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  ― 71 ―

CCXXXVI. E. ficifolia F.v.M.

In Fragmenta ii, 85 (1860).

FOLLOWING is a translation of the original:—

Leaves moderately petiolate, opposite, ovate-lanceolate or sub-ovate, acute, coriaceous, spreadingly and very finely penniveined in a crowded manner, scarcely pellucid-punctate, straightly and faintly reticulate-veined, paler on the underside, peripheral vein close to the margin, umbels terminal and paniculate, pedicels quadrangular, about the same length as the calyx-tube, fruits large, truncate- or suburceolate-ovate, exangular, three- or four-celled, valves deltoid, deeply included and deflexed, fertile seeds greyish brown with long wings in the fore part, most of the seeds sterile, narrow and elongated.

Bentham (B.Fl. iii, 256), had his doubts as to its specific rank, and dismissed it in the following words:—

E. ficifolia, F. Muell. Fragm. ii, 85. Only known from imperfect specimens in fruit, which differ in no respect from E. calophylla, except that the seeds are of a pale colour and the testa expanded at one end, or round one side into a broad, variously-shaped wing. Further specimens may prove these differences not to be constant.

West Australia. Broke's Inlet, “Black-butt,” Maxwell. From the Hay, Gordon and Tone Rivers in the same neighbourhood are flowering specimens undistinguishable from E. calophylla, which may possibly belong to this species.

It was then more fully described, and also illustrated, by Mueller in the “Eucalyptographia.” Some of his remarks on the colour of the filaments are referred to below.

SUPPOSED VARIETY.

E. ficifolia F.v.M. var. Guilfoylei Bailey, in Proc. Roy. Soc. Q., x, p. 17 (1894).

This is identical with E. calophylla R.Br. var. rosea (Hort.) Maiden, see below, p. 75.

Range.

The type came from Broken Inlet, “near the coast of the estuary, Broken Inlet, south West Australia,” Maxwell. I would suggest that this is a slip of the pen or a limited local name for Brookes' Inlet, between Irwin Inlet and D'Entrecasteaux Point (i.e., approaching Cape Leeuwin).




  ― 72 ―

Bentham says “from the Hay, Gordon and Tone Rivers in the same neighbourhood are flowering specimens undistinguishable from E. calophylla, which may possibly belong to this species.” It may be said that dried flowering specimens of E. ficifolia and E. calophylla may be difficult to discriminate from each other.

Mueller (“Eucalyptographia”) says: “From the western side of Irwin's Inlet to the entrance of the Shannon, constituting a distinct forest belt in the coast region, though not actually approaching the sea-shore.”

Brookes's Inlet appears to be the most westerly locality, and it extends easterly to the west side of Irwin's Inlet and the Shannon River to Irwin's Inlet, and northerly to near Mount Hoskins in the Frankland district. The range of this species, which is not very great, has not yet been definitely ascertained. It is so extensively cultivated in gardens that one has to be on one's guard in recording localities for it, particularly west and north of King George's Sound.

Dr. R. H. Pulleine, of Adelaide, who made an extensive trip, found it “beautifully in flower in December, 1917.” He found it on coastal hills (some of them hundreds of feet high), between Landers' Camp, about 15 miles north-north-west of Nornalup. It forms flat-topped impenetrable thickets, 8–10 feet high, often so thick and inter-twined that you could walk over the top, rather than get through it. He referred me to Mr. Brockman, who obligingly replied as follows:—

“Only found in its wild state along the south coast in small areas extending from Denmark to the Nornalup Inlet, a distance of about 35 miles by roughly 5 miles. There is no large extent of it in this area, and I think about 2,000 acres is about the largest area where it grows, scattered and in stunted trees. There are a few clumps of flat-topped thickets mixed with other varieties of Gums. The largest tree, judging from memory, was about 6 feet (sic) diameter and about 35 feet, with a ragged and spreading top.” (E. J. T. Brockman, Reviley via Balingup.)

It is in the National Herbarium of New South Wales from the following localities:—

“Trees of 12, 14 and 20 feet,” west side of Irwin's Inlet (Sid. W. Jackson, through H. L. White).

“Red-flowering Gum. Height up to 30 feet and up to 3 feet in diameter. Grows on sandy hills near Irwin Inlet and on granite hills near Mt. Hoskins in the Franklin district.” (Dr. F. Stoward, No. 112).

Shannon River; also near Wilson's Inlet (W. V. Fitzgerald).

Affinity.

With E. calophylla R.Br. See p. 78.

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