The nectar from Banksia was once used as a food by aboriginal people. It is known as the Australian Honeysuckle.
Banksias were originally named after the botanist Sir Joseph Banks who sailed with Captain Cook on his first great voyage and introduced many Australian plants to Europe.
Out of 76 species of Banksia all but one are endemic to Australia. South-western Australia has the greatest diversity with around 60 species recorded.
The bizarre cone-shaped flower heads are made up of hundreds of individual flowers, which range through the spectrum of reds to yellows.