Lophostemon confertus, Fam. Myrtaceae
Locally it most often occurs as a mallee. It can however form a medium to large tree with a dense shay canopy. The bark is grey or brown, fibrous and somewhat scaly on the lower part of the trunk (it can extend well up the trunk) and smooth, brown to pink brown on the upper trunk and branches or rough throughout. Lophostemon from the Greek ‘lophos’ a crest and ‘stemon’ a stamen, referring to the crest like bundles of stamen in the flower, confertus from the Latin meaning brought together, crowded, referring to the leaves being clustered together at the ends of the branchlets.
|Form or habit:||Small tree, Med tree, Large Tree|
Simple, appearing to be in whorls because they are crowded together at thee end of the branchlets, entire, elliptic to ovate-lanceolate, 10-14 x 4-4.5cm. Discolourous, glossy dark green above and paler below. Oil dots numerous but scarcely visible. New growth hairy.
|Flower description:||Cymes of three to eight white flowers in leaf axils towards the ends of the branchlets. Stamens are united in five bundles that alternate with the petals. August to May.|
|Fruit description:||Hemispherical, brown, three valved capsules, about 1cm in diameter, woody with a smooth surface. September to May.|
|Habitat:||Open forest, rainforest, woodland.|
|Distribution||Queensland, New South Wales.|
|Food source for:||Flowers eaten by the black and grey headed flying foxes, rainbow and scaly breasted lorikeets. Nectar eaten by the rainbow and scaly breasted lorikeets and the white plumed, white naped and scarlet honeyeaters. Seed eaten by the red tailed black cockatoo, gang gang cockatoo, crimson rosella and pale headed rosella. Larval food lant of the eastern dusk flat, ornate dusk flat, bronze flat and coral jewel butterflies and of the moths Aenetus ligniveren (a common splendid ghost moth), Agriophara levis, Chrysonoma fascialis, Doratifera casta (black slug cup moth), Doratifera vulneran (mottled cup moth), Gastrophora henricaria, Hyalarcta huebneri (leaf case moth, Hylarcta nigrescens (ribbed case moth), Macarostola polyplaca, Panacela leinae (Lewin’s bag shelter moth), Panacela pilosa, Piloprepes gelidella, Porela arida, Stigmella anazona, Titanoceros cataxantha and Pectinivalva spp. Larvae of the moth Cryptophasa epadelpha feed in the stems and branches.|
|Toxicity:||No toxicity known|
|Notes:||Useful shade tree for parks and street planting. Moderately drought resistant, suitable for a range of soil types including poorly drained soils. Seed germinates readily, and can be stored for several years at 2°C. Seedlings have a lignotuber. Resprouts from the base after fire. The very pale honey from this species is of good quality and is used in blending. The timber is red to pink brown, hard and strong.|
|Information sources:||Melzer R. & Plumb J. (2007) Plants of Capricornia.|