalo-grass in front stood a spreading fig-tree, that leafed well and threw a fine shade.

    Australia Felix

  • This peculiarity has been remarked of other plants, besides the species of banksia.

    Journals of Two Expeditions into the Interior of New South Wales

  • A species of banksia was seen to-day under the same meridian as on the Macquarie.

    Journals of Two Expeditions into the Interior of New South Wales

  • As the party drove on they stumbled upon a little native boy lying fast asleep beneath the shade of a magnificent banksia.

    In Search of the Castaways

Comments

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  • "She could make perfect pictures: twisted white eucalypts at a corner of a white road near Cooma, bristling khaki banksias in the foot-burning sand at Coolum, Gymea lilies in the scrub around Dural, like burning weapons on long shafts placed defiantly to warn intruders."

    —Peter Carey, Illywhacker, 527

    April 18, 2009