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Australian Plants online

On the Brink - 2

A series on Australian Plants at risk in their natural habitat.

Agapetes meiniana

Agapetes is a genus in the heath family (Ericaceae). This family is poorly represented in Australia but it includes such well known garden plants as Azalea, Rhododendron and Erica. The genus Agapetes comprises 80 or so species but A.meiniana is the sole Australian member of the genus.

Agapetes meiniana   

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Agapetes meiniana (which does not have a common name) is found in north-eastern Queensland rainforests above about 1200 metres. Under the ROTAP* coding system it is classified as "2RC-" meaning that it is regarded as rare but not under any current identifiable threat as it is protected in several dedicated reserves (eg. Bellenden Kerr, Cape Tribulation and Cedar Bay National Park). The species is not presently listed under the Australian Government's Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

A.meiniana is a shrubby, semi-climber with glossy, oval to lance-shaped leaves which have a pinkish tinge when new. The red or pink tubular flowers have a waxy appearance and are about 3 cm long. The species has proven to be very hardy even in cool climates but can be difficult to flower successfully. It is best grown in a semi shaded moist location protected from full sun. Its attractive foliage make it an excellent container plant and it can be grown successfully indoors.

* ROTAP: Rare or Threatened Australian Plants (1988). J.D.Briggs and J.H.Leigh, CSIRO Division of Plant Industry (Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Special Publication No.14).


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Australian Plants online - June 2002
Association of Societies for Growing Australian Plants