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  ― 187 ―

CCLXV. E. Laseroni R. T. Baker.

In Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W., xxvii, 585 (1912), with Plate LXIII.

FOLLOWING is the original description:—

Arbuscula usque ad 35' alta. Cortex fibrosus, tam in ramis quam in trunco persistens, viridis, et hinc “Bastard Stringybark.” Folia 3–5? longa, fere 1–2? lata, lanceolata, ovata, alternata subcoriacea, concoloria; venis patentibus, peripherica a margine remota, venulis obliquatis. Pedunculi ¼? longi, axillares, solitarii, 10–15 flori. Fructus ¼? longi, pilulares; margine convexo, valvis non exsertis. …

It is a small tree, 35 feet high and 1 foot in diameter, as far as seen. The fibrous bark covers the trunk, and decorticates in long strips from the main branches, which are otherwise smooth, but darker than in E. stellulata. The timber is yellowish-brown, and tough to cut, but brittle. … From the specimens seen, this is not a good timber. It is fairly close-grained, of a pale colour, but the presence of gum veins will militate against its general utilisation by the commercial world.

A small tree under 40 feet high, and about 1 foot in diameter, with a fibrous but hard stringy bark, in the general acceptation of the letter term.

Abnormal (juvenile) leaves ovate, lanceolate, slightly falcate in some instances, petiolate, attenuate, varying in size up to 5 inches long, and up to 2 inches broad. Normal leaves lanceolate, alternate, subcoriaceous, average leaves under 4 inches long and 1 inch wide, occasionally shining. Venation distinctly marked, the basal lateral veins sometimes running the whole length of the leaf, and well removed from the edge; the other lateral veins not so oblique, more transverse.

Buds in clusters, on axillary peduncles about ¼ inch long. Operculum sharply conical.

Fruits hemispherical, capitular, rim domed, valves scarcely or not exserted, ¼ inch in diameter, pedicel varying in length up to 2 lines long.

Range.

“This tree, so far, is known only from the Black Mountain district, where Mr. Laseron obtained material in July, 1907. He states in his field-notes that it is regarded locally as a cross between “Silvertop Stringybark,” E. lœvopinea, and “Sally,” E. stellulata. A few trees are to be found on a rough rocky basalt hillock, about half a mile south of Black Mountain railway station.” (Original description.)

The above locality is in the higher parts of New England, New South Wales. The railway station in question is 4,330 feet above sea-level, and between Armidale and Glen Innes. It is 380 miles north of Sydney.

“In 1903 I received from Mr. R. H. Cambage `a form of E. eugenioides Sieb.' from between Tingha and Guyra, and in the following year visited the tree. I labelled it on 1st April, 1905, and again on 30th March, 1906, `probably a eugenioides-stellulata hybrid,' and I put it with my collection of reputed hybrids to be dealt with collectively in my `Critical Revision.'

“During the present year, Mr. R. T. Baker has described it as a new species (E. Laseroni), and says it bears the local reputation of being a cross between E. lœvopinea and stellulata.” (Journ. Roy. Soc. N.S.W., xlvii, 229, 1913.)




  ― 188 ―

I wrote as follows in Part VIII, p. 237, of the present work concerning the above and other specimens:—

Near cemetery, Tingha (R. H. Cambage); with fruits a little more sub-cylindrical and perhaps [?] more domed than the type. Specimens from the same locality with nearly pilular fruits and very [?] narrow juvenile foliage.

Near 11-mile post, Inverell to Tingha (R. H. Cambage). Form with even narrower leaves than the type (of E. eugenioides).

Tingha to Guyra, 19 miles from the latter place (J.H.M. and J. L. Boorman). Juvenile leaves intermediate. Mature leaves broadish. Fruits (from same tree) flat-rimmed, domed; valves exsert and sunk; hemispherical and inclined to be sub-cylindrical.

I place this specimen under E. eugenioides, and it certainly seems to form a connecting link between the Tingha specimens and the supposed hybrid which follows.

Between Tingha and Guyra, 19 miles from the latter (J. L. Boorman). “Stringybark,” medium-sized trees growing in swampy ground in company with that of E. stellulata and E. nova-anglica. An interesting form; leaves broad, thickish. None of the fruits with exserted valves, which is unusual in northern specimens. I am of opinion that here we have a hybrid between E. eugenioides and E. stellulata.

I abstained from describing them as a new species, as I attributed them to a form of E. eugenioides or to a hybrid of the same. I concur, however, in Mr. Baker's action in describing them as a new species.

This material extends the range somewhat. The railway station of Guyra is 386 miles north of Sydney, and Tingha runs north-westerly. I have no doubt that the species will be found over a moderately wide area in these cold mountain districts.

Tree of 50 feet, evidently a Black Sally, but the fruits are smaller. Summit of Ben Lomond (William Dunn, 1908, No. 336). Ben Lomond railway station is 401 miles north of Sydney, and the summit of the mountain, only a few miles from the railway station, is over 5,000 feet high. This extends the range northerly, bringing it to a few miles south of Glen Innes.

Affinities.

1. With E. stellulata Sieb.

“The small stellate clusters of buds are larger than those of E. stellulata, but the colour of the upper branches, though fainter, is also suggestive of that species. The leaves are more inclined to lanceolate than ovate in shape, as obtains in E. stellulata, whilst the venation is distinct. The midrib is stronger, and the venation not so parallel as in E. stellulata. The bark, timber, and especially the fruits are also different. …

The oil of this species differs considerably from that of E. stellulata, in the presence of such a large amount of pinene, in a deficiency in phellandrene, and consequently a much less lævo-rotation, in the large amount of high boiling constituents, and in an increased ester-content. …

One or two trees were noticed in another locality, associated with E. stellulata, from which it is easily distinguished in the field. …

In a botanical sequence, it might be placed between the Stringybarks and the Gums or Smoothbarks, such as E. stellulata or E. coriacea.” (Original description.)

I have stated my former opinion that it is a stellulata hybrid. There is no doubt that the two species are very closely related. For E. stellulata see Plate 25, Part V.




  ― 189 ―

2. With E. coriacea A. Cunn.

“The venation somewhat resembles that of E. coriacea, but the fruits are different, and especially the buds and bark.” (Original description.)

E. coriacea has a close affinity to E. stellulata, so that E. Laseroni has affinity to E. coriacea, but far less than to E. stellulata. For E. coriacea see Plates 26 and 27, Part V.

3. With E. capitellata Sm.

“The fruits fairly well match those of E. capitellata, but this is the only resemblance to that species amongst Stringybarks.” (Original description.)

The Stringybark in question is E. eugenioides rather than E. capitellata, as will be seen from examination of fig. 17, Plate 40, Part VIII.

4. With E. eugenioides Sieb.

I have already stated that I looked upon E. Laseroni as a stellulata x eugenioides, which is an expression of opinion that an affinity is to E. eugenioides. The resemblance between E. oblonga DC., see fig. 6 (for Sieber's Fl. Nov. Holl. No. 583, the type), and fig. 7, Plate 40, Part VIII, “White Stringybark” of the Mudgee district, and E. Laseroni is obvious, and most people look upon E. oblonga as synonymous with E. eugenioides.

5. With E. dives Schauer.

“The venation (of E. Laseroni) seems to be intermediate between that of the typical Stringybarks and the Peppermint group, but more approaching that of E. dives.” (Original description.)

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