Myoporum is a genus of about 30 species, of which sixteen are found in Australia. M.parvifolium is a prostrate shrub which can form broad mats of foliage to about 3 metres in diameter. The leaves are linear to narrowly oblong up to 50 mm long by 5-8 mm wide with entire of slightly toothed margins. The flowers occur in the leaf axils in late spring through to early autumn. They are star-shaped, about 75 mm in diameter and may be white or pale pink with purple spots. The flowers are followed by globular shaped fruits.
Myoporum parvifolium is a popular plant in cultivation and is hardy in a range of soils and climates. It is an excellent, spreading groundcover for a sunny position; in shade it can become sparsely foliaged. Its hardiness has led to it being used as a root stock for grafting the related Eremophila species.
Propagation from seed is usually successful without any pretreatment but germination may be slow. Cuttings of hardened, current season’s growth strike easily and this is the preferred method of propagation.
Pink flowered form of Myoporum parvifolium
Photo: Murray Fagg – Australian National Botanic Gardens