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Melaleuca dealbata

Family

Myrtaceae

Botanical Name

Melaleuca dealbata S.T.Blake

Blake, S.T. (1968) Contributions from the Queensland Herbarium 1: 41. Type: Northern Territory, ca 12 deg 40 S., ca 131 deg 25 E., Blake 17000; holo: BRI 044839..

Common name

Soapy Tea Tree; Tea Tree; Cloudy Tea Tree; Honey Tree; Melaleuca, White Leaf; Paperbark; White Leaf Melaleuca

Stem

Bark pale. Dead bark layered.

Leaves

Leaf blades long and narrow (narrowly elliptic), about 6-12 x 1.5-2.3 cm, with 3-5 longitudinal veins more prominent than the rest. Young shoots and twigs densely clothed in white or silver, erect hairs.

Flowers

Inflorescences about 15-20 mm wide. Flowers usually in threes. Stamens less than 10 mm long, +/- fused in five bundles opposite the petals.

Fruit

Capsules sessile, about 2-3 mm diam., densely clothed in short, silver, crispate hairs when young.

Seedlings

Cotyledons obovate, about 2-3 x 0.5 mm. First pair of leaves about 4 x 2 mm, with numerous small oil dots visible with a lens. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade glabrous, about 35-40 x 7-10 mm, narrowly elliptic or narrowly obovate, apex apiculate; oil dots numerous, sometimes visible to the naked eye.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP, NEQ and southwards to south-eastern Queensland. Altitudinal range in northern Australia from sea level to 500 m. Grows in open forest, usually on ground which is periodically inundated but also found on rain forest margins. Also occurs in New Guinea.

Natural History

A large tree sometimes grown in wetter areas of parks or as a street tree. Unfortunately the flowers have a rather foetid smell.

WA

X

NT

X

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Tree

X

RFK Code

908