Calytrix strigosa

Distribution Map
Family: Myrtaceae
Distribution: Heath and dunes on sandy soils in south-east to central Western Australia.
Common Name: No generally accepted common name
Derivation of Name: Calytrix...from Greek words, calyx and thrix (a hair); referring to hairs at the end of the calyx lobes.
strigosa...from Latin, striga, mowed hay and the suffix osus, notable, ie. many bristles around the flowers.
Conservation Status: Not considered to be at risk in the wild.

General Description:

Calytrix consists of about 75 species, all endemic to Australia with the greatest concentration being in the south-west corner. Most are small to medium shrubs with star-like flowers ranging in colour from white through, yellow, pink and purple to red.

Calytrix strigosa

Calytrix strigosa
Calytrix strigosa
Photos: Geoff Clarke

Calytrix strigosa is a small to semi-prostrate shrub between 0.2 and 1.0 metres high by about 1 metre wide. The leaves are very small, up to 5 mm long. The large, star-shaped flowers are 15 - 20 mm in diameter and are pink in colour. In common with most Calytrix species, a feature of the flowers is the "awns" or fine hairs which extend from the calyx lobes beyond the petals. Flowering occurs from late winter through to early summer.

Apart from C.tetragona (fringe myrtle), Calytrix has not received widespread cultivation. Limited experiences with C.strigosa have indicated that it is difficult to establish in the open ground but some success has been achieved in containers. Like other Western Australian species, cultivation of C.strigosa in humid climates is likely to be difficult.

Propagation of C.strigosa is best from cuttings as seed can be difficult to germinate. Experimentation into the use of grafting has been carried out with Calytrix species using the closely related genus Darwinia as root stock. Some success has been reported but it is not known whether grafting of C.strigosa has been attempted.

For further information on cultivation and propagation of Calytrix, see the article Growing Calytrix.


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