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  ― 22 ―

CCXXVII. E. Drummondii Bentham.

In B.Fl. iii, 237 (1866).

Leaves from ovate oblong to lanceolate, obtuse or acuminate, under 3 inches long, very thick, with very fine close parallel veins, very diverging or almost transverse, but scarcely conspicuous, the intramarginal one close to the edge. Peduncles axillary or lateral, ½ to 1½ inches long, terete or nearly so, each bearing an umbel of 3 to 6 rather large flowers on terete pedicels often ½ inch long. Calyx-tube broadly hemispherical, hard and smooth, 4 to 5 lines diameter. Operculum conical, rather broader and considerably longer than the calyx-tube. Stamens about ½ inch long, inflected in the bud; anthers rather small, ovate, with distinct parallel cells. Disk very broad, nearly flat, forming a prominent ring round the ovary, of which the obtusely conical centre protrudes about 1 or 1½ lines above the disk at the time of flowering. Fruit unknown.

The fruit was unknown to Bentham when he described E. Drummondii in B.Fl. iii, 237, and apparently Mueller only saw the young fruits. They will be found at fig. 7, Plate 74. Juvenile foliage petiolate, ovate, intramarginal vein close to edge (specimens of O. H. Sargent, near York, W.A.), but neither it nor the anthers figured until figs. 10–12, Plate 171, of the present part.

Synonym.

E. Oldfieldii F.v.M., var. Drummondii Maiden, at Part XVII, p. 223, of the present work.

Mueller, in “Eucalyptographia,” under E. Oldfieldii, uses the following words:—

So far as I can judge from Drummond's specimen No. 86, no other discrepancies of the latter (as regards E. Oldfieldii) exist than the smaller size of the leaves, flowers and young fruits, and the comparatively greater length of the flower stalks and stalklets, but such differences are not in every case of specific value, and as the bud and ripe fruit remained hitherto unknown the final settling of this question is not yet possible. If E. Drummondii should prove a mere variety, as seems likely.…

Mueller continued to hold the opinion that E. Drummondii was not distinct from E. Oldfieldii, for he omitted it from his Census. Luehmann (Proc. Aust. Assoc. Adv. Science, vii, 532, 1898) writes: “E. Drummondii seems a variety of this (E. Oldfieldii), being smaller in all its parts.”




  ― 23 ―

After consideration, in Part XVII of the present work, I constituted E. Drummondii as a variety of E. Oldfieldii as already stated, adopting Drummond's No. 86 (the type of E. Drummondii) as the type for the variety. I am now of opinion that E. Drummondii is a valid species.

Range.

It is confined to Western Australia. As in the case of so many other of Drummond's specimens, we do not know precisely their localities, but inasmuch as it has only been certainly found since from the York district, we have an indication of Drummond's locality, and I would urge systematic search for the species. Local observers are now aware that it has long been confused with E. Lane-Poolei (a species to which it is more closely related than E. Oldfieldii), and this should facilitate search.

Drummond's No. 86. The inflorescence varies in size somewhat in various specimens. Figured at 3 and 6, Plate 74.

The following specimen matches the type absolutely:—

Small tree of about 20 feet. Trunk and branches smooth, whitish buff, with a few brown semi-detached scales of dead bark. Leaves dull green. Growing in light, humous soil, mixed with ironstone gravel. Cut Hill, York (O. H. Sargent, No. 266). (Figured at 5 and 7, Plate 74.)

Also St. Ronan's Well, near York (C. E. Lane Poole).

The following specimens have been examined:—

No. 86 (Drummond). Herb. Cant. and Herb. Oxon. The former in bud (one), but mostly early fruit. The latter mostly in bud and flower, and a little early fruit.

Affinities.

  • 1. With E. Oldfieldii F.v.M. See p. 21.
  • 2. With E. Lane-Poolei Maiden, in Proc. Roy. Soc. N.S.W. liii, p. 107, (1919). This is its closest affinity, and will be dealt with when E. Lane-Poolei is reached.
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