Common name: grey myrtle, ironwood
Backhousia myrtifolia Hook. & Harv. APNI*
Synonyms: Backhousia australis G.Benn. APNI*
Backhousia riparia Hook. APNI*
Description: Shrub or tree with finely flaky bark; young branchlets with spreading hairs.
Leaves ovate to elliptic, 3.5–7.5 cm long, 1–3.5 cm wide, apex acuminate, base rounded to attenuate, dark green, ± hairy but usually glabrescent with age; lateral veins conspicuous, intramarginal vein close to margin; oil glands large, distinct; petiole 3–6 mm long.
Inflorescences axillary, mostly dichasia with the central flower aborted; peduncle 20–35 mm long. Flowers mostly white. Hypanthium villous. Sepals 6–9 mm long, petaloid, yellowish. Petals 2–3 mm long. Stamens c. 6 mm long.
Fruit c. 6 mm long, barely larger than the flower, topped by the persistent, spreading sepals.
Distribution and occurrence: Widespread. Usually in warmer rainforest, often close to streams; north from Bega district.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, SC, NT, CT, ST, CWS
Other Australian states: Qld
Text by Peter G. Wilson
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 2 (1991)
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.