Baeckea linifolia

Flax-leaf Heath Myrtle, Swamp Myrtle, Weeping Baeckea

Family: Myrtaceae

It is found in heaths, usually in damp areas and near sandstone waterfalls and creeks (coast and tablelands), from south-east Queensland to eastern Victoria where it is rare.

The leaves are linear and widely spaced, more or less terete and growing close to the stem; to 15 mm long, acute at the end and with a tapering base.

White flowers are produced solitarily in the leaf axils, up to 5 mm across and have a typical myrtle appearance similar to Leptospermum. The main flowering time is June to December.

In the garden

It is a very hardy, erect shrub with branches having drooping tips, growing to 2.5 metres. It is an ideal screen plant. It occasionally self-seeds and the flowers attract bees.

It can be pruned very hard and will reshoot quickly and is pest free.

It is a good cut flower.


It can be grown from seed, which germinates well without pre-treatment, but seed is difficult to collect as it is released from the small seed capsules when ripe. Cuttings of firm, current season’s growth strike readily.

The author has been growing this plant for over 30 years.

Other information

It likely regenerates from seed after fire and suckering shoots of burnt stems.

Baeckea – after Dr Abraham Baeck (1713–1795), a Swedish physician and friend of the botanist Linnaeus;

linifolia – flax-leaved (long and narrow); Linum being the scientific name of flax and folium – ‘leaf’

Not known to be threatened in the wild.


By Jeff Howes