The Bottle Brush Tree is a lovely Ornamental tree native to NE Australia and Introduced to India in the 19th Century. As of date you can see the tree in practically every  Indian City.

A tall handsome evergreen tree it has long trailing branches laden with woody fruits and Bright Scarlet flowers resembling Bottle Brushes.

Weeping Bottle Brush ( English) , Cheel ( Hindi)  or  Callistemon viminalis ( Scientific name) 

It belongs to the  Eucalyptus family Myrtaceae.

The Flowing or cascading branches have given it the name Weeping Bottle Brush.

flowing adverse
Flowing Tresses

The scientific name of the Bottle Bush has seen a major tussle over the years and has only in the last five years been renamed Melaleuca viminalis. The Genus has been changed from the earlier and still commonly used Callistemon viminalis

Am clueless how all this works and who finally decides on these very difficult to remember names.

However I do try to bring to you the Family name as that reveals certain common characteristics.

Do break one of these lovely lance like leaves and smell them, the aroma will definitely remind you of  Eucalyptus. No surprises as it belongs to the same family.

Even the cupped fruits bear a distinct resemblance.

flower and leaves
Red Brushes

The Bright Scarlet flowers which adorn the tree are in fact brightly coloured filaments which carry the pollen on their tips.

The Bottle Brush is a collective groups of flowers with the filaments playing Eye candy for the pollinators.

bottle brush
Gorgeous Flowers

These lovely wooden bells or cups are the fruits and each contains the seeds of the Weeping Bottle Brush.

A remarkable feature of the beautiful Ornamental Bottle Brush  Tree is  that the Wooden Fruits or Wooden Cups can remain on the tree for SEVERAL YEARS.


In the past few decades there has been an intense debate on the Introduction of Trees from other countries.

The Eucalyptus Trees( also native to Australia) have been at the center of the storm as they have allegedly been the cause of a reduction in the Water Tables in several areas in India.

The pictures above were taken in the Enchanting Sunder Nursery at New Delhi  which has been recreated as an Indo- Persian Garden from the 16th Century.

Published by

mukul chand

51 year old entrepreneur who has traveled extensively around the world for work and pleasure , is based in New Delhi, India. A passionate traveler born with a love for flora and fauna, is an active naturalist and amateur photographer. Here he shares his unique insight into Incredible India revealing its mysterious and exotic treasures. Writing from his heart he shares his experiences as he crisscrosses this vast and amazing land.

29 thoughts on “BOTTLE BRUSH”

  1. They are so beautiful, especially the colours, green and red are amazing. In here we have seen them for a few years in the gardens. They are so popular. Thank you, have a nice day (it’s snowing in here again 🙂 ) Love, nia

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh wow, do check if the filaments are fused. As there are many species in this family. Maybe you have two species and both are not the same. The fruits need a close look also, do they remain for several years or do they fall off.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Now that you say it. One looks great, tall, and vigorous. The other one looks like a cypress. I will look closer, maybe I have two different species 🙂 Thank you 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Don´t worry, I´m myopic too and I didn´t realize they´re different all these years 😀 I will take detailed pictures of each part and will compare both plants 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, Jessica and I have two varieties in our front garden weeping and otherwise, we had to wait about 2 years for the bush to come into flower. There are arguments here against introducing non Natives, especially European Flora.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comments. I look forward to views like yours, it expands the Horizon The Bottle Brush has many species and you have to the size of tree, bark flowers /leaves and fruits to distinguish between them.Non natives do bring their own set of woes no doubt.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s