Seeds of South Australia
Melicytus angustifolius ssp. divaricatus (Violaceae)
Tree violet
List of species for Melicytus
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Seed collecting:
October to April
Herbarium regions:
Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Southern Lofty, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Northern and Yorke, South East
IBRA regions
Lucindale (NCP03)Naracoorte Coastal Plain
 Endangered   (IUCN: EN D)   [persistant spp here]
Fleurieu (KAN02)Kanmantoo
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [is often mistaken for an olive tree, sprayed on roadsides; northern area]
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Near Threatened   (Probable Decline)   [is often mistaken for an olive tree, sprayed on roadsides]
Broughton (FLB02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [restricted occurrences, needs good rainfall ]
Olary Spur (FLB03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   (Probable Decline)   [Mt Bryan, grazed]
Southern Flinders (FLB04) 
 Least Concern   (Probable Decline)
Northern Flinders (FLB05) 
 Data Deficient   [query ID, possibly Scaevola spinescens]
Wimmera (MDD05)Murray Darling Depression
 Endangered   (IUCN: EN D)   [more widespread, on roadsides, can be grazed in paddocks]
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 Melicytus]
Name derivation:
Melicytus from the Greek 'meli' meaning honey and 'kytos' meaning hollow containers; referring to the staminal nectaries of the flowers. Angustifolius from the Latin 'augusta' meaning narrow and 'folium' meaning leaf. Divaricatus from Latin meaning to spread apart. 
Found in South Australia in the lower Flinders Ranges and across the Mount Lofty Ranges. A small population occurs around Naracoorte. Also found in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania.
Native. Uncommon in South Australia. Common in the other states.
Plant description:
Dense branching shrub to 2 m tall with few succulent lance-shaped leaves and long spines. Flowers are small and yellow along woody stems. Flowering between August and December.
Fruit type:
Deep blue, round fleshy fruit to 20 mm long.
Seed type:
Dark brown ovoid seeds to 6 mm long.
Seed collecting:
Pick ripe fruits which are soft and deep blue in colour, by hand. May have to lift up branches to find the fruits.
Seed cleaning:
Place the fruits in a bucket of water and rub with your hands to remove the flesh. Wash again with clean water and drain. Then place the wet seeds on some paper towel and leave to dry. 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 viability:
From three collections, the seed viability were average to high, ranging from 60% to 90%.
Seed germination:
This species has physiological dormancy that need to be overcome for the seed to germinate.
Germination table:
DateResultT0T50Pre-treatment | Germination medium | Incubator: Photoperiod / Thermoperiod
Sep-060%NANA cold stratification at 5°C 6 weeks, 1% hydrogen peroxide 48h;
filter paper over moist sand;
Incubated under spring/autumn conditions
Sep-060%NANA cold stratification at 5°C 6 weeks;
filter paper over moist sand;
Incubated under spring/autumn conditions
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)