Eucalyptus from the Greek 'eu' meaning well and 'calyptos' meaning covered; alluding to the cap or lid which covers the stamens in the bud. Pauciflora from the Latin 'paucus' meaning few and 'florus' meaning flower; referring to the species having few flowers. However, this is a misnomer and may have originated in an early collected specimen losing its buds in transit, as all of the subspecies can flower quite profusely.
Distribution and status
Found only in a few areas in the lower South-east in South Australia, growing on sand in low forest. Also found in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. Native. Rare in South Australia. Rare in Queensland. Common in the other states.
Herbarium region: South Eastern
NRM region: South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Single to multi-stemmed tree to 25 m high with smooth bark throughout, sheding in ribbins of grey, tan, olive to yellow-cream. Juvenile leaves ovate to elliptical, sometime pruinose, bluish. Adult leaves to 220 mm long and 40 mm wide, large lanceolate, glossy green to blue-green. Inflorescence axillary in groups of 9-21 flowers. Buds to 8 mm long and 5 mm wide, club-shaped, bud-cap conical and shorter in length than the base. Flowers white appearing in spring and summer. Of the six subspecies recognised, this is the only one found in South Australia. Fruits are woody, cup-shaped to cone-shaped fruit to 12 mm long and 11 mm wide, disk descending, valves 3-4 just below or at rim level. Seeds are dark brown to black pyramid-shaped seed to 2 mm long and 1.5 mm wide. 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.