Plants of
South Australia
Eucalyptus capitanea
Myrtaceae
Desert Ridge-fruited Mallee
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Rare
Vulnerable
Endangered
Critically endangered
Extinct
Data deficient
Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
Marla
Marree
Mount Gambier
Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Etymology

Eucalyptus from the Greek 'eu' meaning well and 'calyptos' meaning covered; alluding to the cap or lid which covers the stamens in the bud. Capitanea from the Latin 'capitaneus' meaning head, chief; referring to the larger size of the leaves, buds and fruits compared to E. incrassata.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and restricted to an area north of Ceduna, growing on deep red sand on the crests and sides of sand dunes in mallee. Native. Rare in South Australia.
Herbarium regions: Nullarbor, Eyre Peninsula
NRM regions: Alinytjara Wilurara, Eyre Peninsula
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Multi-stemmed mallee to 7 m tall will rough, loose, ribbony to flaky, pale yellow-brown to grey lower stems and smooth, reddish to grey to cream upper stems. Juvenile leaves ovate to lanceolate, dull, blue-green becoming glossy green. Adult leaves to 130 mm long and 45 mm wide, firm, lanceolate to broad-lanceolate, glossy, green. Flowers axillary in umbel with 7 flowers. Buds to 22 mm long and 1 mm wide, distinctly ribbed, bud-cap conical to beaked about the same length or shorter than the bud-base. Flowers cream. Fruits are woody urn-shaped fruit to 22 mm long and 15 mm wide, distinctly ribbed, disc descending, valves 3 or 4 enclosed below the rim level. Seeds are dark brown to black pyramid-shaped seed to 4 mm long and 3 mm wide, with dinstinctive wing around the margin. Seed embryo type is folded.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and December. Collect mature fruits that are dark and hard (difficult to break with a finger nail), with the valves un-open any time of year. Leave the fruits in a breathable container in a dry room for one to two weeks. This allows the valves on the fruit to open and release the seeds. Separate the seeds by placing all the materials into a bucket and shaking it to dislodge the seeds. Pass the material through a sieve to separate the unwanted material. The finer material will contain both seeds (soft) and frass (hard) usually distinguishable from each other but can be very similar in shape and colour. With finer sieves, the seeds can be separated from the frass but this is not essential for storage or propagation. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.

Seeds stored:
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LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
BGA 
MSB
7,500 (15 g)
7,500 (15 g)
1729-Oct-2004MOL4697
Gairdner-Torrens
31-Mar-200695%-18°C
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.