Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Syzygium corynanthum (F.Muell.) L.A.S.Johnson

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Leaves and fruit. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Habit, flower & bud, anther, fruit, seedling. © CSIRO
Cotyledon and 10th leaf stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO

Johnson, L.A.S. (1962) Contributions from the New South Wales National Herbarium 3(3): 99.

Common name

Cherry, Sour; Sour Cherry; Watergum; Satinash, Killarney; Normanby Satinash; Killarney Satinash


Outer dead bark +/- pale brown.


Oil dots quite numerous. Leaf blades about 3.7-11.7 x 2.4-5.4 cm. Midrib depressed on the upper surface, at least towards the base. Leafy twigs rather pale.


Fewer than 20 flowers per inflorescence (generally no more than ten), bracts deciduous, absent at anthesis. Calyx tube (hypanthium) + pedicel about 6-14 mm long, calyx tube (hypanthium) about 3.5-7 mm diam., calyx lobes dimorphic, slightly concave, +/- semicircular, about 1.5-3 mm long, the edges usually parting from the top of the calyx at anthesis. Petals rounded, about 3-6 mm wide, oil dots visible, 50 or more per petal, distributed over most of the petal except the margins. Outer staminal filaments about 4-15 mm long, anthers about 0.6-1 x 0.4-0.7 mm, gland terminal, on the back of the anther. Ovules in two rows in each locule, about 12-15 per locule, placentas axile, ovules +/- horizontal to radiating. Style about 6-20 mm long, approximating the stamens.


Fruits pyriform, excavated at the apex, attaining about 11-18 mm diam., calyx lobes persistent, but moribund, about 1.5-2 mm long, pericarp succulent, cells radiating from the testa to the exocarp. Seed solitary, about 6-8 mm diam., testa adhering to the pericarp but quite free from the uniformly textured cotyledons. Radicle basal to slightly lateral.


Cataphylls about 3 or 4 pairs. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade elliptic, apex acute or acuminate, base cuneate or attenuate, glabrous; oil dots small and sparse, only visible with a lens. Seed germination time 202 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Australia, occurs in NEQ and also in south-eastern Queensland and north-eastern New South Wales but not in coastal central Queensland. Altitudinal range in NEQ from 450-1100 m. Grows in well developed upland and mountain rain forest in NEQ.

Natural History & Notes

A commonly cultivated tree for shade and for the massed display of red fruits. Fruits are often seedless and are sometimes used for jam making.

This species produces millable logs and the timber has been marketed as Killarney Satinash for many years in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales, a useful general purpose structural timber. Wood specific gravity 0.70. Hyland (1983).

Eugenia corynantha F.Muell., Fragm. Phytogr. 9: 144(1875), Type: NSW, Richmond River, Henderso; lecto: MEL; Port Macquarie, Carron; syn: MEL; Richmond River, Henderson; syn: MEL. Eugenia punctulata F.M.Bailey, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Stock. Botany Bulletin 13: 10(1896), Type: Syn: Eumundi, R.D. Power, 1894, in fruit, BRI; B J.H. Simmonds, in flower June, 1895; BRI, MEL.
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