Lophostemon confertus (MYRTACEA) Brush Box

Plants to Plant

Tall tree growing to 35 m in forest, much shorter and many-branched in littoral rainforest. Found in all types of rainforest, along margins and in open forests. Bark rough and scaly, leaves simple, appearing in whorls toward branchlet ends; blade glossy dark green above, paler below. Leaves are elliptical to ovate, 6-15 cm long. Cream-white flowers about 25 mm in diameter, five petals, stamens prominent and numerous in October to December. Green-brown, bell-shaped capsule with flat top, numerous seeds, ripe June to November, persistent. Tiny seeds should be mixed with dry sand for even distribution when sowing. Germinates easily. Favourite tree for beekeepers and widely planted as a park or street tree. Host plant for larvae of Eastern or Bronze Flat Netrocoryne repanda repanda, Common Red-eye or Eastern Dusk-flat Chaetocneme beata, Rare Red-eye or Ornate Dusk-flat Chaetocneme denitza and Miskins or Coral Jewel Hypochrysops miskini.

Photo: Robert Whyte