Acrophyllum australe

Distribution Map
Family: Cunoniaceae
Distribution: Damp areas near waterfalls in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney.
Common Name: No generally accepted common name
Derivation of Name: Acrophyllum....From Greek acros, upper or topmost and phyllon, a leaf or foliage, referring to the terminal whorls of leaves.
australe...."southern", referring to the global distribution of the species.
Conservation Status: Listed as Vulnerable under the EPBC Act* (ie. facing a high risk of extinction in the wild in the medium-term future, as determined in accordance with prescribed criteria). Classified as 2VCi under the ROTAP * system.

General Description:

Acrophyllum is a genus of a single species (monotypic) occurring in a small area of the Blue Mountains. It was formerly known as Calycomis australis.

Acrophyllum australe
Acrophyllum australe
Photos: Jill Dark

Acrophyllum australe is a small, open shrub from 1-2 metres high. The serrated leaves are an elongated oval shape tapering to a soft point and usually in whorls of three. They are 50-100 mm long by about 10-45 mm wide. The small, white flowers occur in clusters on purplish spikes emerging from the leaf axils towards the end of the branches. They are usually seen in late spring to early summer.

This species is not seen often in gardens but it is an attractive species in flower and foliage and is worthy of more widespread cultivation. It requires a protected position in moist soils.

Acrophyllum australe can be propagated by seed or cuttings. However, because of the protected nature of the plant, propagating material would need to be sourced from plants already in cultivation.


* EPBC Act = Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999;
  ROTAP = Rare or Threatened Australian Plants (Briggs and Leigh, 1988)
  For further information refer the Australian Plants at Risk page


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