Australian Systematic Botany 18: 452 (2005) APNI
Erect shrub, to c. 1(–3) m high; branchlets minutely hispid. Leaves suberect or spreading, oblong to elliptic, 4–10 mm long, 1–2.5(–4) mm wide, usually convex, discolorous, upper surface glabrous, rarely scabrous, lower surface glaucous, papillose between nerves, sometimes irregularly pilose, longitudinally 3-nerved, the outer 2 with short diverging branches, margins entire or minutely scabrous-ciliate near the obtuse apex. Flowers usually unisexual, white, ± crowded, 3–10 in terminal or upper-axillary spikes 4–10 mm long; bracteoles broadly ovate, 1.2–1.7 mm long, obtuse, glabrous or minutely hispid; sepals resembling bracteoles but larger, 1.7–2.6 mm long; corolla 3–4.5 mm long (males slightly larger than females), lobes subequal to tube (or only c. half as long in non-alpine forms), acute, spreading to recurved, pilose to densely bearded within; anthers without sterile tips, partly exserted (male flowers), or rudimentary (female flowers); ovary 5–6-locular, glabrous, style 0.6–0.8 mm long (female flowers). Fruit ± spherical, c. 4–5 mm diam., pink or red when ripe. See note below regarding flowering period.
CVU, EGU, GipP, HFE, HNF, HSF, MonT, SnM, VAlp. Also NSW, ACT, Tas. A common component of heathlands and woodlands almost throughout the alps and subalps (but apparently absent from Lake Mountain), with a disjunct occurrence in taller forest at Mt Macedon.
Two seemingly distinct forms occur in Victoria, the commoner a strictly high-altitude, low (usually under 60 cm high) shrub flowering Nov.-Jan., and the other commonly a lax shrub to c. 3 m high, often with drooping branchlets, and descending from subalpine areas to river valleys at c. 400 m altitude in the north-east and far east (e.g. Cheshunt, Howqua River, Bonang-Bendoc area, etc.), flowering Aug.-Nov.
|Bioregion||Occurrence status||Establishment means|
|Central Victorian Uplands||present||native|
|East Gippsland Uplands||present||native|
|New South Wales|
|Australian Capital Territory|