Leptospermum benwellii A.R.Bean APNI*
Description: Spreading shrub to 3 m. high; bark smooth and deciduous throughout, orange or green coloured, peeling in ribbons. Branchlets with conspicuous stem flanges, pubescence sparse and mainly on margins of stem flanges.
Leaves alternate, subsessile, discolorous, narrowly elliptic, 18–25 x 2.7–5.0 mm, apex obtuse or mucronate, margins of young leaves with silky hairs, otherwise glabrous.
Inflorescence axillary, comprising 1–3 bracteolate monads, floral bracts shed before anthesis. Flowers with pedicels c. 1.2 mm long at anthesis; hypanthium glabrous, c. 3 mm long, sepals obtuse, 1.2–1.4 mm long, inner and outer surfaces glabrous, margins ciliate; petals white, obovate to orbicular, 2.6–2.7 mm long, oil glands present. Stamens 1.5–2 mm long, anthers versatile, cells parallel; stigma capitate; roof of ovary glabrous. Ovary three locular.
Fruit thin walled, campanulate to hemisherical, 2.5–3 mm long, 4–4.7 mm diameter, glabrous; sepals sparsely hairy, persistent. Seeds pale brown, obovoid to ellipsoidal, reticulate, 0.8–0.9 mm long.
Flowering: Flowering recorded for November, fruits from March to May.
Distribution and occurrence: Mt Munningyundo, Nymboidea National Park.
On steep slopes of acid volcanic rock, in open shrubland community. Associated species include Acacia falciformis, Xanthorrhoea malacophylla, Ozothamnus diosmifolius, Plectranthus graveolens and stunted Eucalyptus campanulata and E. notabilis.
NSW subdivisions: NC
Named for Andrew Benwell, a talented botanist and ecologist, who discovered this species during a survey of montane heathlands in northern NSW.
Text by P.D. Hind ex A.R. Bean in Telopea 10(4) December 2004
Taxon concept: A.R. Bean
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