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Leptospermum sejunctum

Bomaderry Teatree

Family: Myrtaceae

A comparatively smaller shrub, growing to 1.5 metres tall by 1 metre wide.

Note that the common name  has been applied by some websites but unsure if it is official. 

It has a very limited distribution, with records confined to the Nowra area and a short distance south-west of Nowra, as well as between Nowra and Braidwood.

It grows in dry sclerophyll forest and woodland, on sandy soil over sandstone, in close proximity to the Shoalhaven River and tributaries.

It has thin grey bark

Leaves are elliptical to oblanceolate, to 20 mm long and to 4 mm with a blunt tip, strongly aromatic, mid/lime-green with the midvein obvious.

Leptospermum typically produce solitary flowers, or in small groups of 2s and 3s or more, within the leaf axils. Flowers have 5 petals and sepals and have a symmetrical rotate shape.  Stamens are produced in groups of 5 which surround 1 carpel (female part). The prominent feature in Leptospermum is the hypanthium, a cup or vase-shaped receptacle that supports the flower.

In this species, the flowers are produced solitarily. There is a lack of formal information on their appearance; however, online photographs are available. They are white, to about 15 mm across.

The fruit is a capsule, about 8 mm in diameter, remaining on the plant after seed is released.

In the garden

No information is currently available for this species, likely due to its formal recognition in the last 35 years, and its somewhat rare status. It may be available for cultivation in the future. It grows naturally on sandy soils over sandstone in a temperate, coastal region. 

Most Leptospermum species make good garden plants.

Leptospermum are generally susceptible to the webbing caterpillar. Usually, the most effective control method for this pest is removing infestations by hand or, if necessary, you can systematically spray with a suitable pesticide. They are also prone to scale insects which is best treated by spraying white oil solution.

Propagation

Generally, leptospermum are easy to propagate from seed or cuttings.

Other information

This species is considered similar to L. variabile and L. oreophilum – a northern NSW and Queensland species respectively, both of which grow a long distance away from this species.

Most Leptospermum species are endemic to Australia where most are found in southern areas of the country and many make desirable garden plants. Current estimates recognize about ninety species of Leptospermum along with many cultivars now existing.
The nectar from the flowers of one species (L. scoparium) is harvested by bees, yielding honey, which is marketed as Manuka honey.

The general common name, Teatree, derives from the practice of early Australian settlers who soaked the leaves of several species in boiling water to make a herbal tea.

Many Leptospermum species have an ability to regenerate vegetatively after fire with suckering basal growth and branch-shoots. They will also regenerate by seed.

Leptospermum – derived from the Greek words leptos meaning “fine” or “slender” and sperma which means “seed” referring to the thin brown seeds of the genus.
sejunctum – Latin meaning “separated” – referring to the separation of its occurrence from two very similar species, namely L. variabile and L. oreophilum

It is not considered at risk in the wild although has a very limited distribution.

Australian National Botanic Gardens – Leptospermum profile page https://www.anbg.gov.au/leptospermum/

NSW Flora Online (PlantNET) – Leptospermum sejunctum

https://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/cgi-bin/NSWfl.pl?page=nswfl&lvl=sp&name=Leptospermum~sejunctum

Plants of South Eastern NSW – Leptospermum sejunctum profile page https://apps.lucidcentral.org/plants_se_nsw/text/entities/leptospermum_sejunctum.htm

By Jeff Howes, edited by Dan Clarke