Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Syzygium australe (H.L.Wendl. ex Link) B.Hyland

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Flowers. © Australian Plant Image Index (APII). Photographer: M. Fagg.
Fruit, several views and cross section. © W. T. Cooper
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon and 10th leaf stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO

Hyland, B.P.M. (1983) Australian Journal of Botany Supplementary Series 9: 55.

Common name

Creek Lillipilli; Satinash, Creek; Woolgoolga; Scrub Cherry; Creek Lilly Pilly; Creek Cherry; Brush Cherry; Creek Satinash; Cherry, Brush; Cherry, Creek; Cherry, Scrub; Watergum


Usually a small and poorly formed tree.


Leaf blades rather small, about 3.3-9.5 x 1.2-3.2 cm. Oil dots visible with a lens if not visible to the naked eye. Oil dots rather sparsely scattered. Leafy twigs generally 4-angled or shortly 4-winged, pairs of wings running down from each petiole but amalgamating and forming a pocket or hump above the next lower pair of leaves.


Inflorescence frequently about 3-7 flowered, bracts deciduous, absent at anthesis. Calyx tube (hypanthium) + pedicel about 3-10 mm long, calyx tube (hypanthium) about 2-6.5 mm diam., calyx lobes slightly dimorphic, concave, +/- triangular but rounded at the apex, larger lobes about 2.5-4 mm long. Petals orbicular, sometimes shortly clawed, about 3.5-5 mm diam., oil dots visible, not conspicuous, about 50-100 per petal. Outer staminal filaments about 5-15 mm long, anthers about 0.6-0.6 x 0.3-0.6 mm, gland comparatively large, terminal, near the back of the anther. Ovules about 10-30 per locule, placentas central, ovules radiating, ascending. Style about 7-24 mm long, approximating or exceeding the stamens.


Fruits globular, oval or ellipsoid, excavated at the apex, attaining about 14-23 x 8-17 mm, calyx lobes persistent, fleshy, inflexed, about 3-4 mm long. Seed solitary, occasionally two, attaining about 7-12 x 6-10 mm, testa +/- free from the crisp pericarp and free from the smooth surface of the uniformly textured cotyledons. Radicle lateral, cotyledonary stipules present.


Cataphylls about 2-4 pairs. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade obovate, apex acute or rounded, base attenuate, glabrous; oil dots small, very sparse. Seed germination time 15 to 36 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Australia, occurs in NEQ, CEQ and southwards as far as south-eastern New South Wales. Altitudinal range from sea level to 1100 m. Grows as a rheophyte in fringing forest along water courses.

Natural History & Notes

This species rarely produces millable logs.

Wood specific gravity 0.73. Hyland (1983).

Jambosa australis (H.L.Wendl. ex Link) DC., Prodromus 3: 287(1828). Myrtus australis (H.L.Wendl. ex Link) Spreng., Systema Vegetabilium 2 : 482(1825). Eugenia australis H.L.Wendl. ex Link, Enum. Hort. Berol. alt. 2: 28(1822), Type: Neotype: Wendland, Hortus Herrenhusianus (GOET). Eugenia simmondsiae F.M.Bailey, Queensland Agricultural Journal 23(6): 297(1909), Type: Tambourine Mountain, Mrs J.H. Simmonds.
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