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  ― 111 ―

CCXLVI. E. lirata (W. V. Fitzgerald)' Maiden n.sp.

ARBOR ca. 30 m. alta, caulis diametro, 1 ad 1·5 m.; cortice aspera, cinerea sed molle et fere friable in trunco ramisque persistente, ligno brunneo; foliis aliquando oppositis, 8–10 cm. longis, petiolatis, flores, non vidi fructibus 3–5, breviter pedicellatis, ovoideo-oblongis, orificio paullo contractis; marginibus tenuibus capsulis depressis.

Arborescent; branchlets cylindrical; leaves opposite, subopposite, or alternate, lanceolate, straight or falcate, acuminate, petiolate, dull-greyish on both pages, oil-dots crowded, veins inconspicuous, ascending, the intramarginal one not far removed from the edge; fruits 3–5 together, shortly pedicellate, on terete lateral or axillary solitary peduncles, ovoid-oblong, obscurely contracted between the summits, the rims thin; capsule sunk; valves 3, somewhat triangular, semi-exserted; fertile seeds ovate, slightly compressed, dark-brown, punctate, the sterile ones very much smaller, narrow, and angular.

Height, 30–40 feet; trunk to 15 feet, diameter 1–1½ feet. Bark rough and greyish, but soft and almost friable, resembling that of some forms of E. amygdalina Labill., persistent on trunk and limbs. Timber brownish, fairly hard and rather free in the grain. Leaves 3–4 in. long, petioles ?–½ inch. Peduncles 3–5 lines. Flowers not seen. Fruits about 5 lines (1 cm.) long.

Range.

It is only known, at present, from the type locality in the Kimberleys, North West Australia, where it was collected by Mr. Fitzgerald, viz., summit of Bold Bluff, in sandy soil overlying quartzite.

(The closely allied E. similis is found in west Central Queensland. We want further collections between the localities recorded for the two species, not only that we may know more about them, but in order that this knowledge may enable us to say whether we are justified in keeping them apart, or whether they are forms of the same species.)

Affinity.

With E. similis Maiden.

The two species are so closely related that I regret that the material of E. lirata is so scanty that it is impossible to make a final pronouncement.

The colour and lustre (or absence of it) of the foliage of the two species resemble each other (as indeed does that of E. eudesmioides).




  ― 112 ―

Mr. Fitzgerald says nothing of the yellowness of the bark of E. lirata, which is obvious in E. similis; one is an eastern and the other a western species, but these points must not be urged too strongly.

Of the material available to me of E. lirata (a few leaves, fruits, and seeds), together with Mr. Fitzgerald's description, I have spoken of the leaves, and my readers may also consult the figures. The fruits are different in the types, but those of E. similis (as shown in figure 4, Plate 184) approximate to the shape of those of E. lirata (figure 5b), although the former are larger. The fruits of E. similis would appear to be more numerous than those of E. lirata. Compare figures 3e and 5b, but, as regards the latter, the description says “3 to 5.”

The seeds of E. lirata are wingless, like those of E. similis, but those of the former appear to be larger and rounder. At the same time I have not much of either before me.

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