Some Native Plants of Kahibah, Iluka and Ettymalong Creeks and Surrounding bushland

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Some Native Plants of Kahibah, Iluka and Ettymalong Creeks and Surrounding bushland.
Note: not a complete list



Soil / habitat

Acacia decurrens

Sydney green wattle


Small tree with angular branches, hairless leaves with long yellow leaflets and bright yellow flowers. Flowers July-Sept

Acacia elata

Mountain or cedar wattle


Medium size tree with dense spreading foliage.

Rainforest valleys and volcanic tops.

Acacia longifolia

Sydney Golden Wattle

Tall or rounded shrub – golden yellow flowers. Flowering July – Nov.

Moist forest understoreys

Acacia longifolia var sophorae


Willow droopy foliage – pale yellow cylindrical flowers.

Sheltered places in woodland

Acacia suaveolens -

Sweet wattle


Slim graceful blue green shrub with sharply angular stems. Cream globular flowers in winter.

Heath and woodlands.

Acacia ulicifolia –

Prickly moses

1.5 m

Wiry, prickly shrub. Cream solitary flowers in winter.

Dry woodlands

Allocasuarina torulosa

Forest Oak


Understorey tree in woodland and forests often forming dense groves

High nutrient soils and moist situations

Alphitonia excelsa –

Red Ash or liniment tree


Small to medium tree with smooth grey bark. Tiny pale green flowers with black glossy fruit. Flowers – Dec-March.

Rainforest tree.

Angophora floribunda –

Rough barked apple

Small - med

Small to medium tree with fibrous bark and sinuously contorted upper limbs.

Prefers moist valleys and deep alluvial soils.



Soil / habitat

Banksia integrafolia –

Coastal Banksia


Small to medium tree. Leaves are stiff and leathery with white under surface. Flowering Jan – June.

Coastal scrubs and forests.

Banksia serrata –

Old man banksia


A venerable gnarled thick tree trunked shrub or small tree. Common in heaths and forests on sandy soils.

Sandy soils.

Breynia oblongifolia-

Coffee bush


Erect shrub with greyish green leaves and red branchlets. Common in rainforest margins, creek gullies and moist gullies.

Rainforest margin and moist gullies

Callicoma serratifolia –

Black wattle

Usually 4-5 m can get to 15m

Beautiful large spreading shrub with wattle like flowers. Creamy yellow flowers in dense ball shapes. Flowers Oct - November.

Gullies and damp sheltered cliff edges.

Callistemon citrinus –

Endeavour bottlebrush


Erect shrub about with crimson flowers. Crushed leaves have lemony scent.

Swampy heath land

Casuarina glauca –

Swamp oak or she oak


Neat and pyramidal when young, maturing into a tall but straggly tree. It grows in tall dense stands.

Prefers brackish marshes and estuaries and muddy creeks.

Clerodendron tomentosum –

Lolly bush


Small shrub/tree. Dark furry leaves. White flowers in Oct-Nov. Pretty fruit which turns from green to red and finally black. Young trees often fail. Mature trees less common.

Moist gullies and rainforest margins.

Elaeocarpus reticulatus –

Blueberry Ash


A tall straight understorey tree. Very pretty tree with masses of white flowers and pretty blue berries. Leaves turn red before falling with age. Flowers Nov-Dec.

Grows from stony ridges to wet gullies. Recovers well from fires.

Eucalyptus botryoides –

Bangalay, Southern Mahogany


Medium size tree with rough reddish bark, short trunk and spreading crown. Flowers Jan – March.

Sandy soils – usually dine scrub within reach of coastal salt mist.

Eucalyptus maculata –

Spotted gum

30 m

Medium to tall tree with beautiful leopard skin bark. Winter flowering.

Open forest and shales.

Eucalyptus robusta –

Swamp mahogany


Small to medium tree. Timber is durable and rot resistant. Winter flowering. Important winter food tree.

Prefers marshy ground along creek and estury margins.

Exocarpus strictus –

Pale ballart or dwarf currant


An erect shrub. Yellowish green flowers with yellow anthers. Flowers in spring. Uncommon.

found in woodland and sandstone

Ficus coronata –

Sandpaper or creek fig


Small tree with rough leaves that feel like sandpaper. Fruit small figs Jan- June. Good shade tree.

Creek banks

Ficus rubiginosa –

Rusty fig or Port Jacson fig


Begins life usually as an epiphyte in crevices on sandstone cliffs or on larger trees. Has rusty leaf undersides.

Common on sides of gullies

Glochidion ferdinandi –

Cheese tree


Bushy shrub or tree. Can grow to a large tree in rainforest environment.

Moist, sheltered woodlands usually near sea.

Leptospermum polygalifolium –

Lemon scented Tea Tree


Graceful shrub with lemon scented leaves. White flowers Oct-Dec.

Moist places in woodland.

Melaleuca quinquenervia-

Broad leaf paper bark


Largest of the paperbarks. Cream flowers.

Marshes and nearby forests

Omalanthus populifolius –

Native poplar or bleeding heart


Small tree with heart shaped leaves which turn to rich blood red before falling. Quick growing and good coloniser in disturbed areas.

Rainforest and gullies



Soil / habitat

Persoonia levis –

Smooth geebung

1- 4m

A tall shrub common in health and woodland. In open heath it is small with round leaves . In forest tall with large long leaves. Black papery bark which is brilliant red underneath.

Heath woodland

Persoonia pinifolius –

pine leaf geebung


Spreading shrub with golden yellow flowers crowded towards the ends of branches.

Sheltered open forests on sandstone.

Pittosporum revolutum –

Mock orange


Opportunistic shrub with orange warty 4 ridged box fruit. Yellow flowers in spring.

Moist sheltered situations.

Syzygium paniculatum

Magenta Lillypilly


A small to medium tree with dense foliage.

The fruit is a large crisp and succulent magenta red berry. White flowers in summer.

Trema Aspera

Native Peach or poison peach


A shrub or small tree.

Moist forests on stream banks

Westringia fruticosa

Coast Westringia


A dense spreading shrub often planted in hedges. Flowers have long narrow throats and are white.

Coastal cliffs and headlands.



Soil / habitat
Monocots, groundcovers etc

Commonelina cyanea


A creeping leafy herb with fragile blue flowers. It forms a dense tangled groundcover in gullies and edges of rainforests.

Edge of rainforests.

Dianella caerulea –

Blue Flax lilly


A tufted herb with hard stiff glossy leaves . Rich blue flowers with yellow anthers. Flowers Sept to Nov.

Woodland on sandstone.

Gahnia clarkei –



A tall leafy sedge often forming dense thickets on marshy sites and creek banks.

Marsh and creek banks

Hardenbergia violacea

False sarsparilla


Scrambler or twiner with rich purple pea flowers.

Common in woodland.

Hibertia scadens

Golden guinea flower


A vigorous scrambler with dense foliage. Spectacular golden yellow flowers in spring

and summer.

Sunny places on better soils.

Lomandra longifolia, -

Mat rush


A large tufted herb with rough strap like leaves. Flowers exude a heavy lacquer scent.

Range of habitats

Livistona australis

Cabbage tree palm

Tall palm

A tall mop headed palm with leaves like a fan

Rainforest gullies near sea.

Rubus hillii –

Native raspberry


Bramble – a rough climber with long thorny stems. Pinks flowers and raspberry fruit.


Spinifex hirsutus

Course robust grass which spreads by means of long creeping stems. Important grass for stabilising coastal dunes.

Sand dunes.

Themeda australis

Kangaroo grass


Kangaroo grass with a tuft of slender light green leaves & long flowering stem. Distinctive brown and purplish spikelet clusters.

All soil types.

NOTES: 1) Shading indicates trees that grow well in boggy areas next to creek where there is thick black soil.

2) Description extracts from: Robinson Les, Field Guide to Native Plants of Sydney Kangaroo Press 1991.


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