Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Schizomeria ovata D.Don

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Leaves and fruit. ©
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO

Don, D. (1830) Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal 9 : 95. Type: In Novae Hollandiae, Georgius Caley. (v.s.sp. in Herb. Lamb.).

Common name

Cherry Birch; Birch, White; Coach-wood; Corkwood; Crabapple; Humbug; Lightwood; New South Wales White Ash; Snowberry; Squeaker; White Birch; White Cherry; Cherry, White


Dark, almost black flecks may be visible in the blaze.


Leaf blades about 6-12 x 2.5-4.5 cm. Lateral veins forming loops inside the blade margin and midrib raised on the upper surface; marginal teeth curved, not sharp. Stipules about 3-6 x 1-2 mm, tapering to the apex.


Inflorescence many flowered, approximating or exceeding the leaves. Calyx lobes about 2.5 mm long. Petals about 2.5 mm long, apex with three or four narrow lobes about 0.5 mm long. Stamens ten, staminal filaments about 1.5 mm long, inserted outside the 10-lobed disk. Ovary apex glabrous.


Fruits ovoid, about 15 mm long. Calyx lobes persistent (often reflexed) at the base of the fruit.


Cotyledons narrowly elliptic, apex rounded, about 20 x 6 mm. Petiole very short or nil. At the tenth leaf stage: leaves elliptic, apex acuminate, base attenuate, margins serrate, midrib raised on the upper surface; stipules interpetiolar, about 2 mm long. Seed germination time 480 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Australia, occurs in NEQ, CEQ and southwards to south-eastern New South Wales. Altitudinal range in NEQ from 600-800 m. Grows in rain forest and also as an understory tree in wet sclerophyll forest.

Natural History & Notes

Seldom grows large enough to produce a millable log in northern Queensland but does so further south.

Produces a useful cabinet timber and general purpose timber.

Wood specific gravity 0.64. Cause et al. (1989).

RFK Code
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