Eucalyptus from the Greek 'eu' meaning well and 'calyptos' meaning covered, alluding to the cap or lid which covers the stamens in the bud. Viminalis from the Latin 'viminalis' meaning viminous or osier-bearing, referring to the resemblance of the adult foliage to that of the osier willow. Cygnetensis named after the Cygnet River on Kangaroo Island where the type specimen was collected.
Distribution and status
Found on southern Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, southern Mount Lofty Ranges and the South-east in South Australia growing on well-drained sandy or loam soils. Also found in Victoria. Native. Uncommon in South Australia. Common in Victoria.
Herbarium regions: Eyre Peninsula, Murray, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Single or several-trunked spreading tree to 22 m tall with smooth, pale grey to creamy-white bark throughout and rough persistent, fissured, grey-brown bark on the lower trunk and branches. Juvenile leaves narrow-lanceolate to lanceolate, glossy green. Adult leaves to 300 mm long and 30 mm wide, lanceolate, sometimes wavy, glossy green. Flowers axillary in groups of 7 (or mixed 3 to 7). Buds to 8 mm long and 5 mm wide, bud-cap cone-shaped equal to the base. Flowers white appearing in summer to autumn. This subspecies is distinguished from the other subspecies found in South Australia, Eucalyptus viminalis ssp. viminalis which has a large tree habit, mostly or completely smooth bark and flowers, buds and fruits in groups of 3. Fruits are rounded to cone-shaped fruit to 8 mm long and 9 mm wide, disc ascending, valves 3 or 4 above the rim. Seeds are dark brown to black ovoid seed, with wrinkled surface. 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.