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Woollsia pungens (Cav.) F.Muell.
Family Ericaceae
Subfamily Epacridoideae
Woollsia pungens (Cav.) F.Muell. APNI*

Description: Erect shrub usually 20–100 cm, sometimes to 200 cm high, hoary-pubescent.

Leaves horizontal to ± reflexed, ovate, 3.5–12 mm long, 1.5–6 mm wide, subulate, apex long-acuminate and with mucro 2–4 mm long, base rounded to cordate; petiole 0–1 mm.

Flowers 8–13 mm diam., white to dark pink, sweetly scented; bracts ovate to triangular, acute, ciliolate. Sepals 8–10 mm long. Corolla tube slender, 7–14 mm long; lobes spreading, rhombic, 4–5 mm long, finely mucronate. Anthers c. 2 mm long; filament attached ± at midpoint.

Fruit c. 2.5 mm diam.

Photo Tanja Lenz

Photo J. Plaza


Flowering: throughout year.

Distribution and occurrence: Grows in dry sclerophyll forest and heath on sandstone and coastal dunes; north from Pigeon House Mtn.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, SC, CT, ST
Other Australian states: Qld
AVH map***

Text by J. M. Powell, except for groups with contributors listed
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 3 (1992)


Life History
Vegetative spread No.

Longevity 10--20 years. Plants recorded in unburnt bush after 13 years (at Field of Mars).

Primary juvenile period 3--5 years (Benson 1985).

Flowers White--pink, sweetly scented, at any time of year, peak July--August. (Red form at northern coast of Jervis Bay only.)

Fruit/seed Capsule, 2.5 mm diam., with many small seeds, average seed weight 0.2--0.25 mg (J. Howell pers. comm.).

Dispersal, establishment and growth No special dispersal morphology (Westoby et al. 1990), probably wind-dispersed.

Fire response Killed and re-established from soil-stored seed (at Brisbane Water).

Habitat Sandstone plateaus, coastal dunes.

Altitude 0--1000 m                                      Annual rainfall 800--1600 mm

Typical local abundance Frequent--abundant.

Vegetation Heath e.g with Banksia serrata, Lambertia formosa, Xanthorrhoea resinifera, and dry eucalypt open-forest e.g. with Eucalyptus piperita, E. haemastoma, E. gummifera.

Substrate Fine silty sand--gravelly soil on sandstone and dunes, low nutrients, well-drained.

Exposure Full sun to light shade.

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.
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