Common name: Shining copper cups


Pileanthus rubronitidus in a garden bed in Kings Park. Photo: G. Brand.View image slideshow

Origin of Scientific Name

Pileanthus – (Greek) pilos – a cap, and anthos – a flower; referring to the bracteoles that cover the flower buds.

rubronitidus – (Latin) ruber – red, and nitidus – shining; referring to the distinctive colour of the flowers.


Pileanthus rubronitidus is a Western Australian native that occurs naturally in a restricted area between Kalbarri and Northampton. Occurring in sandy soils in heath or Banksia sceptrum shrubland, this small upright shrub grows to approximately 1 metre high with narrow leaves that produce essential oils.

It’s a fairly unassuming plant until masses of large stunning red-orange flowers appear on the ends of its branches between late September and early November. Seven other species of Pileanthus, known collectively as copper cups, all produce similarly beautiful flowers and occur only in Western Australia.

Horticultural tips

  • Not common in cultivation, but successful in a Mediterranean-type climate.
  • Plant in well-drained soil in full sun.
  • Best planted in companion with other more densely formed plant species.
  • Tip prune during establishment and prune after flowering for improved form and floral display.

For more horticultural tips view our Plant Notes section.

View in Kings Park

Visit Kings Park and Botanic Garden to see Pileanthus rubronitidus near the Floral Clock.

Want more information?

Refer to the profile for this plant on the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions' FloraBase online herbarium.

Shining copper cups in bloom. Photo: D. Blumer. Pileanthus rubronitidus, Shining copper cups. Photo: G. Brand.

Kings Park access disruption

Part of the Western Path between Monash Avenue and Aberdare Road will be closed from Monday, 8 February 2021 due to construction works on The Kids’ Bridge, pedestrian detours will be in place.

DNA Tower closure

The DNA Tower in Kings Park will be closed from Monday, 8 February 2021 until mid-April 2021 due to maintenance.

Concert traffic interruptions

Road and carpark closures will occur in Kings Park and Botanic Garden in February-March 2021 due to concert events.

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Farewell and thank you Grady and Lesley

The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority (BGPA) would like to extend a sincere thank you and farewell to two of our longest serving staff members, Lesley Hammersley and Grady Brand who will retire from the Authority in December 2020.

Noongar Boodja Six Seasons is back!

Kings Park Education is excited to open bookings for our 2021 program of Noongar Boodja Six Seasons festivals, a celebration of Aboriginal culture, proudly presented by Fugro.

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