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Category: Plants

Kangaroo Apple Solanum aviculare There are a number of species that bear the common name Kangaroo Apple,  but Solanum aviculare is of particular interest horticulturally.

This  bush or small tree grows naturally on the edges of rainforest areas in  all the eastern states of Australia, including Tasmania and also in  South Australia. It grows to approximately 4m tall and 5m wide. The leaves of this plant are long and fairly slender and younger leaves  are often lobed.

The large violet flowers with their bright yellow  centres are very decorative and are borne in spring and summer. They are  followed by pendant fruits which are also very appealing. Similar in  shape to the tamarillo (Solanum betceum) which is in the same genus,  Kangaroo Apples turn from glossy green, to yellow to orange. The fruits  are edible, but one would be unlikely to seek them out. Having tasted  one I would not be particularly keen to line up for a second. Apart from being an attractive plant, this bush/tree is highly tolerant  of harsh conditions. It seems to flourish regardless of frost, drought, wind and soil compaction. As a result, it has become a favoured plant for revegetation work and for public open space plantings where maintenance is minimal. This is an excellent plant for xeriscaping because its beauty belies its toughness. 

COCKY APPLE Planchonia careya

Russell Cumming This small tree is one of the most common trees around Townsville and across large areas of northern Australia. It is the only member of its genus in Australia, although there are a few other Planchonia species through South-East Asia. It grows to about 6 metres, has light brown, slightly corky bark and fairly large broad leaves that turn bright orange before falling. The flowers have many stamens around 6cm long, which are fused together into a tube at their bases. The whole staminal bundle falls off as a unit. Flowers are white, grading into a beautiful shade of pink inside towards the base.

The individual flowers are superbly ornamental, but the flowering tree is seldom spectacular, as only a few flowers are usually produced at a time. Another reason why flowering trees are not readily appreciated is because the Cocky Apple flowers at night. The flowers can be seen opening up at dusk. They persist until the sun shines the following day, when the staminal bundles fall off. They seem to be pollinated mostly by bats. The fruit is edible, with a yellow flesh and the taste of a quince when ripe. It was a widely utilised food for Aborigines. The bark was extensively used as a fish poison. It was pounded and thrown into pools of water, killing fish which could then be eaten without ill-effect. The fish are killed by saponin in the bark. Saponin is also a cleansing chemical. It can be used as a soap substitute. Aborigines used a concoction made from the bark to clean wounds, such as burns and ulcers. Many graziers don't think much of Cocky Apple because it tends to reach pest proportions as a result of grazing or as regrowth after clearing. The trees can regenerate so thickly that they significantly reduce the quality of pasture and ease of mustering in many areas. It has thus gained itself a reputation as a native woody weed. Cocky Apples are related to Freshwater Mangroves (Barringtonia spp.). Together, they are in the family Lecythidaceae, which is closely related to the Myrtaceae (myrtle family). A fairly strong similarity can be seen in the structure of Cocky Apple flowers and fruits and those of the larger flowered species of Lilly Pilly (Syzygium), which is in the family Myrtaceae. (Reprinted from "The Native Gardener", Newsletter of SGAP Townsville Branch, August 1994.) Davidsonia puriens var Jarseysna Davidson's Plum. sour Plum, Ooray FAMILY: Davidsoniaceae Survival rating 2 Flower colour - pink-purple

APPEARANCE/DISTINGUISHING FEATURES:

Small slender rainforest tree 3m to 12m sometimes unbranched. Mature trees form a clump of stems 4-6m high each with a crown of striking and ornamental leaves. Fruits blue/black with some fine golden hairs (puriens means itching):plum like, with a soft juicy red/purple flesh. Flattened seeds with fibrous coats. Compound fernlike leaves. Large with 7-17 large strongly toothed leaflets. Leaf axis with a large prominently toothed. Leaves and branches hairy, may penetrate skin and cause irritation. Pink new growth. Small pink flowers in long string like panicles appear in late summer. Fruit forms in bunches in winter.

HABITAT/LOCATION/GROWING CONDITIONS: Warm sub-tropical rainforest, riverine -Brunswick and Tweed Valleys and QLD. Or - Cooktown to Townsville in wet to very wet rainforest - lowlands and uplands. Prefers full sun (??) but will tolerate low light, prefers moist soil but will tolerate a variety of growing conditions. Grows well indoors. Regular mulching, fertilising, and watering will maintain its attractive leaves and induce fruit in 3-4 years. High water requirement. Protect from wind

EDIBLE HARVEST: Fruit - early new year. Pick with gloves and place in mesh trauy and spray to remove hairs. Acid tasting fruit - jams, wine, stewing with sugar, jelly distinctive and enjoyable taste for people who like sharper taste in preserves. Can be dried and salted.

TRADITIONAL ABORIGINAL USE/OTHER USEFUL PARTS: fruit OTHER FUNCTIONS: ornamental, cabinet timber INTOLERANCES: doesn't like the cold (less than 10C) or extreme heat

PROPAGATION: Quick to germinate once flesh is removed from freshly collected seed, Seeds must be protected from mice. Cuttings in autumn. OTHER INFORMATION: When young makes an interesting container plant. Flowering: Jan - June Fruiting - Apr- Jul   From the Native Herb Group Dodonaea viscosa A review by Andrew Pengelly Several subspecies of D.viscosa exist - this review refers mainly to subsp. angustifolia Common Name: Hopbush Family: Sapindaceae Description: Erect evergreen shrubs to 5m high, may be monoecious or dioecious. Leaves linear-lanceolate, narrowly tapered at apex and base, entire margins, glabrous, petiolate, 6-13cm long, 5-10mm wide. Flowers appear in spring, on pedicels 3-9mm long arranged in terminal panicles. Sepals 3-4, petals absent. Capsules, winged with a glabrous surface, cover the plant during summer [Harden 1991]. Distribution Of the 68 species of Dodonaea, 61 are native to Australia. Dodonea viscosa is widespread in eastern Australia, and also found in parts of Asia, Africa and Central America. The subspecies angustifolia occurs in the Americas, the Asia- Pacific region and from tropical to southern Africa [Ghisalberti 1998] as well as eastern Australia where it grows chiefly on slopes and tablelands in dry sclerophyll forest or woodland.Part Used Leaves, aerial parts, roots Traditional Uses Hopbush was used by Aborigines in the form of a root decoction for cuts and open wounds. Leaves were chewed as a pain killer - they were often used for toothache. In north Queensland the chewed leaves and juice were applied to stings of stonefish and stingrays - they were bound to the wound for several days [Cribb and Cribb 1981]. Leaves were used to "smoke" newborn babies. Boiled root or juice of root were applied for headache [Issacs 1987].Early European settlers were attracted to the hop-like fruits and used them as an acceptable substitute for home brewing. In Peru leaves have been chewed as a substitute for coca leaves. In India a tincture was taken internally for gout, rheumatism and fevers. A poultice of leaves was applied to painful swellings and rheumatic joints - they reputedly retain heat for a long tome [Khory & Katrak 1981]. In Pakistan the plant was used for a range of disorders including gout, rheumatism, wounds, burns, snake bite, excema and skin ulcers [Ghisalberti 1998]. In South Africa D. viscosa leaves have been used as a topical antipruritic for skin rash, and taken internally as a febrifuge and for stomach disorders [Watt and Breyer-Brandwijik 1962]. In Africa generally, infusions were used to treat pulmonary diseases including pneumonia and tuberculosis as well as croup and diptheria [Ghisalberti 1998]. Leaf infusions and wood decoctions were used on Reunion Island as sudorifics, while in New Caledonia a leaf infusion was used as a tea substitute and as a febrifuge [Brooker, Cambie and Cooper 1987]. In Madagascar the leaves were used for fever, sore throat and haemorrhoids. In Mexico various preparations were used to treat inflammation, swellings and pain.  

Citrus Australasica COMMON NAMES: Finger Lime FAMILY: Rutaceae Citrus -

A small genus of about nine species, four of which occur in Australia and are endemic. They are closely related to citrus and are thorny shrubs or trees with acid, edible fruit.

APPEARANCE/DISTINGUISHING FEATURES: Shrub, 1-6m high; leaves, branchlets and thorns all green and hairless. Leaves narrow-elliptic to narrow rhombic, bluntly toothed, 11-4cm long. Often notched at the apex, with numerous oil glands, aromatic. Thorns numerous, stiff, up to 2cm long. Fruit green, finger shaped, up to 8cm long, resembling a lemon when cut. Small-scented orange-blossom flowers. Varies from dense to spindly. HABITAT LOCATION, GROWING CONDITIONS: Dry rainforest and sub-tropical rainforest. Common in regrowth north of Ballina to Mt Tamborine - found in riverine, littoral or seasonally dry rainforest. Slow growing, tolerates colder areas, hardy in sun or shade. Tolerates poorer soils provided they drain freely.

EDIBLE PARTS: Fruit, with a pleasantly acid, edible juice. Can be made into marmalade - this is ornamental as well as nice tasting, because the sliced rings of fruit look like miniature cart wheels. When this fruit is cut across the turgid pulp cells expand and separate pushing out of the 5 or 8 longitudinal segments as a cluster of small glistening 'peárls': also made into vinegar. Flower Feb - May. Fruit - May Sept (though mine began flowering in Oct!

TRADITIONAL ABORIGINAL USES: Fruit eaten fresh. OTHER FUNCTIONS: Living fence;

PROPAGATION: Both seeds and cuttings may take many months to develop roots. A shrub or bushy tree to about 6 m tall with very prickly branches. The narrow-oblong to obovate leaves, to 2.5 cm x 1 cm. are dark green with slightly scalloped margins. Small, white or pink, fragrant flowers about 1.2 cm across are followed by cylindrical, greenish yellow fruit about 10 cm long. Ripe May-Sept. Distribution: Endemic to south-eastern Qld and north eastern NSW. Notes and Cultivation: This species occurs in lowland and highland rainforests. Plants are almost impenetrably dense and thorny. They are of interest chiefly because of their unusual fruit which is tart but tasty when ripe and can be used for drinks and marmalade. Trees are slow growing and will grow in sunny or shady situations in well-drained soil. Once established plants are quite hardy. They respond to the use of fertilisers.

Propagation: From seed, by cuttings which are slow or by budding onto citrus rootstock.  Variation: The var. sanguinea from Mt Tamborine has reddish fruit with pink to bright-red pulp and pink flowers.  

Citrus australis Trop-Temp. Wild Lime. Round Lime Aug.-Nov. Description: A dense shrub or tree to about S m tall with prickly branches. The ovate to almost rhomboid leaves, to 5 cm x 1 cm, are dark green and leathery, the margins shortly scalloped. White to pinkish, fragrant flowers about 1cm across are followed by globular fruit 2-7 cm across, greenish-yellow when ripe. Ripe Aug-Nov. Distribution: Endemic to south-eastern Qld. Notes and Cultivation: A common species often found along stream banks. Plants are very bushy and prickly and are mainly of merest for their fruit which can be used to make drinks or marmalade. Plants are very slow growing and require shady or semi-shady conditions in moist, well drained soil. Propagation: From seed, by cuttings which are slow- or by budding onto citrus stock.  

Citrus garrawayi Trop.-S.Trop. Mount White Lime Aug-Dec. Description: A shrub or bushy tree to about 6m with very thorny branches. The dull-green, fairly thick-textured leaves, to 2.5 cm x 2.5 cm, are ovate to rhomboid, sometimes notched at the apex. White, fragrant flowers about 1 cm across are followed by ovoid to cylindrical, roughened, greenish-yellow, sticky fruit 5-8 cm long. Ripe Apr. Distribution: Endemic to Mt White on Cape York Peninsula. Notes and Cultivation: A rare species which has been introduced to cultivation. Plants have limited ornamental appeal and are mainly of interest because of the fruit which can be used to make drinks or marmalade. Plants are very slow' growing and need protection when small but they are hardy once established. They require free drainage and plenty of water during dry periods. Propagation: From seed, by cuttings which are slow or by budding onto citrus stock.

Citrus inodora Trop -S.Tro Russell River Lime Aug.-Sept. Description: A bushy shrub, to about 6 m tall, with thorny branches. The dark-green, leathery leaves to 20cm x 10cm are broad-lanceolate with shallowly scalloped margins. White to pink flowers about 1cm across are followed by ovoid, yellow fruit about 6 cm long. Ripe Jan. Distribution: Endemic to north-eastern Qld Notes and Cultivation: A fairly rare species from near coastal areas. Plants require shady conditions, plenty of water and organically rich, loamy soil although they will grow in poorer soils. They are very slow growing. The fruit can be used to make drinks or marmalade.

Propagation: From seed, by cuttings which are slow or by budding onto citrus stock.  

Quandong Santalum acuminatum  Family:Santalaceae

Distribution: Semi-arid areas of all mainland states. Common Name: Quandong; native peach 

Name: Santalum....from Greek, santalon, the Sandalwood tree acuminatum....from Latin, meaning slender pointed, a reference to the leaves.

Conservation Status: Not considered to be at risk in the wild.

General Description: Santalum is genus which extends beyond Australia. There are about 8 Australian species. The members of this genus are root parasites in that their roots attach themselves to the roots of other plants and gain part of their growth requirements from the host species. S.acuminatum is probably the best known Australian member of the genus as it is an important "bush food" in the drier areas of the country. The plant has attracted a degree of commercialisation and products derived from the fruits (jams, chutneys, etc) can now be purchased quite widely. It is a large shrub or small tree to about 3 metres in height with simple, greyish-green leaves. The small white flowers occur in clusters and are followed by 25 mm diameter fleshy fruits which turn bright red when ripe. The seed within the fruit is protected by a hard, woody shell. The seeds are spherical and around 10 mm in diameter.  Propagation and establishment of quandongs is a challenge, mainly due to the parasitic nature of the plant. 

Propagation by seed is the usual method but pretreatment is needed to enable moisture to reach the embryo. One method used is to saw a nick into the hard shell to expose the kernel and then to sow with the nick facing downwards. Another method is to extract the kernel by placing the seed in a vice and carefully cracking the hard coat. The seed needs to be sown with a host plant such as native perennial grass, legume, herb, shrub or prostrate species. Germination may take from 3-12 weeks. When planting out, the quandong and the host should both be planted. While quandongs are adapted to growth and survival in arid to semi arid conditions, young plants must not be allowed to dry out. Propagation by grafting onto seedling stock is becoming more common as particular forms are selected for their desirable fruiting characteristics.

Prostanthera rotundifolia   Family: Lamiaceae Lindl.  Habitat:  Description: Shrub, to 12 feet; leaves petioled, obovate to orbicular, to about 3/8 inches long and wide; flowers in short, loose or compact racemes on lateral branchlets, subtending leaves reduced, calyx to 1/8 inch long at flowering, 2-lipped, the lips about equal, entire, corolla to 1/2 inch long, lilac.  Southern and southeastern Australia, including Tasmania. 

Division: Magnoliophyta  Class: Magnoliopsida  SubClass: Asteridae  Order: Lamiales  SubOrder:  Family: Lamiaceae  Based upon: Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M. J. (1992 onwards). 'The Families of Flowering Plants: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval.' Version: 19th August 1999. http://biodiversity.uno.edu/delta/.  Internet Resources for this taxon: * Plants For A Future Website купить ламинатаптека онлайн киеврулонные шторы киев