The information given for each of the species in this section is a summary of know­



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Publication:

 Bulletin de la classe physico-mathématique 

de l’Académie Impériale des Sciences de Saint-Pétersbourg 

10: 343 (1852)

Derivation:

 adnata, from the Latin adnatus, adnate, in 

reference to the leaf orientation



Description:

 

Shrub 

0.8–6 m tall; bark papery­fibrous. 

Branchlets 

glabrescent, pubescent or lanuginose. 



Leaves 

decussate, peltate, 4.3–12.5 mm long, 1.4–3.8 mm 

wide, 2–9 times as long as wide, sessile; blade glabrescent 

to hairy, lanuginose­pubescent, pubescent or lanuginose, 

sometimes also with sericeous hairs, narrowly ovate, ovate 

or narrowly elliptic, in transverse section lunate, shallowly 

lunate or transversely semielliptic, the base attenuate or 

truncate, the apex narrowly acute to very narrowly acute, 

the veins longitudinal, 5–7, 

oil glands 

obscure to distinct, 

more or less in rows. 

Inflorescences 

spicate, lateral (usually 

below the leaves) and rarely also interstitial in that a leafy 

axis may be distal to the inflorescence, with 8–50 mon­

ads, up to 15 mm wide. 

Hypanthium 

hairy (sometimes 

very sparsely so), 1.2–1.5 mm long. 

Calyx lobes 

abaxially 

glabrous, usually costate, 0.8–1.1 mm long, scarious in 

a broad marginal band 0.1–0.2 mm wide. 



Petals 

usually 


caducous, 1.7–2.1 mm long. 

Stamens 

10–16 per bundle; 

filaments white, cream or rarely pale pink, 2.7–6.8 mm 

long, the bundle claw 1.8–3.8 mm long, 0.5–0.7 times as 

long as the filaments. 

Style 

5.5–9.3 mm long. 



Ovules 

7–13 


per locule. 

Fruit 

2–3.3 mm long, the calyx lobes abaxi­

ally usually weathering away, rarely replaced by poorly 

developed sepaline teeth or the lobes persistent; cotyledons 

obvolute.

Natural occurrence:

 Western Australia: from the 

Kalbarri district south and east to the Ongerup and Mt 

Holland districts.

Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring in dense low shrubland, 

open eucalypt woodland, tall open eucalypt forest, mallee, 

sparse tall shrubland, clay depression, on brown sandy soil, 

sandy loam with laterite, stony slopes, and red loam.



Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from July to 

January.


Essential oils:

 The leaf oil of this species contained 

mainly monoterpenes. The principal components were 

1,8­cineole (28–39%), b­pinene (18–20%), a­pinene 

(6–8%), limonene (7–9%) and a­terpineol (7–8%). The 

main sesquiterpenes were a­, b­ and g­eudesmol (each 

2–5%) and globulol (1–3%).



Oil yield:

 The oil yield (fresh weight, w/w) was 0.2–0.5%. 

Melaleuca 

adnata

Turcz.


71

7. Species ac

counts

 —

Melaleuc



a ag

athosmoide

s

Publication:

 Hooker’s icones plantarum, ser. 5, 4: t. 3381 

(1939)


Derivation:

 agathosmoides, from Agathosma, a genus of 

Rutaceae, and the Greek ­oides, resembling, in reference to 

a perceived resemblance to species of Agathosma



Description:

 

Shrub 

0.5–1.5 m tall; bark fibrous. 

Branchlets 

glabrous. 



Leaves 

decussate, peltate, 2–3 mm 

long, 1–1.8 mm wide, 1.4–2 times as long as wide, sessile; 

blade glabrescent (hairs present as marginal cilia only), 

obovate, elliptic or oblong, in transverse section lunate 

or broadly v­shaped, the base truncate to cordate, the 

apex rounded or broadly acute, the veins longitudinal, 5, 

oil glands 

sparse, distinct, scattered. 



Inflorescences 

lateral 


(produced on old wood, the flowers often in lines), with 

1–20 monads. 



Hypanthium 

glabrous, 1.8–2.5 mm long. 



Calyx lobes 

abaxially glabrous, costate, 1.5–2 mm long, 

scarious in a marginal band 1–2 mm wide. 

Petals 

decidu­


ous, 3.0–4.5 mm long. 

Stamens 

12–19 per bundle; 

filaments white or greenish­white, 3.2–6.0 mm long, the 

bundle claw 2.5–5.0 mm long. 



Style 

6.0–7.6 mm long. 



Ovules 

20–30 per locule. 



Fruit 

3.5–4.5 mm long, with 

sepaline teeth; cotyledons planoconvex.

Natural occurrence:

 Western Australia: the Lake 

King district.



Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring in Melaleuca shrub­

land, regenerating mallee with shrub understorey, on 

brown stony clay soil, red clay, and well­drained loamy 

clay.


Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from July to 

November.



Essential oils:

  This species produced a mainly 

monoterpenoid oil, though no compound predominated. 

The principal monoterpenes encountered were a­pinene 

(14.3%), b­pinene (8.0%), pinocarvone (4.0%), trans­

pinocarveol (10.7%), verbenone (8.3%) and an unknown 

oxygenated monoterpene, molecular weight 148. The main 

sesquiterpenes encountered were spathulenol (7.8%), 

globulol (7.5%) and ledol (2.2%).



Oil yield:

 The oil yield (fresh weight, w/w) was 0.3%.



Notes:

 This species has novelty interest as its flowers 

seemingly erupt from the branchlets and branches but the 

flowers unfortunately are not as attractive as they are in the 

pink­ to purple­flowered M. suberosa, another species in 

which the flowers are inserted on the branches.



Melaleuca 

agathosmoides

C.A.Gardner



72

Melaleuc

a alsophila

 —

 7



. Species ac

counts


Publication:

 Flora Australiensis 3: 137 (1867)

Derivation:

 alsophila, from the Greek, alsos, grove, and 

­philos, loving, in reference to the common occurrence of 

this species in groves



Synonym:

 Melaleuca acacioides subsp. alsophila (A.Cunn. 

ex Benth.) Barlow



Description:

 

Tree or shrub 

3–15 m tall; bark papery, 

white, pale grey or brownish­white. 

Branchlets 

glabrescent 

to sericeous. 

Leaves 

alternate, 25–85 mm long, 5–11 mm 

wide, 3.5–10.5 times as long as wide, short­petiolate; 

blade glabrescent to sericeous with many lanuginulose 

hairs, narrowly elliptic or narrowly obovate, in transverse 

section transversely linear, the base attenuate, the apex 

obtuse, rounded, acute, narrowly acute or acuminate, the 

veins longitudinal, 5–7, 



oil glands 

dense to sparse, usu­

ally obscure, scattered. 

Inflorescences 

capitate, usually 

lateral or sometimes pseudoterminal or rarely interstitial, 

with 2–15 dyads, 12–15 mm wide. 



Hypanthium 

hairy, 


1.2–1.6 mm long. 

Calyx lobes 

abaxially glabrous or hairy

0.8–1 mm long, scarious in a marginal band 0.2–0.3 mm 

wide. 


Petals 

caducous, 1.8–2.3 mm long. 



Stamens 

9–16 per 

bundle; filaments white to cream (rarely recorded as red­

dish), 3.4–6.8 mm long, the bundle claw 2–3.1 mm long, 

0.3–0.5 times as long as the filaments. 

Style 

6.7–8 mm 

long. 

Ovules 

6–9 per locule. 



Fruit 

1.5–2.3 mm long, the 

calyx lobes abaxially persistent or deciduous; cotyledons 

obvolute.



Natural occurrence:

 Western Australia, Northern 

Territory: the Kimberley region of Western Australia and 

the adjacent region of the Northern Territory, and the 

northern coastal region of the Great Sandy Desert region 

of Western Australia.

Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring in low open woodland, 

edges of saltmarsh behind mangrove, vine thicket behind 

coastal dune, low­lying woodland, sandy creek beds, on 

silty soil, white clay, red sand, black alluvial soil, and rocky 

slopes.

Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from May to 

December.



Essential oils:

 This species appeared to exist in several 

chemical forms, in which a­pinene/1,8­cineole or 

p­cymene/terpinen­4­ol were prominent. The pinene/

cineole form (GJM 1764) contained a­pinene (8–66%) or 

1,8­cineole (15–66%) as principal component, with lesser 

amounts of trans­pinocarveol (1–17%) as the next most 

abundant component. No other component was more than 

1%. The p­cymene/terpinen­4­ol form (BVG 2354) con­

tained p­cymene (21–44%), terpinen­4­ol (15–28%) and 

geranial (12–19%) as principal components, with lesser 

amounts of a­pinene (2–4%) and limonene (1–3%). 

Another collection (JB 156, from Derby) contained 

1,8­cineole (30–44%) and terpinen­4­ol (15–28%) as prin­

cipal components.



Oil yield:

 The oil yields (fresh weight, w/w) were 0.1% 

(GJM 1764), 1.0–1.2% (BVG 2354) and 0.1–0.3% (JB 156).



References on essential oils:

 Brophy et al. 1987; 

Brophy 1999



Notes:

 As with M. acacioides, this species may have 

potential for shelter belts or specimen plantings in regions 

with saline soils and a monsoonal tropical climate. There 

may be potential for cultivation of the chemical variety 

containing terpinen­4­ol/geranial, although a market 

would have to be found for this oil type and the yields 

would have to be improved.

ALREADY SCALED TO 150%

Melaleuca 

alsophila

A.Cunn. ex Benth.



73

7. Species ac

counts

 —

Melaleuc



a alt

ernif

olia

Publication:

 Journal and Proceedings of the Royal 

Society of New South Wales 58: 195 (1924)

Derivation:

 alternifolia, from the Latin alternus, alter­

nate, folium, leaf, in reference to the leaf arrangement

Description:

 

Shrub or tree 

2.5–14 m tall; bark papery, 

peeling in long flakes, reddish­brown. 



Branchlets 

glabres­


cent, lanuginulose or lanuginose­pubescent. 

Leaves 

usually 


alternate (sometimes alternate and ternate or rarely alter­

nate and decussate), 10–32 mm long, 0.4–1 mm wide, 

20–40 times as long as wide, short­petiolate to subsessile; 

blade glabrescent, lanuginulose or lanuginose­pubescent, 

linear, in transverse section shallowly lunate, lunate or 

transversely semielliptic, the base attenuate, the apex 

narrowly acute, the veins apparently longitudinal, 3, 

oil glands 

dense or moderately dense, distinct to obscure, 

scattered to more or less in rows. 

Inflorescences 

spicate, 

pseudoterminal and often also upper axillary, rarely 

approaching interstitial, with 6–24 monads, up to 

25 mm wide. 

Hypanthium 

glabrous or sometimes hairy, 

1.7–2 mm long. 

Calyx lobes 

abaxially glabrous, 1.1–1.3 mm 

long, scarious in a marginal band 0.1–0.2 mm wide. 

Petals 

deciduous, 2.3–2.7 mm long. 



Stamens 

33–41 per 

bundle; filaments white, 13–14 mm long, the bundle 

claw 8.6–10.5 mm long, 0.7–0.8 times as long as the 

filaments. 

Style 

c. 3.8 mm long. 



Ovules 

c. 85 per locule. 



Fruit 

2.8–4 mm long, the calyx lobes abaxially persistent 

or replaced by sepaline teeth; cotyledons obvolute.

Natural occurrence:

 Queensland, New South Wales: 

from the Stanthorpe district in Queensland south and east 

into New South Wales to the Lismore and Grafton areas, 

with disjunct populations near Port Macquarie. Range in 

elevation is from near sea level to 800 m.



Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring on coastal plains and 

adjacent ranges where it grows on seasonally inundated 

swamps and along watercourses, on mainly alluvial silty 

loams, and sandy loams derived from granite.

Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from June to 

February.



Essential oils:

 This species was reported by Homer et 

al. (2000) to contain six chemotypes and, while statistics 

do show this, principally there were three main chemi­

cal forms. The main commercial chemotype contained 

terpinen­4­ol (30–40%, with some provenances going up 

to 50%). This was accompanied by significant amounts 

of a­terpinene and g­terpinene. Chemotype II contained 

1,8­cineole (25–90%) and associated monoterpenes. 

Chemotype III contained terpinolene (40–55%) as its 

principal component.

Oil yield:

 The oil yield (fresh weight, w/w) was 3–6%, 

though the terpinolene chemotype (chemotype III) was 

lower (4–5%).



References on essential oils:

 Southwell et al. 1992; 

Southwell 1999 and references therein; Homer et al. 2000



Notes:

 Selected forms of M. alternifolia are used as a 

source of tea tree oil and this is discussed separately (see 

Chapter 3). The species is also suitable for use as an orna­

mental and is probably more reliable in damp soils than 

the closely related M. linariifolia.



Melaleuca 

alternifolia

(Maiden & Betche) Cheel



74

Melaleuc

a am

ydr

a

 7



. Species ac

counts


Publication:

 in Craven & Lepschi, Australian System-

atic Botany 12: 859 (1999)

Derivation:

 amydra, from the Greek amydros, indistinct, 

unclear, in reference to the similarity of this species to 

M. seriata and M. ryeae



Description:

 

Shrub 

0.3–2.5 m tall; bark fibrous. 



Branchlets 

glabrescent, pubescent to lanuginose­pubescent 

or lanuginose to lanuginulose. 

Leaves 

alternate, (2.8–)3.5–

6(–7.6) mm long, (1.3–)1.5–2(–2.7) mm wide, 

(1.5–)2–2.8(–4.8) times as long as wide, subsessile or rarely 

short­petiolate; blade glabrescent, lanuginose­pubescent 

to pubescent, or sometimes lanuginose, elliptic to narrowly 

elliptic or rarely narrowly obovate, in transverse section 

transversely linear, sublunate or lunate, the base narrowly 

cuneate or rarely cuneate or attenuate, the apex obtuse to 

rounded or rarely acute, the veins longitudinal, 3, 



oil glands 

moderately dense, distinct to obscure, in rows 

(sometimes more or less so) or scattered. 

Inflorescences 

capitate, pseudoterminal and sometimes also 

upper axillary, with 7–20 monads, up to 20 mm wide. 

Hypanthium 

hairy, 1.5–2 mm long. 



Calyx lobes 

abaxially 

glabrous or hairy, 0.5–1.8 mm long, scarious in a marginal 

band 0.25–0.9 mm wide or scarious throughout. 



Petals 

deciduous, 1.5–3 mm long. 



Stamens 

5–10 per bun­

dle; filaments pink or mauve to purple, 7–10 mm long, the 

bundle claw 2.5–4 mm long, 0.3–0.5 times as long as the 

filaments. 

Style 

8.5–10.5 mm long. 



Ovules 

10–15 per loc­

ule. 

Infructescences 

peg­fruited or sometimes approaching 

globose. 

Fruit 

3–3.5 mm long, often with very weakly 

developed sepaline teeth; cotyledons obvolute.

Natural occurrence:

 Western Australia: from the 

Arrowsmith River district south to the Dandaragan–

Moora district.

Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring in open heath, sand 

plain, heath on marshy flat, low closed forest, shrubland, 

a flood plain, on sand over lateritic gravel and clay, peaty 

sand, and loam.

Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from Septem­

ber to November.



Essential oils:

 The leaf oil of this species was domi­

nated by monoterpenes. The principal component was 

1,8­cineole (55.2%) and there were lesser amounts of 

a­pinene (11.7%), b­pinene (2.0%), limonene (1.8%), lin­

alool (1.2%) and a­terpineol (4.0%). Sesquiterpenes did 

not contribute much to the oil. Their major components 

were spathulenol (7.8%), bicyclogermacrene, globulol and 

a­cadinol (all 0.5–1.0%).



Oil yield:

 The oil yield (fresh weight, w/w) was 0.2%.

Melaleuca 

amydra

Craven


75

7. Species ac

counts

 —

Melaleuc



a apodoc

ephala

Publication:

 Bulletin de la classe physico-mathématique 

de l’Académie Impériale des Sciences de Saint-Pétersbourg 

10: 340 (1852)

Derivation:

 apodocephala, from the latinised Greek, 

apodus, sessile, and ­cephalus, headed, in reference to the 

sessile inflorescence

Description:

 

Shrub 

0.2–4 m tall. 



Branchlets 

soon 


glabrescent (the lanuginulose hairs ephemeral). 

Leaves 

alternate, 4–11.5 mm long, 0.7–1.7 mm wide, 

5–12 times as long as wide, subsessile to short­petiolate; 

blade soon glabrescent (the lanuginulose­puberulous to 

lanuginulose hairs ephemeral), linear, linear­obovate, 

linear­ovate, very narrowly obovate or very narrowly 

ovate, in transverse section transversely narrowly elliptic, 

transversely elliptic, subcircular or flattened transversely 

semielliptic, the base broadly attenuate or narrowly 

cuneate, the apex obtusely shortly acuminate, acuminate, 

narrowly acute, acute or rounded, the veins longitudi­

nal, 3, 


oil glands 

sparse, obscure, more or less in rows. 



Inflorescences 

capitate, lateral or pseudoterminal and 

then approaching interstitial, with 1–15 monads, up to 

12 mm wide. 



Hypanthium 

glabrescent, 1–2 mm long. 



Calyx lobes 

abaxially glabrescent or glabrous, 0.6–

1.2 mm long, herbaceous to (or almost to) the margin. 

Petals 

deciduous, 1.2–2.3 mm long. 



Stamens 

6–13 per 

bundle; filaments white or creamy­white, 1.5–5.5 mm long, 

the bundle claw 0.2–0.3 mm long, 0.1–0.4 times as long as 

the filaments. 

Style 

4–6 mm long. 



Ovules 

15–40 per loc­

ule. 

Fruit 

3–5.5 mm long, with sepaline teeth; cotyledons 

subobvolute (almost planoconvex).

Natural occurrence:

 Western Australia: from the 

Stirling Range east to the Truslove district.



Ecology:

 Recorded as occurring in low open heath, 

dense low heath in open shrub mallee, on sand, and damp 

sandy loam.

Flowering time:

 Recorded as flowering from January 

to December.



Essential oils:

 This species produced a leaf oil that 

contained significant amounts of both mono­ and ses­

quiterpenes. The principal monoterpenes were a­pinene 

(14.8%), b­pinene (15.0%), limonene (8.6%) and a­terpi­

neol (2.8%). The major sesquiterpenes detected were 

spathulenol (13.0%), globulol (10.3%), bicyclogermacrene 

(2.6%), cubeban­11­ol (2.7%), b­caryophyllene (1.9%), 

viridiflorene (1.0%) and viridiflorol (3.1%).



Oil yield:

 The oil yield (fresh weight, w/w) was 0.1%.



Melaleuca 

apodocephala

Turcz.


76

Melaleuc

a apos

tiba

 —

 7



. Species ac

counts


Publication:

 in Cowley, Quinn, Barlow & Craven, 

Australian Systematic Botany 3: 182, fig. 7c (1990)



Derivation:

 apostiba, from the Greek apostibes, off the 

road, solitary, in reference to the isolated locality of the 

type collection, the only collection then known

Description:

 

Shrub 

to 2 m tall; bark fibrous, grey. 



Branchlets 

hairy, with both lanuginulose and subsericeous 

hairs. 

Leaves 

alternate, 6.5–11 mm long, 1.3–1.7 mm wide, 

5–7 times as long as wide, short­petiolate to subsessile; 

blade glabrescent, with both lanuginulose and subseri­

ceous hairs, narrowly obovate or narrowly elliptic, in 

transverse section transversely narrowly oblong or sub­

lunate, the base attenuate, the apex acute or acuminate, 

the veins longitudinal, 3, 




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