Austromyrtus dulcis

Midyim, Midgen Berry

Family: Myrtaceae

A shrub typically to 2 metres tall, with a spread to about the same dimensions.

It is found on coastal NSW, north from Urunga, spreading up the coast into Queensland. Here, it grows as far north as Fraser Island. 

It is typically found on sandy soils in heathland, shrubland and dry sclerophyll woodland to forest – often very close to the coast. 

Austromyrtus spp. have simple and opposite leaves. In this species, leaves are ovate to lanceolate, to 30 mm long and to 11 mm wide; mid to dark-green, with the lower surface paler (white to grey) and sometimes hairy; with acute apices. New growth is often red-bronze; leaves have a fragrance when crushed

Austromyrtus spp. have white, 5-petalled flowers are produced solitarily or in cymes or raceme-like groups in leaf axils. In this species, flowers are produced solitarily on short stalks, in leaf axils of up to 6 flowers, in spring through to summer; each flower about 1 cm across; white in colour.

The fruit is a berry, round, light-purple and dotted with dark-purple spots, 5 to 6 mm in diameter. 

In the garden

This is a very common and popular plant in native gardens and has been used extensively. It makes a nice gap-filler, low spreading shrub and can be used effectively as a low hedge. 

It is a popular “bush tucker” plant with the fruit used to make jam. 

It is best grown in part-sun on a well-drained soil, with adequate moister. It is a useful plant for rockeries, sloping gardens and bush-tucker gardens. Avoid hot western-sun. 

It can be pruned to keep a tight smaller plant


Propagates from cuttings or seed

Other information

Austromyrtus is a genus of only 3 species – endemic to NSW and Queensland. NSW currently has two recognised species.

This species may be able to regenerate after fire through root/basal suckering. It would also regenerate from seed.

Austromyrtus – Latin – Austro meaning “south” and myrtus – meaning “myrtle” – a southern myrtle.

dulcis – Latin meaning “sweet-smelling” of “fragrant” – referring to the leaves. 

This species is not considered to be at risk of extinction in the wild. 

NSW Flora Online (PlantNET) – Austromyrtus dulcis profile page    https://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/cgi-bin/NSWfl.pl?page=nswfl&lvl=sp&name=Austromyrtus~dulcis

Gardening with Angus – Austromyrtus dulcis profile page https://gardeningwithangus.com.au/austromyrtus-dulcis-midgenberry/ 

Wrigley, J.W. & Fagg, M.I. (2001). Australian Native Plants – Propagation, cultivation and use in landscaping. 4th edition. New Holland Publishers, Pty. Ltd. Australia.

By Dan Clarke and Jeff Howes.