Seeds of South Australia
Melaleuca nanophylla (Myrtaceae)
Dwarf-leaf Honey-myrtle
List of species for Melaleuca
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Seed collecting:
January to December
Herbarium region:
North Western
NRM region:
Alinytjara Wilurara
IBRA region
Maralinga (GVD03)Great Victoria Desert
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   [likes gypsum, habitat restricted, WA species]
RSCA map:
Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion. Please click the thumbnail map.
AVH map:
Australian distribution map (external link)
SA Census:
Census of South Australian plants (external link)     [genus Melaleuca]
Name derivation:
Melaleuca from the Greek 'melas' meaning black and 'leucon' meaning white; alluding to the contrasting colours of the bark of the first species described, which is said to have had white branches against a black trunk. Nanophylla from Greek 'nanos' meaning dwarf and 'phyllon' meaning leaf; referring to its very small leaves.
Found in the north-west part of South Australia, growing on the edges of saline, gypseous mound. Also found in Western Australia.
Native. Rare in South Australia. Very rare in Western Australia.
Plant description:
Shrub or small tree to 5 m high, glabrous except for the tawny-pubescent young shoots. Leaves alternate, broadly ovate, to 1.5 mm long and 1 mm wide, rounded, on the lower surface slightly keeled, glandular and obscurely 3-nerved, truncate at the base. Inflorescence in clusters in leaf axils forming short spikes with pale-yellow flowers. Flowers irregularly possibly dependent on rain events.
Fruit type:
Grey-brown, scaly, woody, spherical capsule to 2.5 mm long, in short spikes on woody stems.
Seed type:
Brown pyrimid-shaped seed to 1.5 mm long and 0.5 mm wide.
Embryo type:
Seed collecting:

Collect capsules that are large and hard with closed valves.

A total of 12,000 seeds (0.94g) of this rare tea-tree was collected from Waldanna Soak in the Great Victoria Desert in 2014 with the support of the Australian Seed Bank Partnership.

Seed cleaning:
Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for at least two weeks or until all the valves are open. Then place all the capsules into a bucket with a lid if possible and shake hard to dislodge the seeds from the capsules. Use a sieve to separate the seeds from the capsules. The fine material will contain the seeds and other flowering material. It is very difficult to separate the seeds from this other material as the size, shape and weight are very similar. However the seeds will be a darker brown. 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.
Seed germination:
Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.
Germination table:
DateResultT0T50Pre-treatment | Germination medium | Incubator: Photoperiod / Thermoperiod
Oct-156%7 dNA
1% agar;
12/12;  /  20°C
Result: Maximum percentage of germination observed.
T0: Number of days before first germinant observed.
T50: Number of days to achieve 50% germination.
Pre-treatment: The initial treatment that the seeds received prior to placement on germination media.
Germination medium: The substrate that seeds were placed on for the duration of the germination experiment.
Incubator conditions:
Photoperiod: The duration of light exposure that the seeds were subject to during a 24 hour period.
Thermoperiod: The constant or diurnal temperatures that seeds were subject to during a 24 hour period.
Winter conditions: 15°C 20 h (3am→11pm); 5°C 4 h (11pm→3am) / 10 h light (8am→6pm); 14 h dark (6pm→8am)
Spring/Autumn conditions: 22°C 12 h (8am→8pm); 10°C 12 h (8pm→8am) / 12 h light (8am→8pm); 12 h dark (8pm→8am)
Summer conditions: 30°C 14 h (6am→8pm); 15°C 10 h (8pm→6am) / 14 h light (6am→8pm); 10 h dark (8pm→6am)