Angophora inopina

Charmhaven Apple

Family: Myrtaceae

A smaller tree, or mallee, reaching 8 metres.

It has a very restricted range, confined primarily to the Lake Macquarie area of coastal NSW, between Wyong and Newcastle. There are two disjunct populations further north at Karuah and Bulahdelah. This species is a listed threatened species at State and Commonwealth level.

It is typically found on sandy deposits over sandstone in open shrubby coastal woodlands.

The bark is fibrous and continuous, grey to brown.

The juvenile foliage / coppicing growth is usually ovate-lanceolate to 7 cm long and to 3 cm wide, mid to dark green in colour.

The adult leaves remain opposite to sub-opposite, lanceolate to falcate, to 12 cm long and up to 3 cm wide with a petiole to 1.5 cm; green to dark-green in colour and sometimes glossy. The leaves are not overly odorous. The undersides of the leaves are much paler, with a distinctive fine reticulate venation which aids identification.

The primary inflorescence of “eucalypts” (Angophora / Corymbia / Eucalyptus) is an umbellaster (an umbel-like cluster of flowers). In Angophora, the flower still retains its small and free petals and sepals. They are not fused into a calyptra / operculum which is shed, as in Eucalyptus and Corymbia.
Flower buds are produced in umbellasters of 3 to 7, ovoid to globose to about 8 mm long and to 8 mm wide. The petals are very short – about 3 mm long. The buds are usually green in colour. Flowering can be observed in December to February and individual flowers are up to 1 to 2 cm across, bright cream to white. Like Corymbia spp., Angophora spp. have flowers positioned beyond the foliage at the terminals. The umbellasters are often arranged in compound groups.

The capsules are ovoid to globose with conspicuous ribs and teeth, smaller than those of A. hispida or A. costata, to 13 mm long by 15 mm wide with a flat disc.

This is a much more suited Angophora for small gardens. It typically grows to about 8 m tall and is usually found smaller in the wild, growing as a mallee. It has a typically narrow canopy-spread. It would be useful in landscaping.

They could be tried as a specimen tree in a larger yard within a lawn or in a spot where it is difficult getting other small trees to grow.

It is naturally found on a sandy soil. Very useful on a rocky ridge or shallow soil.

Very attractive flowers in Summer. It could be trained as a mallee once established by frequent cutting and pruning of main stems.


In the garden

Not overly popular with gardens in these modern times but a very reliable and attractive small tree. It is listed as threatened with extinction and so may be hard to source for gardens.

Angophora spp. can suffer problems from, caterpillars, leaf eating beetles, psyllids and borers to name a few. In undisturbed conditions, the numbers of eucalypt-feeding insects and their predators and parasites are in balance, so that they rarely cause tree death and most trees quickly recover from attack. In a home situation nature can get out of balance.


Seed would work best.

Cuttings are difficult to start, but can be used in some species.

For further information refer to: http://anpsa.org.au/APOL2007/sep07-s1.html
Angophora is one of three similar genera that are commonly referred to as “eucalypts”, the others being Corymbia and Eucalyptus.

Other information

Angophora inopina is very similar to A. floribunda in terms of its leaves and fruits and some consider it to be a coastal stunted form of A. floribunda. It was previously treated as a form of Angophora bakeri.

Regenerates very quickly after fire from lignotuber and epicormic shoots with coppicing growth.

Angophora is a genus of 10 to 13 species (dependent on results of ‘lumping’ and ‘splitting’), endemic to Australia, occurring only in the eastern mainland states. All 10 to 13 species can be found in New South Wales. 

Angophora – from the Greek word Angeio (spelt αγγειο) which means “vessels” such as “vases” or “pots”, and –phora meaning “bringing forth” or “carrying”, relating to the vase-like fruits (capsules) of many species.

inopina – Latin – meaning “unexpected” – referring to the fact that this species has remained undiscovered for so long near Sydney.

Listed as threatened with extinction, with the category of vulnerable, under both the State and Commonwealth legislation.

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage – Angophora inopina threatened species profile page

NSW Flora Online (PlantNET) – Angophora inopina profile page

EUCLID – Centre of Australian National Biodiversity Research – Angophora inopina profile page  https://apps.lucidcentral.org/euclid/text/entities/angophora_inopina.htm

Wikipedia – Angophora inopina profile page


By Dan Clarke