The Elegant Wilga: Geijera parviflora

This beautiful, weeping small tree is known as Wilga or Australian Willow and willowy it is, its long, narrow, pendulous leaves droop down creating a dense shade umbrella. Unfortunately this Australian native tree is used quite infrequently in gardens or urban horticulture, this is mainly due to availability issues but also as it is quite a slow growing species.

I have seen it only a handful of times planted in inner city Sydney as a street tree, I would dearly love to see it feature more often as a specimen tree in parks and gardens as its weeping habit is both striking and useful.

Geijera parviflora flowers from winter through to Summer with tiny perfumed flowers that are responsible for producing a delicious dark honey, its leaves can also be burnt to resell mosquitos.

As it originates from central NSW and QLD it is extremely drought hardy and makes a useful farm fodder tree.

However I mainly love it for the weeping branches and the way they move in the breeze, growing to only 8 or 9 metres tall and approximately 6 to 7 wide it will provide a nicely sized shade canopy for small to medium gardens. The thick crown also makes an excellent screening for privacy.

 

 

25 replies on “The Elegant Wilga: Geijera parviflora”

  1. gardener on

    This is starting to be used as a street tree in Adelaide, all the specimens I have seen are still quite small. I haven’t seen it available for sale though.

  2. Kathy Hoare on

    These lovely trees are flourishing along both sides of Holthouse St Wilmington SA. You can see them on Google earth but they were young trees then and now much bigger. I’ve tried to buy them but unavailable. I’ve got some seeds to germinate but I’m hoping they don’t die when I repot. Most people say it’s hard to get seeds to germinate but so far I have 6 from 10 seeds.

  3. Kathy on

    I bought so called Wilga seeds on eBay but after they germinated and grew, they are definitely not Wilga seeds. The seller keeps advertising them on eBay !!

    • Kath Gadd on

      Hi Kathy,

      Are they a registered nursery grower? if so you could notify the Nursery Association NGIA.
      Have you also formally let the grower know?

      Best Wishes,

      Kath

    • Sue on

      Hi Kathy, I also bought these seeds but don’t know what they should look like when they sprout. Do you have a photo of a freshly sprouting wilga tree please ?

  4. Kathy on

    Hi Kath and Sue,
    Sorry! I only just saw your posts! I informed the seller about the seeds but to no avail. I read that eBay isn’t too concerned with false advertising as they get revenue from it! The seeds they sold as Geijera Parviflora (Wilga) are actually Golden rain tree seeds. I don’t want to grow these trees as they have lots of seed pods. I bought genuine Wilga seeds from Gardeners and Graziers website but they won’t be ready for a couple weeks.

  5. doug on

    would love to know witch supplier they are as i have just orderd some seeds on ebay hopefully not the same one cheers
    doug

    • john byatt on

      i boughtseeds from Gardners and graziers, sprouting now google

    • Kath Gadd on

      Hi Emma,

      Those photos were taken on Lewisham Street Dulwich Hill,

      Best Wishes,

      Kath

  6. Wilga trees also grow happily inside eucalypts. I have many of these Trees in Trees on my property in far Nth West NSW. See http://www.scartrees.com.au – go to the Trees in Trees archive and you can see many of these weird 2 headed trees.

    • Sophia Weigang on

      I have seen one of the Wilgas inside an eucalyptus tree here also & it looks amazing! This year a lot of Wilgas have germinated & many in my garden & they would take up more space than there is… Maybe lots of rain is the germination secret… Offered to a friend, but now he wants something else. Anyone who wants seeds,could try Nindethana seeds. I live in North Western NSW too.

      • Carol J on

        I’m here looking [obviously] for wilga plants. My research led me to Gardeners and Graziers website where I’m now down on a waiting list for seedlings [exxy!]

        They have said that these respond to any rainfall and “the best fertiliser is water”

      • Carol J on

        Oh, I meant to ask, I’m wanting the plants for a garden in Deniliquin. Would you be willing/able to mail any of your small plants if I were to pay you?

        I get it if that’s not possible, but thanks in advance for your thoughts.

  7. faith on

    hi can one of you tell me how to germinate these seeds?

    my club is trying to figure it out so we can plant some.

    faith

  8. faith on

    hi can one of you tell me how to germinate these seeds?

    my club is trying to figure it out so we can plant some.

    faith

  9. Paul on

    Hi I just found this site while searching for Wilga seedlings. We have three very large Wilgas that were part of a row of other trees planted by my grandfather to commemorate the end of WW2. I collected over 1k of seed one year and tried all sorts of things to get them to germinate. Nothing worked .
    I had been buying seedlings from the NSW Forestry Nursery at Wagga 25 years ago but the old guy that grew them for the nursery (now I’m in the old guy category) died and seems to have taken some of the secrets with him.
    I was told at some stage to collect everything Under the tree (some soil and whatever the tree has dropped ) and distribute it into a large player box and keep it watered I never go around to trying this .
    I wish I had planted more around our place .I have about 20 growing in various locations. Like many native their rate of growth is extremely varied.I have some that are 5m and sone 2m but all health looking .

  10. Anne on

    After reading about them on a news site I sourced a couple of trees from Cool Country Natives in Canberra. I was warned they can be a bit frost tender for the first couple of years. Removed the tree guard after two years. Has put on a surprising amount of growth this year, perhaps 50-60cm?

  11. Victoria McCallum on

    Paul- I would love to try to germinate some seeds of this tree. Since I am trying to encourage local butterflies and plant in the actual tree in the bush. I can’t afford $45 .00 per plant. ( As seen on Graziers site.) I have recently had mixed joy with propagating seeds and this may be due to age or storage- or soil, too much/ uneven/too little watering . And so it goes . Never say die, except, obviously when the plant has, in fact, died. Lol.

    • Paul on

      Hi McAallum,I haven’t looked at this site for a while (actually lost the bookmark) .My son did a lot of research into how to grow wilgas .
      He is in IT and works for Westpac in Sydney but the farmer in him means his back yard at Woy Woy has chooks a vegetable garden and all sorts of plants in tubes (:
      This year I set up two large tarps under our old wila trees I have collected 2-3kg of seed which is 1000s of seeds as you would imagine I thought the seed drop would ease up after a month or so but I’m still getting 1 kg every 14 days or so This might be due to the wet and mild summer we have had.
      We have 40 growing in big tubes now .They are a very slow and feeble seedling .
      The outer coat contains a chemical inhibitor and has to be removed /cracked without damaging the small seed inside.The germination rate is only 10% of the successfully removed seeds .Many are empty.
      The best way to crack the outer shell is with a small micrometer the type machinists use This gives you controlled and gradual pressure .
      My son planted 3-4 seeds per 95x95mmx160mm tubes and some times got 2or3 seedling’s to come up sometimes none.
      They are a difficult tree to grow which makes you wonder how they regenerate in a natural environment.
      If you want some seed I’m happy to give you some to try
      0409822709 text me .Like many people I don’t answer calls from numbers that I don’t recognize.
      Paul

  12. Paul on

    Hi again McCallum -an update apparently we now have 120 seedings up and going with more to be planted The germination rate seems to be a constant 10%.
    I have been collecting seeds from some of the younger trees (25-30years old !) just for some variation .Out of these 20 only about 3 are producing seed and the seed is 3-4 times bigger than that of the mature trees which is odd They maybe a different type of wilga there are a few apparently.So it seems you might have to be patient when waiting to collect significant quantities of seed from your tree 60 -70 years I’d say 🙂

  13. Victoria McCallum on

    hey- Paul – I lost the plot- lost the links, and am getting over the flu ! But I’m back here and now, so I’ve found you! I totally understand re: not answering calls from randoms.Nor do I. But I’m going to text you in a minute or so . I’m so happy you took the time and trouble to answer my message. I haven’t ever used, even looked at this kind of string of conversations before. I am keen on trying to grow/plant a Wilga because there are local butterflies which lay eggs and the larvae eat this tree. So, it’s about the butterflies !

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