Saturday, April 25, 2015

Box Leafed Canthium

Psydrax odorata forma buxifolia
This small tree species had one of its magnificent flowering years, all around the district, this year.

Having delighted us with its lovely fragrant flowers, as well as delighted the insects (and the birds which feasted on them), it is now ripening fruit. There will be a second feast for the birds, shortly.
This is a plant that is rather slow-growing, but very pretty from infancy, with its geometrically neat, paired branches.
Here is a pretty specimen in Peacehaven Botanic Park at Highfields.

Its small rounded shiny leaves have a (very) vague resemblance to the English box which is the reason for it’s common name. (Won't it be nice when English-speaking Australian culture has matured to the point where our plant names reflect a love for our native plants for their own sakes, rather than always having to compare them with something from the "old country"?)
Some people call it “native jade”, because it can fill the “jade niche” in gardens for those who would rather grow a local native plant. I find it much prettier than jade. Here it is as a pot plant on my patio.
Like so many local dry rainforest plants, it is very long lived, so makes a good pot specimen for many years.
It prefers a sunny position, and is drought and frost hardy.


Anonymous said...

There is a magnificent amount of fruit about. I have planted a tray of seed. I have been observing birds at the Bunyas enjoying the feast.


Patricia Gardner said...

Hi Mick.
There certainly is! I sometimes wonder how birds manage. Some years there is a great feast like this. Others, practically nothing.